June 2, 2015

Dual Language Charter School Approved To Open

Mariama Carson - LinkedIn

Mariama Carson


A school that will teach students how to speak Spanish and English was given approval by the Indianapolis Charter School Board Tuesday to open next year on the city’s Northwest side in Lafayette Square 

The concept behind Global Preparatory Academy was created by Mariama Carson, a former Pike Township principal who had seen Latino students in her school struggle to learn and make connections with staff who often did not speak their language.

A year ago Carson was chosen for The Mind Trust’s two-year Education Entrepreneur Fellowship to design the school.

The charter school board voted unanimously to approve the charter. 

More: Charter Innovations Show Promising Results For Teaching Language

Interview: Mariama Carson On Her Proposed Dual Language Charter School 

Global Prep is slated to open in August 2016 with 90 students in Kindergarten and 50 first-graders. Within eight years, the school would expand to eighth grade and have 700 students enrolled.

The plan is for the grade levels to be evenly split between low-income native-English and native-Spanish speakers. Though the school will be required to accept all students who apply. 

Also during Tuesday's meeting:

  • Herron High School was unanimously approved to replicate a 9-12th grade campus within the Indianapolis Public School district for the 2016-17 school year. The A-rated school is considered one of the top in the state with 750 students. As of last month, more than 300 students were on a waiting list to enroll for next school year. The new school would enroll around 575 students and have the same college preparatory curriculum as the original campus in Herron-Morton Place neighborhood along 16th Street. School leaders are eyeing the Heslar Naval Armory, 1626 W 30th St., as a possible location. WFYI previously reported on the school's plans to replicate.
  • Avondale Meadows was given the go-ahead to open a 6th-8th grade middle school in July 2016. School leaders hope to enroll 300 students by 2022. 

The Mind Program, a group planning to open an 8th-12th grade high school on the Fareastside had presented its application to the board in April. The board was slated to vote on the application Tuesday but the group withdrew its application. 

Contact WFYI education reporter Eric Weddle at eweddle@wfyi.org or call (317) 614-0470. Follow on Twitter: @ericweddle.

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