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Board taking steps to open two new schools on Carver campus

The board of Collegiate Academies met Wednesday night to discuss plans for the new George Washington Carver campus and to announce the approval of a building plan for Sci Academy’s permanent facility on its current location.

Only one night before the board meeting, the Louisiana Board of Elementary and Secondary Education (BESE) approved the Recovery School District to hire the architecture firm of Rozas Ward to build the long-awaited school building that will house Sci Academy on Read Blvd.

The board also discussed plans for their two new schools, opening this year on the former George Washington Carver campus. To maintain Carver’s legacy, the new schools will be called George Washington Carver Collegiate Academy and George Washington Carver Preparatory Academy. Additionally, the Louisiana High School Athletic Association announced all schools on the Carver campus will be allowed to play as one team—the Rams. This unusual allowance is important for current Carver senior athletes hoping to impress college scouts and to maintain the school’s legacy as a football powerhouse.

Staff orientation at the new schools begins July 15, with the first students arriving Aug. 13.

A focus group of Carver alumni met with the board to discuss the new names and will help make other important decisions leading up to the schools’ opening.

The board also approved the budget for the 2012-2013 school year, with a fiscal year beginning July 1. Only small additions were made, removing some uncertain revenue opportunities, such as a grant from New Schools for New Orleans, which the finance committee has not been able to guarantee yet. The grant includes both expected revenue and expenses, which have been removed from the budget.

“Removing these things makes a more conservative budget,” said Salmon Shomade, finance committee member.

To follow up with their first graduating class, the board has hired a Director of College Persistence, who will work to ensure that all alumni have assistance meeting college deadlines and finding support to stay in school.

The meeting ended in an executive session to discuss CEO Ben Marcovitz’s contract. Board members Doug Finegan, Emily Morris, and Ben Marcovitz were absent. Diana Lewis and Ana Menezes attended via telephone conference call.

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