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New formula keeps more dollars in schools; ACSA to manage Karr, Harte through next year

The Algiers Charter School Association board met March 22 to discuss a new formula for capping the administrative fee it retains from state funds awarded to the schools it manages.

Under the previous formula, the association’s central office could retain up to 8.65 percent of a school’s Minimum Foundation Program allocation (the per-student amount allotted by the state) plus the school’s “special revenues,” such as teacher incentive funds and the like. To date, the association’s central office has never needed more than 5.5 percent of that money.

The new formula approved by the board would allow the association’s central office to tap up to 10 percent of Minimum Foundation Program dollars, but none of the special revenues. The bottom line reduces the central office’s take and leaves more money at the schoolhouse level.

The board released a statement explaining the new change:

“The policy change for central office allocation is designed to provide more resources to schools for the 2012-2013 academic year…In light of the various projected economic challenges for schools next year, this change will allow schools to keep more revenue in the classroom.”

The board also approved several large contracts, including an E-Rate contract with Interlock for network equipment. E-Rate contracts are given through a government application, allowing schools to purchase technology equipment at 10 percent of its price.

The board also announced Thursday night it will be operating Edna Karr Charter High School and Alice M. Harte Charter School through the next academic year to allow more time for the transition of the schools back to direct management by the Orleans Parish School Board. The board said it will meet regularly with staff and the public to ensure better communication in the future.

Finally, the nominating committee announced it is in the process of selecting two new board members to replace those whose terms are ending this year. They expect to announce the new members at the May meeting.

Just under 50 people were present, including the principals of ACSA schools.

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