On behalf of Alison Thorstad, Chair of the Lionsgate Academy Board of Directors, I am posting an urgent and important message concerning a proposed hearing that will affect charter schools in Minnesota. D.Halpin
Hello Lionsgate Community,
As you know, Lionsgate Academy is a member of the Minnesota Association of Charter Schools, MACS. On Friday, we received an e-mail from the director Eugene Piccolo (click here), requesting that we disseminate this information to our community. Please take a moment to read over the attached paperwork. It is unclear how this proposal would impact Lionsgate, as we are under 124D.10 to accept by lottery and therefore cannot desegregate without violating the law that governs enrollment of charter schools with waiting lists. It is somewhat alarming that Lionsgate Academy is specifically cited as an example of a charter school not reflecting the racial composition of the surrounding district in Mr. Orefield’s cover letter. He fails to mention the lottery enrollment law.
In the case of the MDE amendment, the cause for concern is the side-stepping of the legislature in enacting the law. If MDE is successful in having the power to put in place its agenda for de-segregating charters due to race, it is not inconceivable that they might also mandate a desegregation of students due to disability at a future time.
I think it is important to remember that no child is assigned or placed into a charter school. Parents/guardians may choose to enroll their child into a charter school if they feel that their family member would be best served there. To date, all laws regarding de segregation exclude charter schools simply because of parental choice.
Please read the e-mail and attachments carefully. If this causes concern for you, I would advocate that you write to Judge Pust, expressing your views. The deadline for comments is July 8th. There will be no public comments at this meeting. Written testimony may only be offered. Please remember that your letter is important. One of the things the court looks at is the number of people who take the time to make their voice known, alongside their concerns. As the Lionsgate Community spans many districts, it might also be important to include your legislators in any comments that you wish to make.
- 1 – 4 10 15 Petition to Comm of Ed for Amendment of a Rule unter Minn Stat 14-091
- 2 – 4 10 15 Exhibit A Proposed Amendment to Rule 3535
- 3 – 4 10 15 Exibit B Resolution of the City Council of BC
- 5 – 4 10 15 Exhibit C Memorandum in Support of Petition to Amend MN Rule 3535
If you have questions, please email either Diane Halpin or myself.
Thank you for taking time out of this beautiful Minnesota summer,
Alicen Thorstad, Chair
Lionsgate Board of Directors