Commission formally denies Selma charter school application

Published 3:57 pm Tuesday, March 26, 2019

During a meeting of the Alabama Public Charter School Commission Monday, the application for Rosa J. Young (RJY) Academy, which was hoping to set up shop in Selma, was officially denied.

Charter Schools Education Administrator Logan Searcy said that officials with the academy did not reapply and Monday’s decision was only a formal declaration of the commission’s earlier decision not to approve the school’s application.

“It may be that they’re doing more planning,” Searcy said. “They had plans in their application, but they needed more specifics.”

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Searcy said the application was lacking details in regard to funding, design and operations for the proposed school.

Organizers can reapply in September.

In a resolution, commissioners stated that RJY Academy “has not demonstrated competence in each element of the Alabama Public Charter School Commission’s established approval criteria and it is uncertain whether the applicant could open and operate a successful public charter school.”

Specifically, the resolution stated that RJY Academy’s application did not “sufficiently describe the school’s financial plans and policies” and lacked a “fully developed startup year budget.”

Further, the resolution states that RJY Academy’s application did not “demonstrate fiscal viability” and the “educational design, operational plan or fiscal plan was not fully developed, especially in governance structure, sound budget preparation and financial capacity.”

“The application demonstrates educational purpose and a passion for teaching and learning and further provides an adequate foundation for a top-quality educational charter school program that, with program refinement, enhancement of the governing standards for the school and additional financial resources, would comprise a charter school program that meets the objectives under state law and nationally-recognized standards,” the resolution stated.

Searcy said organizers will be encouraged to reapply in the Fall and could attend an applicant workshop, which will provide technical assistance to would-be charter school leaders, in July.