Crown Ridge Academy

“San Bernardino charter school shut down.” San Bernardino Sun (CA), 9/19/2012

SAN BERNARDINO - More than 100 students who had been attending a charter school for at-risk children stayed home Wednesday, and they won't be going to Crown Ridge Academy ever again.

Neither will the school's teachers, all of whom the charter school director says are owed months of pay without a clear path to collect that money.

The board of the San Bernardino City Unified School District, which allowed the school to open in 2009, revoked the charter Tuesday night after determining that there was no realistic way for the school to dig itself out of a deep financial hole...

A big chunk of the school's problems came from spending a large grant twice, [board president, Steven Bielinski] said, and officials made other mistakes, but those people have been replaced...

It might be worth taking a risk on money coming in if the school were producing good academic results, but its test scores are far below those of other district schools that also serve English-learning students, said board member Judi Penman.

Crown Ridge is the latest charter school in the district to face potential shutdown.

Casa Ramona Academy lost 100 students beginning in the 2010-11 school after complaints of physical problems, inadequate instruction for English learners and classes that didn't qualify students for admission to state universities.

And the Public Safety Academy faced years of complaints about fiscal mismanagement and cronyism until that charter school's founder was removed from the board.

The district approved five-year extensions to the charters of both schools this spring.

[Board member Margaret Hill] worried this could be another stain on the reputation of the district and the city...

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