A Highland Park charter school is facing allegations of financial impropriety, gross mismanagement and academic shortcomings from a group of former employees and parents who formerly enrolled their children at the school…The story of an embattled charter school facing the school board and the court of public opinion has emerged several times in the last year. Nearly all such schools have survived, whether the issue was low test scores, admission practices, questionable accounting or an unorthodox curriculum. Charters are independently run schools that are free from some regulations that govern traditional schools.
Most of Academia Avance's critics are closely associated with the school's founding. They include a former principal, former teachers, former office workers and parents.They describe a poorly organized school that churned through staff and a director who was never short on plans to increase revenue but was perpetually short on resources for students."It was an amazing opportunity for an inner-city area and an incredible idea, but it was run very poorly," said former English teacher Tiffany Miller. "We had no school supplies. There was no working air-conditioning or heating. There were broken windows. Very little supervision."…Of the school's five initial teachers, Miller and one other finished the year before quitting, she said. Much of the school year involved a procession of substitutes and short-term hires. The substitutes allegedly included the school's founder and director, Ricardo Mireles, office staff and parent volunteers…
"Critics assail director of L.A. charter." Los Angeles Times (CA), 9/25/2007