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Charlotte's Community Charter School Faces Takeover

Community Charter School

One of Charlotte's oldest charter schools will either close at the end of this school year or face a dramatic change. The State Board of Education voted Thursday to allow another charter to take over Community Charter School. 

Community Charter School was among the first charter schools to open in North Carolina in 1997. Lately, it's been struggling. The elementary school, located in the Cherry neighborhood near uptown, has lost nearly half its students over the past three years. Enrollment is now at 82. That's also hit their bottom line, since revenue is based on the number of students. And test scores are low.  Last year, only about a quarter of students tested at grade-level.

All of this concerned the charter advisory board last month, when school leaders asked to renew their charter. The group recommended closing the school and brought up another option: allowing another charter to take over. That's allowed under a law passed two years ago.

The state board of education agreed with the advisory group's assessment, making it the first time the board exercised the takeover option. It's still unclear how that process would work, but the state board of education would have to approve a new charter school operator this spring, so that Community Charter School would begin next school year with a new board and new management.