- Associated Press - Thursday, November 6, 2014

YPSILANTI, Mich. (AP) - In a story Nov. 5 about Eastern Michigan University closing a charter school, The Associated Press erroneously referred to Malverne Winborne, the director of the university’s charter schools office, as a female. Winborne is male.

A corrected version of the story is below:

EMU to close charter school at end of school year

Eastern Michigan University to close Gaudior Academy at end of school year

YPSILANTI, Mich. (AP) - Eastern Michigan University has announced plans to close one of its charter schools at the end of the year.

Malverne Winborne, director of the EMU Charter Schools Office, said Wednesday that the university decided not to renew a contract with Gaudior Academy due to unsuccessful performance. He believes the resources of the Inkster school were taxed beyond its capacity to effectively address the evolving educational needs of the students, she said.

EMU cited poor academic performance, declining student enrollment and turnover in school leadership and governance among its reasons not to renew the charter.

“While these factors individually would not necessarily lead to a non-renewal decision, when taken together they cannot be ignored,” Winborne said.

Gaudior, the university’s first charter school, currently has a zero percent ranking from the state, placing it at the bottom of Michigan’s school ranking system.

EMU plans to work with the board of directors at the charter school to help students and staff transition.

“Our goal is to make sure that the Gaudior Academy families are afforded ample time to identify appropriate schools in which to enroll their children in fall 2015,” Winborne said. “This process also allows staff members appropriate time to seek alternative employment opportunities.”

Gaudior Academy’s Board of Directors could try to establish a relationship with another charter school authorizer, Winborne said.

EMU is one of 11 charter school authorizers facing possible suspension by the Michigan Department of Education due to low academic performance and problems with contract transparency. If state school Superintendent Mike Flanagan suspends EMU, it won’t be able to open any new charter schools.

EMU charters 12 schools in southeastern Michigan.

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