Contact: Audrey Williams 202-328-2748
Charter Board Proposes Closure of
Imagine Southeast Public Charter School
School will have a chance to publically
respond to PCSB findings
Washington, D.C. — The DC Public Charter School Board (PCSB)
voted January 10 in favor of a proposal
to consider revoking the charter of Imagine Southeast Public Charter School. The Board reviewed a staff report finding
that the school failed to meet four of its five goals for academic achievement
set forth in its charter -- those regarding reading, mathematics, attendance,
and parent satisfaction. Five Board
members voted in favor of the proposal with Board member Don Soifer abstaining.
Chair Brian W. Jones explained that the Board of Trustees of Imagine Southeast will
receive a letter detailing the reasons for the proposal and will have the
option of a public hearing, if requested within 15 days of receipt of the
letter. If the school elects to have a hearing,
the leaders and the public will have an opportunity to respond to the Board’s
findings. “This process gives the school the opportunity to make its case
before the Board and allows us the opportunity to deliberate before we make a
final decision,” Jones said. The Board
would then make a final decision on the proposed closure within 30 days of the
Imagine Southeast PCS is located
at 3100 Martin Luther King, Jr. Avenue
SE in Ward 8 and has been operating since August 2008. The school is a member of Imagine Schools, a
full-service charter school management organization that operates 70 schools in
12 states and the District of Columbia.
The school serves 605 students in grades PK3-7th grade.
made the case for the proposed closure in a presentation at the special Board meeting
that included the following:
- The DC School Reform Act (§38-1802-13) calls for PCSB to conduct a thorough review at
least every five years of whether charter schools are meeting the goals and
academic achievement expectations they committed to in their charter.
- PCSB conducted the five-year review and determined that
Imagine Southeast PCS failed to meet four of its five goals and academic
achievement expectations: those regarding reading, mathematics, attendance, and
- Its students’ DC-CAS scores have remained consistently below
the statewide average, and these scores have not improved significantly since
the school’s first year in operation. Only 37%
of the students are able to read on grade level. In their first year of operation, 36% of the
students were able to read on grade level.
Four years later that result has increased by 1%. The school has not shown significant
improvement in reading and math in 5 years.
In math, only 33% of the students are performing at grade level.
- In 2011-12, its average attendance was the lowest of all the
Ward 8 elementary and middle schools.
- Its reenrollment rate has remained below 70%, indicating
that many parents are not satisfied with the school.
- Imagine Southeast PCS has been out of compliance with
several applicable laws since it began operating.
Public Charter School Board (PCSB) is setting a national model for creating
quality public school options through its rigorous review of new charter
applications and effective oversight of charter school performance that is
leading the transformation of public education in Washington, DC. PCSB
currently oversees 57 public charter schools on 102 campuses serving 35,019
students living in every ward of the city. Learn more at