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Crescent Leadership Academy fails to reach a quorum as it meets by phone

The board of Crescent Leadership Academy met by teleconference Tuesday, but only two of five current board members participated.

Without a quorum of members present, the board took up no action items at the meeting.

Chief Financial Officer C. J. Bower walked the board through the school’s financial outlook.

The board is currently over $145,000 short of its year-to-date budget, according to figures provided to the board.

Bower explained to board members that costs were high in many areas, since they involved one-time purchases, like instructional supplies, that spiked early in the year but would not require much replacement as the year goes on.

Education Director Tracy Joseph said the school and state Department of Education officials have a difference of opinion about how many Crescent Leadership students qualify for special education services.

Joseph said that the school had identified 28 students with special education needs, while the Department of Education says there are only 11.

Bower said that the difference amounts to about $100,000 in funding the school would receive since the government provides additional dollars to fund the higher costs associated with teaching special education students.

Crescent Leadership Academy isn’t the only school to report conflicts with the Recovery School District this year involving special education funding. School leaders at Friends of King board members have also complained that they are responsible for more special education students at Joseph A. Craig Charter School than state figures show.

These discrepancies force charters to have their students re-evaluated.

Transportation was over budget by over $18,000. Bower said that some of that is due to the fact that the school is picking up students from around the city who have transferred to the school after being expelled from other campuses.

Leaders said about 60 percent of the students fell into that category at the start of the year. Officials differentiated these students from what they called “choice” students, whose families had actually chosen to enroll them at the school.

Joseph also gave board members an update on the progress of finding a new building for Crescent Leadership Academy. The school’s current location is within portable units on the site of the former Carver High School. The organization’s current lease expires on December 31.

Joseph said that officials had identified a three-story building within Dillard’s Gentilly campus that would serve as a good home for the school, but the school was still in discussions with Dillard officials.

Present were board members Marlin Ford and Judge Helen Berrigan. Principal Chauncey Nash, Dean of Students Charmain Carter and Rites of Passage Board Liaison Nancey Carter.

The 4:30 p.m. meeting ended at 5:22p.m.

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  • nickelndime

    Too many non-teaching personnel (chiefs), not enough…well, it’s not just the indians who/that which are lacking in this situation. Board has trouble meeting? – not even over the phone? Guess when the judge asked why administrative budgets ($$$,$$$.$$) were “over” and the instructional budget was “under,” it might have struck a nerve with some of the other board members? (Like, is this a rich board or is this a poor board? Will this add to my resume’ or will it detract from it?,,,) I really would like to see how this plays out…is this the kind of charter school that Dillard wants on its Gentilly campus?