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New charter school scheduled to open

District still accepting applicants
By: Sara Seyydin Journal Staff Writer
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Enrollment numbers have exceeded target and the doors to the Alta Vista Community Charter are scheduled to open Aug. 15. District officials say just over 95 students have enrolled in the school, which serves kindergarten through fifth graders. The charter was contingent upon at least 85 students enrolling. Based on the enrollment numbers, the board of trustees gave its final approval for the charter at Wednesday night?s meeting. It will be tuition-free, taught by credentialed teachers and allow students to choose from a variety of learning options, including in-seat, school-based instruction, independent study, or a personalized combination of both. Daniel Berlant, president of the board of trustees, said he is looking forward to the school?s launch. ?We are excited that next year we will be able to provide additional educational options for parents,? Berlant said. ?Our traditional schools do a great job of preparing our students for the future, but some students learn better in a different school environment.? Superintendent Michele Schuetz said the district will be interviewing for a teacher administrator on July 2 and plans to hire teachers on July 17. She said while not all of the programs written into the charter will start-up the first year, they will be phased in over time. ?The first year will be a challenge,? Schuetz said. ?We?ll be running a very tight budget until the numbers grow.? Involved staff and parents will help get the program off the ground, though, she added. For now the district is selecting curriculum, finishing painting the site at the Alta Vista Education Center and purchasing some additional furniture. The district is still taking application packets for families interested in enrolling their children in the charter. It will also move forward with applying for a start-up grant. Schuetz said while some aspects of the charter may be still in progress, the most important thing has been established. ?I think the most important thing for us is that we know we have a direction,? Schuetz said. ?Parents are really excited. I love their enthusiasm.? Reach Sara Seyydin at saras@goldcountrymedia.com, or follow her on Twitter @AJ_News. ______________________________________________________ The Alta Vista Community Charter will offer parents the following choices: ? A five day a week in-class, regular school-based program ? A home school program with a teacher one hour a week ? A home school program with a teacher one hour a week, plus school-based enrichment classes and extracurricular activities ? A combination of home-school/in-seat/online program Source: Auburn Union School District