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Charter school’s 2018 opening in doubt, School Board says

RESERVE — St. John the Baptist Parish School Board members, along with attorneys working for the Board, said it is unlikely a recently approved charter school could open in time for the 2018-19 academic year.

The opinions were expressed this morning during the Board’s executive committee meeting and do not reflect a final agreement or ruling.

School Board members said the issue would again be addressed in a public setting during Superintendent Kevin George’s report Thursday evening in front of the full School Board.

It is believed at that time a contract could be introduced, pending necessary local and federal approvals, that would authorize a charter school to open in St. John the Baptist Parish for the 2019-20 academic year.

The St. John Parish Public School Board previously approved Louisiana Premier Charter School as a Type I Charter, kick-starting a limited partnership between the entities in which each signs a Type I Charter Contract.

When agreed to, the charter school would function as a public school operating in St. John Parish. The two entities have negotiated on and off since June to come to an agreement on grade structure, student demographics and facility location.

As of this week, a final agreement has not been reached locally, which then must gain federal approval before the new school can begin.

Louisiana Premier has a tentative agreement to operate at 3556 W. Airline Highway through a lease from Lifehouse Church — where Reserve Christian used to operate — a site that includes 18.6 acres, three classroom buildings, gymnasium, kitchen and cafeteria.