Livonia considers charter school

LIVONIA, Mich. — Livonia Public Schools may grant a charter to a Japanese American school that would open to kindergarteners in September, according to The (Livonia) Observer.

 The Japanese American School of Southeast Michigan would be located in a former elementary school in the district and would be affiliated with a private Japanese American preschool already operating at that site, The Observer reported.

The Livonia school board would be responsible for overseeing the public charter school, including appointing the board of directors and monitoring its performance, according to The Observer. The district would receive 3 percent of the school's per-pupil state aid, plus reimbursement for any services it provides and rent for the space at McKinley. The district also will receive $5,000 per pupil for any JASSEM student who also lives within the Livonia school boundaries, The Observer reported.

School officials said the arrangement is expected to bring $40,000 into Livonia Public Schools in the first year and offer a high-quality opportunity to students, The Observer reported. Donna McDowell, administrator of communications, called it a "cutting edge move" for a K-12 district, since most public charter schools are authorized by universities or intermediate school districts.

The (Livonia) Observer, "Livonia district eyes charter school," June 18, 2010

Michigan Education Report, "Two languages, two cultures, one global citizen," May 21, 2010