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Local & Regional

OKC District Rejects Charter School Plan

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OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Supporters of a proposed Oklahoma City charter school that would serve mostly Native American students plan to take their application to the state after a second rejection by a public school district.

The Oklahoma City Public Schools board denied an application for the Sovereign Community School earlier this year and rejected its appeal earlier this month, The Oklahoman reported. The board said the application need more details on its proposed facility and transportation plan, lacked sufficient standards for the school's leadership and had other missing budget information.

"The state law says that each of those expectations have to be met," said Rebecca Kaye, acting superintendent of the district. "We are talking about giving a nonprofit millions of dollars in public money and entrusting them with the lives of other people's children."

Bill Hickman, an attorney for the proposed charter school, requested that the board delay its decision for 30 days to allow for more discussion. But the board declined.

"We are really frustrated that we couldn't come to an agreement with the district ... but it never felt like the district wanted to find that common ground," said Phil Gover, who's leading an effort to launch the Sovereign Community School.

The proposed school aims to offer culturally sensitive curriculum across all subjects to 500 mostly indigenous students within a few years of opening.

Proposed charter schools can apply to area school districts and appeal a rejection before going to the state Board of Education. The state board could review the application as early as next month.