Charter school mistake forces fourth graders out

Charter school mistake forces fourth graders out (Image 1)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Three weeks into the school year, some Metro parents are being told they have to find a new school for their children.

Friday will be the last day for 35 fourth graders at Nashville's newest charter school, Nashville Global Academy.

The school, already on probation after students were forced to wait hours for a ride home on the first day of school, has violated its charter by allowing a class of fourth graders.

The school opened its doors for the first time in August.

Metro Schools said Nashville Global Academy was only authorized to teach kindergarten through third grade for its first year.

“It seems there was a misunderstanding, but all of the documentations and paperwork clearly shows it was for kindergarten through third,” said schools' spokesperson Olivia Brown.

Metro officials learned of the violation while looking into the problems with transportation the school had on the first day of classes.

The school's principal, Dr. Edwina Hanby, told News 2 she believed the school had permission to add the fourth grade class.

“It is unfortunate and a misunderstanding but the Metro board made its decision and the school will work with parents of those children to find new schools,” she said, declining to place blame on anyone.

“I don't want to put fault,” she added.  “It's unfortunate for the students and families who've been impacted.”

Parents of the fourth grade students learned their options at a meeting at the school Thursday night.

Many parents were frustrated, confused and angry and not any happier with the options given to them for new schools for their children.

They were presented with the options and then asked make a choice and sign a document, but the parents noticed many of the choices were failing schools.

One upset parent at the meeting said, “A lot of these schools on here, I can't say I want her to go to any of them to be completely honest.”

Another parent said, “We are not signing. We will be at the mayor's office in the morning.”

Many parents had rushed to get their children enrolled at the school, hoping it would offer a competitive education, but now they say the students are the ones who will lose in the end if they are moved. 

The children seem to be happy at Global Academy.

Fourth grader Stasha Thaxton told News 2, “I like everything about this school, so I really don't have a favorite thing. It's just so fun. I don't want to leave because I love this school so much.”

The school board did have the authority to allow the fourth graders to remain at Global Academy and voted against doing so.

The children's last day at Global Academy is Friday, and they will report to their new schools on Monday.

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