Tallahassee Classical School is among the organizations backing a bill that would allow high-performing charter schools that want to expand, to bypass local school boards.
Sen. Manny Diaz’s bill creates the High-Performing Charter School Council to consider such applications. The Miami Republican got support from Tallahassee Charter School principal and co-founder Adrienne Campbell. She says the proposal is necessary because not all school district’s like charter schools, and she points to the Leon County School Board’s decision to reject both hers, and another application from Plato Academy.
“I witnessed the school district turn down a high performing charter application. Not on its merits but on a political stance against high performing charters joining the community," Campbell said, referencing Leon County School Superintendent Rocky Hanna's stance against charter schools.
"Our school also met the evaluation rubric requirements but were turned down as well for the same reason. We chose to appeal, but the appeal cost our school $30,000. And the high performing charter decided not to spend the money to do so. As a result we lost the opportunity for another high quality option to support students and families in this community.”
Some Plato Academy Schools are considered high performing. The State Board of Education overturned the Leon County’s School Board’s move in August of 2018. Tallahassee Classical is set to open in the Fall.