Antioch School Board to consider two charter schools at Wednesday meeting

By Allen Payton

Applications for two new charter schools will be considered by the Antioch School Board at their meeting on Wednesday night. A middle school and high school are being proposed for Antioch by the organizers of the Clayton Valley High Charter School in Concord.

If approved, both the East Bay Tech Academy Antioch Middle School Charter School for 6th through 8th grades and the High School Charter School for 9th through 12th grades, plan to open in Fall 2019 at a temporary location and build their own schools on the same campus by the start of the 2020-21 school year.

The lead petitioner is Megan Moilanen, who is the current Director of Guidance and Assessment at Clayton Valley Charter High School. According to the East Bay Tech Academy website, she is “an experienced school administrator with a demonstrated history of working in independent, public and charter schools.” The co-petitioner is former AUSD Assistant Superintendent Bill Morones who has “over 30 years in education” and “has served in numerous teaching and leadership roles in public schools across the Bay Area.”

Also, according to their website, “The mission of East Bay Tech Academy is to equip every student to be college and career ready in the 21st century world. This is achieved through individualized student-centered instruction that focuses on rigor, relevance and relationships with a technology emphasis. Moreover, East Bay Tech students will develop resilient character, strong critical thinking, and collaborative skills that will prepare them for their futures.”

Their Vision and Model states, “East Bay Tech seeks to prepare its students to achieve their post-secondary goals with an emphasis on college and career readiness…equipped with 21st century skills. East Bay Tech also aspires to serve as a research and development model for the District and other public schools.”

According to the agenda, the public hearings are for information only and the determination of whether the Board will approve or deny the charter petition will be agendized for action at the May 9, 2018, meeting unless that decision date is extended by mutual agreement of the parties.

If the school board votes for the petitions, the organizers can move forward on preparing to open the schools. If they vote against the petitions, the organizers can appeal to the County Board of Education. If denied there, the petitioners can appeal to the State Board of Education, on which former Antioch teacher and State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson sits, and which has been favorable toward charter schools.

These schools, if approved, will be the second and third charter schools to locate in Antioch, following the approval of the Rocketship Charter School in 2016 which will open this fall.

Public hearings for each school petition are on the agenda under Items 9.A. and B. The  meeting begins at 7:00 p.m. in the District Office Board Room at 510 G Street or can be viewed live on the District’s YouTube page.

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One Comment to “Antioch School Board to consider two charter schools at Wednesday meeting”

  1. Liz Ritchie says:

    The schools in Antioch are failing. Continuing with the status quo is unacceptable. There is a need for paradigm shift from our School Board focusing on the demands of the teacher union and turn their focus and concern to the educational performance of their school district. The model for the public charters is based on the Clayton Valley Charter School in Clayton. The school has won awards and is acknowledged as one of the best in improving student academic and behavioral performance in the state as well as the country. Let’s join together to support improved educational opportunities for the students in the East Bay and for our local economy.

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