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For Immediate Release
Tuesday, February 26, 2013
Contact:JC Considine 781-338-3112

Board of Elementary and Secondary Education Approves 2 New Charter Schools and 3 Expansion Requests from Existing Charter Schools

MALDEN - The Massachusetts Board of Elementary and Secondary Education voted on Tuesday to grant charters to the founders of two proposed charter schools and approve expansion requests from three existing charter schools to add seats to their current enrollments.

The two new charters are among five finalists that the Board approved this week. Three other new charters were approved by the Board on Monday evening. As part of the 2012-13 charter school application cycle, the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education received 22 prospectuses from groups seeking to open new charter schools in Massachusetts. Commissioner Chester invited the founders of 12 of those groups to submit final applications, though one dropped out before submitting a final application. Earlier this month, the commissioner recommended that the Board vote to grant charters to five out of 11 proposed charter schools.

The two new charter schools approved on Tuesday were:

  • Phoenix Academy Public Charter High School Springfield, a regional Commonwealth charter school that will open in Springfield in fall 2014. The school will enroll 250 students in grades 9-12 when it reaches its full capacity.
  • Pioneer Charter School of Science II, a regional Commonwealth charter school that will open in Saugus in fall 2013. The school will enroll 360 students in grades 7-12 when it reaches its full capacity.

The three charter schools approved by the Board on Monday evening included:

  • City on a Hill Charter Public School II, a Commonwealth charter school that will open in Boston in fall 2013. The school will enroll 280 students in grades 9-12 when it reaches its full capacity.
  • City on a Hill Charter Public School New Bedford, a Commonwealth charter school that will open in New Bedford in fall 2014. The school will enroll 280 students in grades 9-12 when it reaches its full capacity.
  • UP Academy Charter School of Dorchester, a Horace Mann charter school that will open in Boston in fall 2013. The school will enroll 750 students in grades K1-8 when it reaches its full capacity.

Commonwealth charter schools are fully autonomous and operate independently of the local school district. Horace Mann charter schools are developed and operated in close cooperation with the host school district, and require approval of the local school committee. Charter schools are open to all Massachusetts students, with enrollment preference given to the students in the district or region where the school is located.

The Board also voted on Tuesday to approve expansion requests for three existing charter schools. The approved expansion requests include:

  • Community Day Charter Public School - Prospect in Lawrence, with a current maximum enrollment of 331 students in grades K1-8, will increase its enrollment by 69 students.
  • Four Rivers Charter Public School in Greenfield, a regional school with a current maximum enrollment of 212 students in grades 7-12, will increase its enrollment by 8 students.
  • Pioneer Valley Chinese Immersion Charter School in Hadley, a regional school with a current maximum enrollment of 300 students in grades K-8, will add grades 9-12 and increase its enrollment by 284 students.

The Board approved expansion requests for eight existing charter schools on Monday evening. Those approved expansion requests included:

  • Academy of the Pacific Rim Charter School in Boston, with a current maximum enrollment of 500 students in grades 5-12, will increase its enrollment by 45 students.
  • Codman Academy Charter Public School in Boston, with a current maximum enrollment of 145 students in grades 9-12, will add grades K1-8 and increase its enrollment by 200 students.
  • Conservatory Lab Charter School in Boston, with a current maximum enrollment of 169 students in grades K1-6, will add grades 7-8 and increase its enrollment by 275 students.
  • Edward W. Brooke Charter School in Boston, with a current maximum enrollment of 475 students in grades K-8, will increase its enrollment by 35 students.
  • Edward W. Brooke 2 Charter School in Boston, with a current maximum enrollment of 475 students in grades K-8, will increase its enrollment by 35 students.
  • Edward W. Brooke 3 Charter School in Boston, a regional charter school (Boston and Chelsea) with a current maximum enrollment of 475 students in grades K-8, will increase its enrollment by 35 students. The Board also approved a new cap on the school's enrollment whereby no more than 340 students may enroll from Boston.
  • Excel Academy Charter School in Boston, a regional charter school (Boston and Chelsea) with a current maximum enrollment of 300 students in grades 5-8, and a current cap of no more than 200 students from Boston, will add grades 9-12 and increase its enrollment by 148 students. The Board also approved a new cap on the school's enrollment whereby no more than 300 students may enroll from Boston.
  • Excel Academy Charter School – Chelsea in Chelsea, with a current maximum enrollment of 224 students in grades 5-8, will add grades 9-12 and increase its enrollment by 224 students.



Last Updated: February 26, 2013
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