• Lori Kirkpatrick

New Charter Campuses Proposed in DISD Boundaries

Waxahachie Faith Family Academy Charter (FFA) and Uplift Education Charter Schools have asked the Texas Education Agency (TEA) for approval to open new campuses in the Dallas ISD area in 2020.

If you are concerned about the expansion of Waxahachie FFA and Uplift Charter Schools in the DISD area, please send an email to Mike Morath, the Commissioner of Education (mike.morath@tea.texas.gov). The Commissioner’s decision is expected soon, so please act now.

Waxahachie FFA is requesting grades 9 – 12 and Uplift is requesting both preK - 5 and 9 - 12 for its Wisdom Prep location.

Critical concerns about Waxahachie FFA and Uplift Charter Schools:

Both proposed charter campuses are located in very close proximity to academically acceptable Dallas ISD schools.

FFA site at 200 W. Wheatland Road is:

- 2.1 miles (5 minutes) from DISD’s academically acceptable David W. Carter High School (C rated).

Uplift Wisdom Prep at 301 W. Camp Wisdom Road is C rated and was Improvement Required the prior year under the name Pinnacle (State ID# 57803015) is:

- 1.4 miles (< 5 minutes) from B rated DISD campus Umphrey Lee Elementary School.

- 0.4 miles (1 minute) from DISD’s Terry Elementary School (C rated).

- 2.7 miles from DISD’s David W. Carter High School.

Waxahachie FFA and Uplift schools will drain funding from Dallas ISD area schools and affect all students. The two proposed Uplift campuses would result in an estimated revenue loss of up to $100 million to Dallas ISD over 10 years, using projected estimates of full enrollment.

Waxahachie FFA does not inform parents on its website that it is evaluated under alternative education accountability (AEA) provisions. Campuses and districts registered under AEA provisions meet significantly lower accountability standards than most Dallas ISD schools and the district.

Texas faces a dire budget situation: All available state funds should be used to support existing public schools meet current challenges and ensure that Texas can keep the promises made in HB 3.

Waxahachie FFA and Uplift do not serve students who are representative of students in the Dallas ISD area.

Special education students

- Carter High School serves 12.4%

- Waxahachie FFA serves 5.7%

- Uplift Wisdom Prep serves 9.3%.

English Learners

- Dallas ISD serves 44.7%

- Uplift serves 32.1%

At-Risk Students

- Dallas ISD serves 62.9%

- Uplift serves 50.3%

The community has already spoken loud and clear, the overwhelming consensus of the community is that a charter campus is not wanted or needed. A community meeting was held on January 30, 2018 at Carter High School with DISD Trustee Joyce Foreman leading and Senator Royce West in attendance along with approximately 50 community members regarding the Waxahachie FFA's intent to expand in the area. The community said no.

We must stop the hemorrhaging of funding from our locally governed schools to these and other privately operated charter schools.

Charter expansions such as these occur through an amendment process, the approval of which is at the sole discretion of the TEA Commissioner, an appointed not elected position.

Thus, without taxpayer approval, our property taxes are being increased to support state approved, privately managed charter schools that we do not want or need. Enough is enough!

More information on FFA and Uplift charter campus expansions.

Illustrations courtesy of Texas AFT.

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