On Wednesday, June 20, the Capistrano Unified School District took the extreme step of voting to move forward on a proposal to close the highest performing school in the district. Oxford Preparatory Academy, a public charter school, was recently recognized as a California Distinguished School - a distinction earned by only 2% of elementary schools in the state - and has a long waiting list of students who wish to attend. CUSD could vote as early as July 25 to revoke this highly successful school's charter.
If the school, by the CUSD board's own admission, is doing an outstanding job educating students then why are they trying to revoke the charter? Because of financial missteps made years ago by people no longer associated with the school. Mistakes that the current administration and board of the school have remedied so that they can't happen again. The new administration is also actively and aggressively fighting the legal battles necessary to recoup those funds for the benefit of the students and protection of taxpayers. Closing the school would make it much more difficult to recoup these funds.
At the CUSD board meeting on June 20, the board heard hours of testimony from parents, students, teachers and others in support of the school. Not a single person spoke in favor of closing it. Yet the board seems intent on punishing current students and parents for the actions of people no longer associated with the school and who are being actively pursued to make amends.
Revoking a school's charter is the most extreme measure a district can take against a charter school. It's the "nuclear option" intended only to be used when that school is failing its students. It's clear that revocation in this case is unwarranted, extreme and shortsighted and will only cause harm to 800 students and their families.
Sign the petition to let the CUSD board know you OPPOSE closing the district's highest performing school!