Gulen charter schools in Florida


STATE
# ACTIVE
# PENDING
# INACTIVE*
TOTAL
FL
8
5
3
16

* Denied, withdrawn, closed, or unknown status

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TOTAL ENROLLMENT IN 2010-2011 = 1759 STUDENTS
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SCHOOLS
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RIVER CITY SCIENCE ACADEMY
Status
ACTIVE: opened 2007
Applicant
Non-profit corporation River City Education Services, Inc. (see green box below)
Authorizer
Duval County Board of Education
Location/District
7565 Beach Blvd., Jacksonville (“Beach Campus”) / Duval County Public Schools
Website
Enrollment
Grades 6-10; 551 students in 2010-2011
Notes
The school purchases services from the Grace Institute (see blue box below).
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STARS MIDDLE SCHOOL
Status
ACTIVE: opened 2007
Applicant
Non-profit corporation Stars Education Services, Inc. (see green box below)
Authorizer
Leon County Schools Board of Education
Location/District
1500 Miccosukee Rd., Tallahassee / Leon County Schools
Website
Enrollment
Grades 6-8; 181 students in 2010-2011
Notes
Originally located at 1234 Blountstown Hwy., Tallahassee. The school purchases services from the Grace Institute (see blue box below).
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ORLANDO SCIENCE SCHOOL
(originally called Discovery Academy of Science)
Status
ACTIVE: opened 2008
Applicant
Non-profit corporation Discovery Education Services, Inc. (see green box below)
Authorizer
Orange County School Board
Location/District
2427 Lynx Lane, Orlando / Orange County Public Schools
Website
Enrollment
Grades 6-9; 425 students in 2010-2011
Notes
In 2005, Discovery Education Services (DES) submitted an application for the “Discovery Academy of Science.” With the district recommending a denial, DES withdrew its application before the school board’s vote. In 2006, DES submitted another application which the school board later denied (10/2006). DES appealed this decision to the State Board of Education and won (2/2007), after which the district approved its application (6/2007). DES requested, and was granted, a one-year extension for its school which it had now renamed the “Orlando Science School.”

The school purchases services from the Grace Institute (see blue box below).
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SWEETWATER BRANCH ACADEMY
Status
ACTIVE: opened 2008
Applicant
Non-profit corporation Neosprings, Inc. (see green box below)
Authorizer
School Board of Alachua County
Location/District
1000 NE 16 Ave. Bldg C., Gainesville / Alachua County Public Schools
Website
Enrollment
Grades 6-9; 124 students in 2010-2011
Notes
SWBA is founded by some University of Florida professors and educators.” The school purchases services from the Grace Institute (see blue box below).
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NEW SPRINGS MIDDLE SCHOOL
Status
ACTIVE: opened 2010
Applicant
Non-profit corporation New Springs, Inc. (see green box below)
Authorizer
School Board of Hillsborough County
Location/District
2410 E. Busch Blvd., Tampa / Hillsborough County Public School
Website
Enrollment
Grades 6-7; 113 students in 2010-2011
Notes
In 2007, a five-year contract for this school was approved; it was terminated in 2009 because the school never opened. A second application was approved in 5/2010. The school purchases services from the Grace Institute (see blue box below).
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RIVER CITY SCIENCE ACADEMY – ELEMENTARY
Status
ACTIVE: opened 2010
Applicant
Non-profit corporation River City Education Services, Inc. (see green box below)
Authorizer/Term
Duval County Board of Education; five-year contract approved
Location/District
3266 Southside Blvd., Jacksonville (“Southside Campus”) / Duval County Public Schools
Website
Enrollment
Grades K-5; 219 students in 2010-2011
Notes
To expand grades beyond the middle school. The application was approved in 11/2009. The school purchases services from the Grace Institute (see blue box below).
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SWEETWATER BRANCH ACADEMY – ELEMENTARY
Status
ACTIVE: opened 2010
Applicant
Non-profit corporation Neosprings, Inc. (see green box below)
Authorizer
School Board of Alachua County
Location/District
1000 NE 16 Ave. Bldg C., Gainesville / Alachua County Public Schools
Website
Enrollment
Grades K-5; 146 students in 2010-2011
Notes
To expand grades beyond the middle school. Final enrollment will be ~600 students. The school purchases services from the Grace Institute (see blue box below).
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NEW SPRINGS ELEMENTARY SCHOOL
Status
ACTIVE: opened 2011
Applicant
Non-profit corporation New Springs, Inc. (see green box below)
Authorizer/Term
School District of Hillsborough County; four-year contract
Location/District
2410 E. Busch Blvd., Tampa / Hillsborough County Public School
Website
Enrollment
Grades K-5
Notes
To expand grades beyond the middle school. The school purchases services from the Grace Institute (see blue box below).
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BROWARD MATH AND SCIENCE SCHOOL
Status
PENDING: approved on 5/12/2012
Applicant
Non-profit corporation Riverside Science, Inc. (see green box below)
Authorizer
School Board of Broward County
Location/District
6101 NW 31st St. Margate / Broward County Public Schools (Ft. Lauderdale)
Website
Enrollment
Grades K-12; est. maximum enrollment of 1200 students
Notes
Approved 11/9/2010, but withdrawn 6/21/2011. On 3/20/2012, the district approved a $375,000 federal planning grant for the charter school. In 5/2012, the school  was approved for the second time.
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DISCOVERY ACADEMY OF SCIENCE (formerly Pinellas School of Math and Science)
Status
PENDING: approved on 6/12/2012
Applicant
Non-profit corporation Galaxy Education, Inc. (see green box below)
Authorizer/Term
School Board of Pinellas County / 5-year agreement
Location/District
Undetermined location / Pinellas County School District
Enrollment
Grades K-8, poss. up to K-12; enrollment of 600 students, poss. up to 1000
Notes
The district approved a $350,000 charter school planning grant on 3/16/2012.
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MIAMI-DADE SCIENCE SCHOOLS
Status
PENDING: approved on 11/24/2010; initial year 2012-2013
Applicant
Non-profit corporation Sweetwater Education, Inc. (see green box below)
Authorizer
School Board of Miami-Dade County
Location/District
? / Miami-Dade County Public Schools
Enrollment
Grades K-8; 900 students max.
Notes
No recent activity
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ORLANDO SCIENCE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL
Status
PENDING: approved on 11/8/2011; planning to open fall 2012
Applicant
Non-profit corporation Discovery Education Services, Inc. (see green box below)
Authorizer
Orange County School Board
Location/District
2427 Lynx Lane, Orlando / Orange County Public Schools
Website
Enrollment
Grades K-5; up to 600 students
Notes
To expand grades beyond the middle school; joining the middle/high school site
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PALM BEACH SCIENCE ACADEMY
Status
PENDING: approved on 11/24/2010; initial year 2012-2013
Applicant
Non-profit corporation Palm Beach Science, Inc. (see green box below)
Authorizer
School Board of Palm Beach County
Location/District
? / Palm Beach County Public Schools
Enrollment
Grades 6-12; 900 students max.
Notes
This is the second charter school application submitted by Palm Beach Science, Inc. The first application for a school interchangeably called Palm Beach School of Science and Palm Beach Science Academy was denied in 11/2007. During that effort, Fulton Science Academy in Georgia was described as a “sister school.” In 3/2012 the district recommended a $375,000 charter school planning grant.
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ATLANTIC SCIENCE ACADEMY
Status
APPROVED in 11/2004 but never opened
Applicant
Non-profit corporation Sweetwater Education, Inc. (see green box below)
Authorizer/Term
School Board of Miami-Dade County; ten-year term
Location/District
635 Anastasia Ave., Coral Gables / Miami-Dade County Public Schools
Enrollment
Grades 6-12; 840 students max.
Notes
Originally called Miami-Dade Charter Middle and High School. Application was approved by the school board in 11/2004. In 3/2005, the name was changed to Atlantic Science Academy. In 6/2005, Sweetwater Education requested and was granted an amendment to defer the opening, but the school never opened.
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RIVERSIDE SCIENCE ACADEMY
Status
DENIED in 11/2009
Applicant
Non-profit corporation Riverside Science, Inc. (see green box below)
Authorizer
Broward County Public Schools school board
Location/District
Intended site at 8200 South Palm Drive, Pembroke Pines / Broward County Public Schools
Enrollment
Unknown
Notes
This school was still featured in the Broward County Public Schools Parent Guide 2009-2010. Emre Akbaba is associated w/school as principal.
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OSCEOLA UNIVERSAL SCHOOL
Status
DENIED in 10/2006
Applicant
Non-profit corporation Universal Education Services d/b/a Osceola Universal Schools
Authorizer
School Board of Osceola County
Location/District
Kissimmee area / School District of Osceola County
Enrollment
Grades 6-12; 840 students max.
Notes
The applicant appealed the school board’s denial decision to the State. The Charter School Appeal Commission recommended denying the appeal. However, the State Board rejected the recommendation and granted the appeal, overturning the district’s application denial. The School Board of Osceola appealed that decision. The Fifth District Court of Appeal ruled in favor of the district in late 2008.
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NON-PROFIT CORPORATION CHARTER HOLDERS
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DISCOVERY EDUCATION SERVICES, INC.
Fed. Tax ID
EIN = 205773949
Individuals involved
Incorporated on 8/26/2005 by Omer Tezel, Mustafa Ince, and Mehmet F. Taskan. Other associated individuals are Dllaver [sic Dilovar] Usmanov, Ersan Songur, Fatih Demiroz, Gokhan Ozgur, Julie Oliver (AKA Julie O. Colak), Melissa Palmer, Orhan Karahan, Sirin Coskun, Tahir Duzyol, Ugur Baslanti, and Yusuf Sert.
Notes
Loans totaling $86,127 in 2007 from Usmanov ($25K), Taskan ($36,145), Baslanti ($14,982), and Sert ($10K).
Schools
1. Orlando Science School (originally called Discovery Academy of Science)
2. Orlando Science Elementary School
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GALAXY EDUCATION, INC.
Fed. Tax ID
EIN = 453533747
Individuals involved
Incorporated on 7/28/2011 by Sirin Coskun, Fatih Demir, Derya Yildirim, Shemzi Balla, and Ezgi Caliskan.
School
1. Discovery Academy of Science (originally called Pinellas School of Math and Science)
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NEOSPRINGS, INC.
Fed. Tax ID
EIN = 431999055
Individuals involved
Incorporated on 2/16/2003 by Fatih Gordu. Other associated individuals are Arjet Gega, Aydin Alptekinoglu, Deniz Tekin, Dundar Yilmaz, Emer Yasun,
Fethi Goktepe, Murat Cetin, Oguzhan Topsakal, Tamer Kahveci, and Ugur Baslanti.
Notes
Neosprings, Inc., dba Sweetwater Branch Academy. Loans totaling $28K in 2007 from Baslanti ($20K), Gordu ($3K), Kahveci ($3K), Gega ($2K).
Schools
1. Sweetwater Branch Academy
2. Sweetwater Branch Academy Elementary
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NEW SPRINGS, INC.
Fed. Tax ID
EIN = 204248193
Individuals involved
Incorporated on 7/25/2006 by Ismail Guvenc, Serkan Ozek, and Necmettin Yildirim. Other associated individuals are Bishop Charles Leigh, Chris Hamlett, Dogan Tozoglu, Emre Akbaba, Erdem Onsal, Hasan Basri Celebi, Huseyin Arslan, Ilbey Budak, Miguel A. Labrador, Mustafa G. Sahin, Serkan Gunpinar, Tevfik Yucek, and Yalcin Akin.
Notes
Leigh participated in a Turkish Cultural Center-Tampa trip to Turkey. Hamlett “... has 2 known relationships including Seher Demeril-Hamlett and Mehmet Demeril...” (CorporationWiki.com).

Loans totaling $558,680 in 2008 from Yucek ($20,960), Guvenc ($13,000), Onsal ($4,620), Gunpinar ($100), and Sema Education Agency ($520,000, see blue box below). New Springs, Inc. and the Sirius Foundation, d.b.a. Istanbul Cultural Center of Tampa Bay have the same address on some Form 990s (6210 Sheldon Road, Apt. 2706, Tampa).
Schools
1. New Springs Middle School
2. New Springs Elementary School
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PALM BEACH SCIENCE, INC.
Fed. Tax ID
EIN = 800670766
Individuals involved
Incorporated on 6/15/2007 by Yasar Burak Savak. Other associated individuals are Abdul Bagci (poss. AKA Yasin Bagci), Burak Erkuloglu, Dogan Tozoglu. Fwat (sic Fuat) Sen, Rasim Cinar, Renat Shaykhutdinov, Stacey Erbay, Yalcin Akin, and Yusuf Demirelli.
Notes
Bagci “worked for Sema Education, Inc.” (see blue box below) and “has been working for Coral Springs Foundation (=Anatolia Cultural Center).”
School
1. Palm Beach Science Academy a.k.a. Palm Beach School of Science
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RIVER CITY EDUCATION SERVICES, INC.
Fed. Tax ID
EIN = 205773949
Individuals involved
Incorporated on 6/12/2006 by Selcuk Buyuksarac. Other associated individuals are Abdulbasit Aydin, Adem Dokmeci, Ahmet Birdal, Angeline T. Romero, Dave Andrus, Dogan Tozoglu, Elizabeth Dorrian, Enes Calik, Sinan Turkel, and Tonja/Tonya Boswell (Note: Angeline Romero is married to Selcuk Buyuksarac).
Schools
1. River City Science Academy
2. River City Science Academy – Elementary
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RIVERSIDE SCIENCE, INC.
Fed. Tax ID
EIN = 261453559
Individuals involved
Incorporated on 6/22/2007 by Ferhat Erkan. Other associated individuals are Hasan Kaya, Ibrahim Yildiz, Ilby Budak, Renat Shaykhutdinov, and Stacey Erbay (married to Ali Erbay – see Sweetwater Education).
Schools
1. Broward Math and Science School
2. Riverside Science Academy
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STARS  EDUCATION SERVICES, INC.
Fed. Tax ID
EIN = 201343297
Individuals involved
Incorporated on 6/23/2004 by Yalcin Akin. Other associated individuals are A. Samet Kul, Arif Dagli, Bill Gladwin, Dogan Tozoglu, Mesut Kovankaya, Natalie M. Provo, Necati Aydin, and Zeki Ademir (note: Gladwin is the recipient of at least one of the Gulen movement’s free, guided trips to Turkey, via the Tallahassee Tolerance and Dialogue Group at FSU;  Provo died in 2010. Her obituary stated, ” In her last years, her life was enriched by the many friends she made in the Turkish community in Tallahassee and Auburn.”).
School
1. Stars Middle School
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SWEETWATER EDUCATION, INC.
Fed. Tax ID
EIN = 201181159
Individuals involved
Incorporated on 2/21/2003 by Cengiz Alacaci. Other associated individuals are Abdukyasin Bagci, Ali S. Erbay, Banu S. Yildiz, Elvan Aktas, Etem Oksayoglu, Halil Kutlu Erol, Isa Afacan, Mehmet Y. Ulutas, Mustafa Utku, Nezih Pala, Omer A. Zeyrek, Unal Coban, Vakkas Koca, and Yalcin Akin.
Schools
1. Atlantic Science Academy
2. Miami-Dade Science Schools
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UNIVERSAL EDUCATION SERVICES, INC.
d/b/a Osceola Universal Schools.
Fed. Tax ID
EIN = 204357591
Individuals involved
Incorporated on 2/22/2006 by Mehmet Taskan. Other associated individual are Gia Songur, Harun Sahbaz, Mustafa Ince, and Reina Sabio. Dissolved by Mehmet F. Taskan on 4/30/2012.
Schools
1. Osceola Universal School, sometimes written Osceola Universal Charter School
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SERVICE PROVIDERS
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GRACE INSTITUTE FOR EDUCATIONAL RESEARCH & RESOURCES (AKA GRACE SCHOOLS)
FEI/EIN Number
EIN = 262674420
Website/Address
http://graceschools.us/, “5755 Nortpoint [sic] Pkwy, Suite 1, Alpharetta, GA
Services
From the 2010 brochure: “Membership is a contractual agreement where a candidate school Governing Board adopts the Grace Institute standards and pays a per-pupil fee to partake in the Institute’s activities and to benefit from membership services.” Services listed: “Professional development workshops for new administrator and faculty; Standards based teaching, assessment, and evaluation support; Budget development support; Marketing, recruitment, and enrollment support; Curriculum development research and support; Accreditation standards support; Operations support.”
Individuals involved
Board members on 990s for 2007, 2008, 2009: Ali Ozer, Kenar Sener, Namik Sercan, Selim Ozdemir, and Yucel Aktas; w/books in care of Avni Cokavci and Ilbey Budak [see Occonee Science Academy above; probably Ismailcem Budak Arpinar]
Notes
All member schools are in the Gulen movement-identified charter school network. Previously appearing on website: “Current members include these two original schools [FSA Middle and High] as well as (in order of their opening years) Stars Middle School, River City Science Academy Middle and High School, Orlando Science Middle and High School, Sweetwater Branch Academy Middle and High School, New Springs Middle School, Fulton Sunshine Academy Elementary School, River City Science Academy Elementary School, and Sweetwater Branch Academy Elementary School.”
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SEMA EDUCATION & HEALTH DEVELOPMENT
 (AKA SEMA Education Agency or Sema Education, Inc.)
Fed. Tax ID
EIN unknown
Website/Address
None / 560 Lexington Avenue 16th Floor New York, NY
Services
Provides very large loans to Gulen charter school operators ($332K in GA, $520K in FL)
Individuals involved
Melih Yildirim of Sema signed the letter of forgiveness for the balance of $166,000 plus interest for its loan to Fulton Educational Services, Inc. (the non-profit operating Gulen charter schools in Georgia) http://gulencharterschools.weebly.com/uploads/4/5/1/3/4513391/letter_from_the_lender.pdf
Notes
Little is knows about this organization. Its address and phone number is shared with both the Turkish Cultural Center-Manhattan and the Council of Turkic American Associations.
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ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
Read about the Grace Institute and related Gulen charter schools in Florida @ http://gulencharterschools.weebly.com/florida-schools-orlando-river-city-sweetwater-stars-new-springs.html

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

That damn freedom sure is messy! You get failure, human intervention, success - hell its almost like someone let free will out the bag while the teachers unions weren't looking. Quick shut down freedom to save government "schools"