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    Charter school Select Committee sets rules for public input, talks purpose

    The School Board committee in charge of reviewing the application for the Loudoun Math and IT Academy charter school held its first meeting Wednesday night.

    There, committee members Jeff Morse (Dulles), Brenda Sheridan (Sterling) and Jill Turgeon (Blue Ridge), set rules for public comment and questions and discussed the committee’s purpose.

    “There’s some question as to whether the charter of this subcommittee is to provide a recommendation,” Morse said. “It’s not in the actual School Board instruction but we believe that’s something the chairman will give us direction to do.”

    Morse requested that questions for the applicants be first directed to the Board and that questions be based on fact, not rumor.

    The goal of the process is to give the applicant at least five days to respond to questions.

    Morse also asked the applicants to go through a similar process when asking questions about the process, so that the responses could be posted online.

    “I will not be releasing information advance to any one party or parties,” Morse said.

    The committee decided to include a public hearing in its work session scheduled for Nov. 19.

    Deputy Superintendent Ned Waterhouse also told committee members he anticipated receiving more documents from applicants as the process continued.

    Waterhouse received a modified application that combined the original applications with applicant responses to the Virginia Board of Education’s review process Wednesday afternoon.

    “It is not a substantive change. Our [preliminary staff] report has not been responded to,” Waterhouse said. “And we’re waiting for that.”

    There will be four more Select Committee meetings:

    • Nov. 19, 5:15 p.m. – work session and public hearing
    • Nov. 29, 5 p.m. – public hearing
    • Dec. 6, 5 p.m. - public hearing
    • Dec. 13, 5 p.m. - final review and recommendation

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