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Houston school board votes to close exemplary charter school for children from Latino immigrant families

Houston school board votes to close exemplary charter school for children from Latino immigrant families

By Ray Ruiz
The Venture

HOUSTON — At a meeting in April, the Houston Independent School District (HISD) Board decided to merge the exemplary-rated Kaleidoscope Charter School with Jane Long Middle School by a vote of 6-3. Kaleidoscope has just over 100 students, many of which come from Latino immigrant families.

The decision was called “horrible” by activists who gathered over 640 signatures in a petition to save the school. At the meeting, 35 supporters in red shirts stood together to urge the school board to not merge Kaleidoscope with what they feel is a struggling middle school.

“Out of all the schools that are currently exemplary, why would you shut one down?” asked community organizer Fidencio Leija Chavez, Jr. “Instead of embracing it — keeping it intact — they’re wanting to take it apart and dismantle it.”

A coalition of local Latino groups, which included Mi Familia Vota, Familias Inmigrantes y Estudiantes en la Lucha (FIEL), and National Hispanic Professional Organization (NHPO) Leadership Institute sought to keep the school open.

The school board took about ninety minutes to reach their decision…

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