Monroe School Closure Impacts School Choice but Underscores Charter Accountability
NEW ORLEANS —Excellence Academy Charter School in Monroe lost its latest effort to continue offering school choice to more than 200 students and jobs to nearly 30 teachers in North Louisiana. As a result, Excellence Academy will remain closed. While the Louisiana Association of Public Charter Schools (LAPCS) is disappointed that the school was not successful, this is a significant opportunity for charters schools and their authorizers alike to recognize how important it is to implement clear and agreed upon performance standards.
“Closure is a tough reality that can exist for charter schools and the community they serve. What is even more challenging is when an authorizer has not set clear and transparent policies and processes that define both expectations and the standards by which the school will be measured,” said Caroline Roemer, Executive Director of the Louisiana Association of Public Charter Schools. “It takes two entities to make a great charter school: the authorizer and the school itself.”
LAPCS has worked with policymakers for over a decade to create one of the top-rated charter laws in the country with a focus on accountability. Louisiana Charter Law includes a mandate that charter school authorizers follow the National Association of Charter School Authorizers’ (NACSA’s) “Principles & Standards for Quality Charter School Authorizing” to ensure they are following best practices both in the evaluation of charter school applications, as well as in oversight of existing schools.
“We prefer to see precious, valuable resources be used in the classroom and not see these accountability issues litigated in court,” said Roemer. “Had Monroe City School Board better performed their duties regarding oversight of this school during the last four years, this whole ordeal for parents and taxpayers could have been avoided.”
Contact: Roby Chavez
About Louisiana Association of Public Charter Schools
The Louisiana Association of Public Charter Schools (LAPCS) is a 501c3 nonprofit organization whose mission is to support, promote, and advocate for the Louisiana charter school movement, increasing student access to high-quality public schools statewide. Learn more about LAPCS at https://lacharterschools.org.