High school foundation’s charter application moves forward

The Grambling High Foundation’s charter application continues to move forward. 

The foundation submitted an application to the Louisiana Department of Education on March 6 to convert the Grambling State University Laboratory Schools into a Type 2 K-12 charter school.

 The school would be called the Grambling Laboratory Charter School.  Converting the schools to a charter school will secure the long-term financial health of the school and ensure the continuance of K-12 education in the Grambling community.

For more than a century, the laboratory schools have been the sole provider of primary and secondary education in Grambling.  However, recent cuts to higher education funding have put the future of the schools in jeopardy.

The Grambling High Foundation has taken on the challenge of raising funds and to operate the schools in 2015-16 as well as developing a charter application to secure the future of the schools.  

“The Foundation is partnering with the Grambling High Alumni Association, Grambling State University, the Thurgood Marshall College Fund and many other groups to ensure the success of this effort,” said Gordon Ford, president of the Grambling High School Alumni Association and GHF.

The charter application was reviewed by SchoolWorks, LLC, a nationwide education consulting group, Ford said.  

SchoolWorks provided initial feedback on the charter application on April 29. The Foundation team provided a written response to the reviewer comments on May 13 and participated in a face-to-face interview in Baton Rouge on May 26 to answer questions about the application.

All questions raised in the initial review have been answered, and the team is waiting for the official recommendation from SchoolWorks on Monday, June 22, Ford said.

Following the official recommendation, the team may provide an additional response to the Department of Education if necessary.  The application will be considered and voted on during the August meeting of the Louisiana Board of Elementary and Secondary Education to be held Aug. 11 and 12. If approved, the Grambling Laboratory Charter School will begin operations for the 2016-17 school year. The school will be an open enrollment public charter school and will not charge tuition. 

Although the school will have open enrollment, as a conversion school, all current Grambling Laboratory School students and their siblings will have first priority for enrollment.  

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