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Schools

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3 private schools get no grade; 2 Fs, 1 D for charter schools

– For an unknown reason, three private schools in Fort Wayne did not receive ratings Friday from the Indiana Department of Education.

And the news wasn’t so good for some of the area’s charter schools.

Cornerstone College Preparatory School, which received an F in 2012, did not receive a grade Friday.

Indiana Department of Education officials said they could not explain why the school failed to receive a grade but said they were looking into it.

There was no answer Friday at the phone number listed on the school’s website.

Horizon Christian Academy schools, which operate on the campuses of the former Imagine MASTer Academy and Imagine Schools on Broadway, also did not receive a letter grade Friday.

One local private school – Lutheran South Unity School – received an F, falling two grades from the year prior.

Two charter schools, Thurgood Marshall Leadership Academy and Smith Academy for Excellence, each received an F.

Thomas Smith, school leader at Smith Academy for Excellence, said the F rating was unacceptable.

“This is the score assigned to us by the state in our first year of existence. It, however, is not indicative of the outstanding academic improvement our individual students made last year,” Smith said. “The score is not acceptable and will improve as we have students in consecutive years.”

Another charter school, Timothy L. Johnson Academy, received a D for the second year in a row.

Charter schools receive public funds and have instruction flexibility with the stipulation of higher accountability. The mayor of Indianapolis, a public school district or a four-year public university can issue a charter.

If non-public schools that receive state funding or state-funded voucher dollars – which are based on income – earn a D or F for two consecutive years, they will be suspended from the voucher program for incoming students for one year.

The longer a school remains at the D or F level, the more severe the sanctions.

jcrothers@jg.net

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