As of Wednesday, April 23, 2014
As announced this past February when organizers learned the Washington State Charter School Commission denied an application submitted by Charter Schools of Sunnyside, plans to re-submit an application are still in place.
The commission last week announced it was opening the request for proposals, which must be submitted by July 15.
Letters of intent must be submitted in June.
Charter Schools of Sunnyside has been working to address the issues that prevented approval this past February.
The major sticking point, noted the commission, was the organization’s budget and finances.
“There are a few changes we’ve made to the application,” said Erin Martin, co-chair for Charter Schools of Sunnyside.
Brittany Weaver also chairs the organization. She said the non-profit group has been applying for grants and reached out to other professionals to help improve the budget.
“We’ve also begun a fundraising plan,” said Martin.
The organization has been re-evaluating the amount of money it initially believed was needed for operational costs. In the first round of the application process, the organization stated $1.6 million was needed.
“The new figure hasn’t been decided…it will be less,” said Weaver.
Martin said most of the money Charter Schools of Sunnyside needs to start a school in the fall of 2015 is start-up funding.
“It’s not an obstacle we can’t overcome,” she said.
Weaver said the application process begins in June with public forums to be held this coming September. The commission, she said will make its decision on Oct. 9.
In February the commission noted Charter Schools of Sunnyside needed someone with strong fundraising experience.
Martin said the group has been in contact with different grant writers and fundraising groups to strengthen its financial standing.
“We took the suggestions of the evaluators and the commission, and have worked very hard to address the issues brought to our attention,” said Weaver.