A Tucson charter school will likely close at the end of this year after an administrative law judge determined it should have its charter revoked.
Allsport Academy, which serves grades 5-9, failed to make sufficient academic progress after underperforming for the last three years, prompting Judge Thomas Shedden to issue the order against the school late last month.
The Arizona State Board for Charter Schools will make the final decision on the school’s fate at its Nov. 21 meeting, said DeAnna Rowe, executive director of the board.
However, school officials are looking at surrendering the charter and closing the school rather than have it revoked, said Moses Montoya, board chairman and administrator for Allsport Academy.
Montoya referred further questions to Raquel Montoya, the school’s manager and board secretary treasurer.
Raquel Montoya did not respond to a request for comment.
If the state board revokes the charter, the school would have to shut down by December.
In May, the state board for charter schools determined Allsport’s charter should be revoked after the school did not meet any of the board’s criteria for improvement.
Allsport officials then requested a hearing with the judge at the state Office of Administrative Hearings.
The board’s decision was triggered by an F grade the school received from the Arizona Department of Education for the 2011-12 school year, which was preceded by a D in 2010-11 and an underperforming label in 2009-10.
Allsport also received an F in the 2012-13 edition of the state’s letter grades.
If a charter school receives an F, the board has to decide whether to help restore the school to acceptable performance or revoke its charter.
Allsport officials submitted a portfolio of evidence showing its progress in April, which was followed by a visit to the school from board officials later that month. After the visit, board officials decided the school didn’t show enough improvement.
According to board documents, the board made its decision because the school failed to implement an improvement plan to raise its academic standing, provide evidence of a curriculum aligned with state standards and provide a comprehensive professional development plan for teachers, among other issues.
More specifically, school officials didn’t provide evidence that they were using curriculum maps, lesson plans, teacher evaluations and student assessment tests that met the board’s requirements.
The school also failed to meet the board’s financial-performance expectations, which indicates it lacked the capacity to improve student academics.
Allsport suffered from low test scores on AIMS, the state’s assessment test, although Moses Montoya said earlier this year the students already struggled with state standards before they arrived at the school.
The school, which had 52 students as of August, caters to young athletes, offering a mixture of athletic programs and academics that will prepare them for high school, according to school officials.