Metro & State
School board considers blocking charter from expanding into second East Austin campus.
The Austin school district board room was standing-room only as trustees discussed the district’s partnership with the IDEA Allan charter school operator.
The Austin school district board room was standing room only Monday night, with supporters and opponents of IDEA Allan charter school eager to hear the board’s decision on the future of the district’s partnership with the charter operator. Police estimated another 200 people gathered outside, unable to get into the board room.
Trustees had not determined the fate of IDEA Allan by press time late Monday. The school board was considering blocking IDEA from expanding into a second East Austin school. To do so, trustees would have to amend its contract with IDEA Public Schools.
Students, parents and com- munity members on both sides of the issue camped out overnight Sunday to nab one of 30 slots to speak to the board prior to the vote.
“I feel the children of the east side deserve better choices than what they’re given,” said Christina Melendez, parent of an IDEA Allan student and who lives in East Austin. “I really want to make sure this decision isn’t based on politics, but it’s based on the education of our children.”
The majority spoke against IDEA, calling for an end to the partnership, including several students who slept outside district headquarters Sunday for the chance to speak and stayed at Monday’s meeting late, despite having finals Tuesday.
“It’s most unfortunate the previous board left a mess to clean up, shattered public trust and left our public schools open to IDEA’s