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More troubles for charter school

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by Krystal Paco

Guam - They've been in hot water before. From struggling to locate a school site to evading eviction from their Tiyan campus just months ago. It looks like the Guahan Academy Charter School could be in another mess of trouble.

It was last week the Guam Education Board approved a $298.8 million budget request for the Department of Education and operations for all 41 public schools for Fiscal Year 2015.

But what was missing in that request?

Funding for the Guahan Academy Charter School.

According to Guam Charter School Council chair Rosa Palomo, the council reviews and approves charter school applications as well as serves as an oversight committee.

With no budget request received from the Guahan Academy, the council had nothing to forward to the department of education to include in DOE's budget request.

Palomo says this is a growing concern as she even publicly reminded charter school officials at the last oversight hearing before lawmakers held back in November. As we previously reported, this was the same oversight hearing where school officials kept hush, deferring all questions to their attorney, Daniel Somerfleck.

While the rest of GovGuam has submitted their budget proposals, Senator Aline Yamashita also waits on any updates from the Guahan Academy who've only been in operation since August of last year.

Yamashita tells kuam today, "i wonder what their budget will look like" noting that in the past, school officials announced plans for growing the school's capacity from their current 500 student population.

Yamashita speculates that despite failing to submit a request, the Guahan Academy will remain open next school year and receive $5,500 per pupil as they did for the present school year. We should note, this funding will come from the DOE budget.

Meanwhile, KUAM has confirmed that Somerfleck no longer represents the school as well as Therese Arroyo-Matanane who previously served as the school's spokesperson. In addition, KUAM has confirmed that a few Guahan Academy board members are also cutting ties with the school.

Meanwhile school principal Donna Dwiggins has yet to respond to KUAM's calls.

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