UMKC: No New Charter for Derrick Thomas Academy

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The University of Missouri, Kansas City is cutting ties to the Derrick Thomas Academy, saying that the charter school isn’t meeting student and organizational requirements.

According to the UMKC Charter School Center, the Derrick Thomas Academy – which was granted a charter in 2001 and opened its doors to students in the fall of 2002, has been placed on academic probation three times in the last four years.

“Since its inception, Derrick Thomas Academy has faced numerous issues. While start-up issues are not uncommon for charter public schools, after 10 years of operation DTA continues to struggle with governance, organizational, and academic performance challenges,” said Phyllis A. Chase, Ed.D., director of the UMKC Charter School Center, in a statement. “An honest assessment finds that the academy is not fulfilling the terms and conditions of its charter, is not compliant with charter school law, and is failing to consistently deliver a quality educational program to its students.”

A new administrative team for the school, which named for the late Kansas City Chiefs linebacker, will report to transition supervisor Dr. Jerry Cooper, the immediate past director of the UMKC Charter School Center.

UMKC says that they will work with parents, staff and administration to ensure that students will be able to finish the current school year without interuption.

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