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Guam charter school yet to open

by Krystal Paco

Guam - The Guahan Academy Charter School may have been approved by the Guam Academy Charter School Council over two years ago, but has yet to open its doors. Two months into the new school year and the Council has yet to receive word on whether their first approved charter school will open their doors as planned next month.

Council chair Rosa Palomo told KUAM News, "They're stating that they're going to open the second week of October. I as chair have no information at all. I do know this because I've been communicating with the speaker's office 2208 they are in the budget for Fiscal Year 2013; they have been allocated $5,500 per pupil rather than the $6,000 that they were originally seeking. I still cannot inform my board as to how many students they have and still cannot inform my board where this school is going to take place."

Meanwhile, two other hopefuls are looking to open charter schools, including Atdao Charter School and Blue Ocean Charter School. Palomo says the board was set to discuss the Atdao Charter School application at today's monthly meeting, but failed to make quorum. Atdao Charter School submitted a revised application to the Council in June 2011 following their original submission the previous August.

According to Palomo, Blue Ocean Charter School is also reconsidering re-applying after their first application was returned. "The primary reason why Blue Ocean was not considered was because of its virtual schooling concept - e law does not speak to virtual schooling, it speaks to contact hours."

Looking ahead, Palomo says the Council has learned from their mistakes with the Guahan Academy Charter School. "We will not even entertain an application until we've confirmed a location be it a lease agreement. If it's a school, that school definitely has been turned over or a portion of the school turned over or designated by the superintendent of education. We will not repeat this mistake," she promised.

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