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Atlanta Public Schools has granted a five-year extension to the charters of three local schools following the December 4, 2023 board meeting.

ATLANTA — Atlanta Public Schools has granted a five-year extension to the charters of three local schools following the December 4, 2023 board meeting.

Centennial Academy, Atlanta Classical Academy, and KIPP Metro Schools petitioned the Atlanta Board of Education for the extension, with their current charters set to expire on June 30, 2024.

Centennial Academy, originally Centennial Place Elementary in downtown Atlanta, was established in 2014 as a K-8 STEAM and Project-based school, serving approximately 740 students. Atlanta Classical Academy, founded in 2014 in North Atlanta, has evolved into a K-12 public charter school serving around 683 students within the Atlanta Public Schools District. KIPP Metro Schools, a cluster of 11 schools around metro Atlanta, nine of which are Atlanta Public School charters, serves approximately 4,200 students.

The unanimous 9-0 votes followed a comprehensive review of both areas of growth and concern.

In the APS cluster of high schools, KIPP Atlanta Collegiate (K.A.C.) achieved a graduation rate exceeding 92% for the past two years, consistently above the district and state averages. Atlanta Classical Academy also maintains a graduation rate of over 92%, exceeding APS and state scores on the Georgia Milestone Test, with component scores surpassing APS and state standards in readiness and content mastery CCRPI. The charter was recognized as a “Literacy Leader” in 2023 by the Georgia Department of Education.

Centennial Academy earned Cognia STEAM certification during its current charter, actively working towards GaDOE STEAM certification. The school demonstrated proficiency growth in Math and ELA from 2022 to 2023.

However, Centennial’s Readiness component score at the middle school level was lower than the district average, leading to the board implementing a conditional renewal.

According to Atlanta Board of Education interim Superintendent Dr. Danielle S. Battle, “APS has never recommended a conditional renewal for a charter school, but APS administration feels that is a reasonable ask given that Centennial’s placement state targeted support and state improvement list in 2022.”

While KIPP Metro Schools sought a third charter renewal, the Board decided against an increase in student enrollment due to concerns about academic performance goals. In 2022, KIPP Vision and KIPP WAYS Academy were placed on GaDOE’s Comprehensive Support and Improvement List, and KIPP Soul Academy on GaDOE’s Targeted Support and Improvement List.

Centennial Academy and KIPP Metro Schools agreed to conditions in case of placement on any GaDOE list during the five years, triggering a performance review and possible mid-charter termination. Both schools committed to conducting a root cause analysis to identify performance issues, developing a targeted improvement plan, and sharing both analyses and plans with GaDOE and APS.

The decision to renew each school’s charter contracts impacts over 5,000 Atlanta Public Schools students.

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