Cobb County Board of Education votes to not renew charter school

- Parents of a Cobb County charter school are scrambling to find a new school for their children. The Cobb County School Board voted Thursday night to not renew the charter for the International Academy of Smyrna.

The school's charter expires June 30. Cobb County Superintendent Chris Ragsdale recommended not renewing it based on poor academic performance.

With the future of IAS on the line, parents and students packed the Cobb School Board meeting. They wore red in a show of force and begged the board to keep their school open.

“We chose IAS because it's more than a school, it's a family,” said parent Bianca Isom.

Despite their pleas, the board voted 6 to 1 to not renew the charter. “Our currency in Georgia with our school is test scores,” said Board Chairman David Chastain.

After the vote, parents stood outside the school board headquarters. Many were in tears and left wondering what to tell their children.

“I don't know what I'm going to do, my son is in kindergarten there, and loves his school, how am I going to tell him his school is closed?” said Jessie Cull.

Principal Kari Schrock was hoping the board would give them a second chance.

“For us to be in this position in April with enrollment and admissions for next year already completed, employee contracts already issued, this could not have come at a worse time,” said Principal Schrock.

About 1000 students attend the Kindergarten through 8th grade school. The superintendent recommended opening school choice only to IAS students.

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