Steamboat Springs Discussions regarding a potential north Routt charter school are still taking place behind closed doors.
Because the School Board could potentially negotiate a contract with a group of north Routt County residents interested in starting such a school, an in-depth discussion of the issue took place in executive session during a board study session Monday night.
"We've come to a consensus that we're not ready to go to the public with anything," School Board member Matt Hermes said.
Proponents of a charter school fear that disclosing all the details of discussion would lead to misrepresentation of their goals and objectives, School Board members said.
The amount of background homework necessary to fully understand the issues at hand could lead to such misunderstanding, and it takes a good amount of work for the board itself to keep updated, board member Millie Beall said.
A group of north Routt residents had formed two committees, the North Routt Community School Board and the North Routt Community School Accountability Committee, to provide an educational alternative by establishing a charter school.
In its application to the RE-2 School Board, the north Routt group stated its vision is to have children achieve their highest potential in a setting concurrent with the countryside and historical significance of the area.
"The School Board has to act on this application," Hermes said.
The board can reject it, accept it or accept it with contingencies.
The proposed charter would be a three-year contract from August 2000 to June 2003, and would cap at 15 kindergarten to third-grade students. The school could potentially expand to include students as old as eighth grade. The charter group is also requesting 95 percent of per pupil funding from the school district.
Per pupil funding is estimated at $5,880 for the 20001-2001 year, according to a preliminary budget adopted by the board this month.
A drop in enrollment in the Steamboat schools could mean less funding for existing programs and faculty.
The charter group is asking for district funding to cover its special education administration, liability insurance, payroll functions and transportation to and from school.
The School Board plans to vote on the application at its next meeting on Monday.
The meeting will be held at the George P. Sauer Human Services Center the old junior high and is open to the public.
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