Marion included in list of sites for proposed charter schools

Connections Charter School would serve K-6 students

By Ralph Hardin ralphhardin@gmail.com

A dozen new charter schools across the state are in the application process, filing intent to apply paperwork with the Arkansas Department of Education last week. Eleven organizations notified the Department of Education that they plan to move forward with plans on opening charter schools in cities in all areas of the state, including one here in Crittenden County. Connections Charter School, sponsored by an organization of the same name and led by Aretha Coleman of West Memphis, would, if opened, serve up to 350 students. The school would accommodate kindergarten through sixth grade students from the Marion School District. According to the filing, the Connections Charter School’s focus would be on teaching critical thinking skills and problem solving. The school would also focus on literacy and math, and on discovery and research in science and social studies. The other proposed charter schools would be located in Pine Bluff, Fayetteville, Redfield and Paron. There have been a number of attempts to open a charter school in Crittenden County, most recently in 2013, when a group looked to open the Young Adult Magic Johnson Bridgescape Academy at the old JS Phelix School in Sunset.

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