Charter school backers to address board

SUWANEE - Several people, including the lead proponent of a proposed all-girls charter school, have signed up to address the Gwinnett County Board of Education during its Thursday meeting.

The board voted last month to reject the proposal to open Ivy Preparatory Academy. A response and revision of the charter school proposal submitted to board members and Gwinnett County Public Schools staff is still under review, said Sloan Roach, school district spokeswoman.

Nina Gilbert, the lead proponent of the charter school, said she signed up early Monday morning to speak at the board's regular monthly meeting.

Charter school proponents have requested to receive feedback from school officials on the revised proposal, but Gilbert said the only correspondence received as of Monday afternoon was a letter stating there were no questions.

Some schools in the Meadowcreek cluster that have failed to meet federal education standards must offer students the choice to transfer to another school in the district, and Gilbert said denying the proposal to create Ivy Preparatory Academy could be denying students one choice that may be beneficial.

The proponents of Ivy Preparatory Academy have created a proposal that comes from more than two years of research and is modeled after high-performing institutions, Gilbert said.

"We're considering all our options and looking at every available opportunity to make sure our school opens for 108 students (sixth-grade girls) in 2008," she said.

Gilbert will speak during the board's 7 p.m. meeting Thursday. Residents can also address the board at 6:30 p.m., immediately before the monthly business meeting.

The board's monthly work session will begin at 3 p.m. Thursday. Meetings are held in the Instructional Support Center at 437 Old Peachtree Road in Suwanee.

The complete agenda can be viewed online at www.gwinnett.k12.ga.us.

SideBar: If You Go

' What: Gwinnett Board of Education monthly meeting

' When: 7 p.m. Thursday

' Where: 437 Old Peachtree Road NW, Suwanee

' For more information: View the complete agenda at www.gwinnett.k12.ga.us.