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ALPHARETTA | Board of Ed. not budging on FSA Middle charter | Education

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ALPHARETTA | Board of Ed. not budging on FSA Middle charter

ALPHARETTA, Ga. -- One of Georgia's most prestigious middle schools is doing whatever it can to stay open next year, but is it too late?

Two days ago, Fulton Science Academy Middle School's charter renewal was denied. Now the only National Blue Ribbon school in the state is asking the Fulton County Board of Education to reconsider -- and they say they're giving the board everything it wants.

The Board of Ed. wants the length of the charter at three years; when the school proposed a 10-year charter, the board voted a unanimous "No" on Tuesday.

On Thursday, school officials announced they had submitted a revised proposal with a three-year length. Backed by nearly a dozen state lawmakers, they asked the Board of Education to reconsider.

"It isn't that we weren't willing to enter into discussions," said FSA governing board member Angela Lassetter. "We weren't given the opportunity to enter into a compromise."

"This must be dealt with," said Ga. State Senator John Albers of District 56. "It's never too late to do the right thing."

But the Board of Ed. is not budging. In a statement to the media, signed by superintendent Robert Avossa and board president Linda Schultz, the board said: "Fulton Science Academy Middle School delivered a new charter petition today which will be reviewed during the school system's annual petition application cycle. That cycle begins March 12, 2012.

"Any approved charters would begin operations during the 2013-2014 school year."

This means the school, for now, will either have to close or be on its own for the 2012-13 school year.

There is one other option: It can petition to become a state charter school.

School officials also announced Thursday a private fundraising drive, which they hope will allow it to survive on its own for as long as necessary.

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