Families rally to save local charter schools

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SAN DIEGO — Parents and students of the Thrive charter school group rallied at Skateworld in Linda Vista Thursday evening, hoping the fate of their schools would share the same recent success of the roller rink.

While San Diego City Council recently voted to reject the sale of Skateworld to a developer, Thrive schools still hang in the balance. Every five years, charters need to be renewed. In November 2018, the San Diego school board voted unanimously to deny that renewal.

The State Education Department advised the state board to deny the renewal as well, largely due to Thrive’s low test scores. In March 2019, the state board didn’t have enough votes for an official decision on the charters.

“They kind of left us in limbo. They didn’t say yes, they didn’t say no. That means our charter is expiring because they didn’t choose to vote yes,” said Thrive parent Elizabeth Bowe.

Bowe, along with nearly 1,000 kids and families, are now hoping the state board will reconsider and vote again. So far, there’s been no word back from the state board, meaning the SDUSD school board decision stands.

The San Diego Unified School District has already helped place about 170 kids in new schools for the fall, and district officials say at this point there is no plan to reconsider its stance on renewing Thrive’s charter. If nothing changes, Thrive’s charter will expire in June.

“My hope is we can keep Thrive alive in our community,” said Christopher Poblete, another Thrive parent.

Parents have vowed to keep fighting to keep the school open. They’ve started an petition on change.org hoping to get the attention of state leaders.

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