Organizers of a new all-girls charter school aiming to open in 2012 have been busy amassing supporters in the city of Rochester.
But they already have one high-profile local education leader behind their effort — City School District Superintendent Jean-Claude Brizard, who also happens to be married to one of the new school's would-be founders.
Brizard makes no secret of his support for charter schools, saying that he wants to help more of the privately run programs open in the city school district. Now, K. Brooke Stafford-Brizard could lead one such school, drawing students and state money away from city schools and raising questions about a potential conflict of interest. "We have the vision and the passion and we're working on the application," said Laura Rebell Gross, who is partnering with Stafford-Brizard.
Stafford-Brizard and Gross have been working with the Young Women's Leadership Network, known nationally for opening the first single-sex charter school in the country. Gross also serves on the network's Board of Directors…
Both Jean-Claude Brizard and Gross said they were trying to keep the proposal quiet until the women submitted the application. But word of the proposed school started circulating in the community after they hosted an informational meeting with a number of high-profile community leaders to try to win support for their effort several weeks ago…
The meeting occurred at the Brizards' house after the group went to see Waiting for Superman, a new documentary about the public school system that has been criticized for glorifying charter schools…
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PROPOSED ROCHESTER CHARTER SCHOOL HAS TIES TO JEAN-CLAUDE BRIZARD; November 12, 2010; Democrat and Chronicle (Rochester, NY)