Emery School District Considers New Charter School
The Emery School Board held a public hearing today for Oakland based Integrity Education Center, a non profit education organization that wants to open a new charter school in Emeryville. The same charter school was previously twice rejected by the Berkeley Unified School District, the last time in October 2011.
One Emeryville teacher spoke out against allowing a charter school in the district at the public hearing on the matter, claiming charter schools notoriously "cherry pick" the best students from the existing regular public school, leaving it impoverished with a larger percentage of lower academic achieving students and setting up the prospect of a two tiered education system.
The last time Integrity was rejected by Berkeley in October, Director of the Berkeley School Board Karen Hemphill intoned, “It was pretty clear that we thought they had good intentions, their proposal just didn’t meet the requirements set by the state”.
In addition to her Berkeley Schools work, Ms Hemphill coincidentally also serves as Emeryville's City Clerk.
In Emeryville, Integrity submitted a petition for the new charter school to the Emery School Board, as required by law, but it contained only signatures of teachers, no parents and no teachers from Emery Unified School District.
State law mandates school districts must consider all regulation compliant charter school proposals brought to them and if found to pass State guidelines, the district must approve the charter school proposal.
The Emery School Board will deny or approve the submission by the charter school at their regular meeting scheduled for January 23rd.