Charter school in Metairie, La., will close

Charter school in Metairie, La., will close

Uncertain if its charter will be renewed, International School of Louisiana votes to close its Jefferson Parish campus at the end of the school year.

The International School of Louisiana, a language-immersion charter program, has decided not to seek a renewal of its charter for its Jefferson Parish campus in Metairie.

The decision means that more than 400 students will have to find a new school.

The school says in a letter to parents that it will continue to operate three campuses in New Orleans, and that students now attending the Metairie location may continue at one of the other locations if they choose.

The charter for the Metairie campus, housed in the former Bunche Middle School, expires at the end of June. Students are taught in either Spanish or French.

The New Orleans Advocate reports that school officials announced their decision to close the campus at a special board meeting. Melanie Tennyson, CEO and head of school, says the board's decision came after months of failed attempts to communicate with the Jefferson Parish School Board about renewing the charter.

The Jefferson Parish School Board had told the charter program two years ago that it did not intend to renew the lease for the Bunche building. The International School asked to be allowed to use the building for one more year while it continues to search, but it did not receive any response.

School officials also have tried to find another facility, but with no success.

Chantell Reed, board president, says the lack of a building and of a new charter agreement aren’t the only reasons for the campus’ shuttering. The school has been running at a deficit for four of the past five years, which is a “major consideration” for school officials.

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