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Thurgood Marshall Leadership Academy shut down by charter school board

The school sent letters home to parents Tuesday explaining the closure.

Posted: Dec 18, 2018 8:34 PM
Updated: Dec 18, 2018 10:56 PM

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WFFT) - The Indiana Charter School Board is shutting down Thurgood Marshall Leadership Academy after the current school year.

"It was clear that this cannot continue. The school should probably close immediately," said Indiana Charter School Board member Mark GiaQuinta.

The school sent letters home to parents Tuesday explaining the closure.

The Fort Wayne Urban League created Thurgood Marshall in 2012 with students in Kindergarten through Eighth Grade.

This year, the school moved to Come As You Are Community Church.

Thurgood Marshall Academy failed to meet Indiana Department of Education expectations, despite the motto "High expectations. No excuses."

The school scored an "F" on the Indiana accountability system three times in the last five years.

"It is simply not performing anywhere near the level of the surrounding Fort Wayne Community Schools," said GiaQuinta, who also served on the FWCS board.

GiaQuinta added Thurgood Marshall parents still have a choice.

"Even if the school remains open, it doesn't mean the children have to stay there. They shouldn't stay there. The parent's shouldn't keep them there," he said.

Thurgood Marshall principal Shadwaynn Curry declined an interview, but said in a statement the school continues to educate students and help with the transition.
GiaQuinta hopes this closure sends a message across Indiana.

"The charter school experiment has been a dismal failure. All of them should close," he said.

The last day for students at Thurgood Marshall Leadership Academy will be June 5. Summer school will be offered to students who need it until the end of June.

Full statement from Thurgood Marshall principal Shadwaynn Curry:

"It is unfortunate for the students, staff, and community to see Thurgood Marshall Leadership Academy dissolve at the end of 2018-2019 school year. It is the intent of the staff, administration, and the Fort Wayne Urban League Center for Education to continue to provide a quality education for our precious students as well as assist with this tough transition. Parents have been notified last week and we will continue to notify parents and keep the lines of communication open as we move forward."

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