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LCS letter raises concerns about Tallahassee Classical School charter contract

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Posted at 3:18 PM, Apr 04, 2023

A letter from Leon County Schools' superintendent Rocky Hanna to Tallahassee Classical School is now raising questions regarding whether or not the classical school has violated its charter contract with LCS.

In the letter sent by Hanna to TCS' board chair Barney Bishop March 31, Hanna expressed compliance and governing board concerns have led them to conclude that TCS is out of compliance with the contract and Florida law.

According to Hanna, the charter school contract between LCS and TCS states a minimum of five board members should be placed on the Governing Board for the general direction and management of the affairs of the classical school.

Hanna wrote in the letter the district has not received notice that a fifth board member was officially and legally appointed pursuant to formal approval by TCS' Governing Board.

TCS staff members confirmed that there were only four board members. According to Hanna's letter, on January 19 former principal Hope Carrasquilla was contacted and informed that TCS only listed four board members on the website.

According to Hanna, the contract states where there is not a minimum of five official board members for more than 60 days, the Sponsor may choose to terminate or not to renew the Charter for failure to maintain the minimum number of governing board members for more than 60 days.

"As the executive leading the sponsoring agency, it is my responsibility to ensure that charter schools in Leon County are in compliance with the charter school contract and Florida law," Hanna wrote in the letter.

Hanna advised TCS to provide the following information within the next five business days:

  • Evidence of Notifying the Sponsor in writing within 5 business days of change to the governing board.
  • Governing board minutes from when a new board member was approved/appointed by the board.
  • Proof that adequate background checks and fingerprinting has been completed prior to board approval any new members, pursuant to Florida Statute 1002.33 (12)(g)(1).
  • Evidence that the governing board has maintained the minimum number of governing board members for more than 60 days.

The compliance and governing board concerns comes nearly two weeks after TCS received national attention due to TCS parents making complaints that it was inappropriate for their 6th graders to see Michelangelo's statue of David during art class. The complaints forced the principal to resign.