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December 28, 2011

Florida Charter Schools Disappointing

A student was denied access to the Pivot Charter School because of his physical/speech challenge.  School representatives couldn’t find anyone to assist him in the bathroom.  The student wasn’t mentally challenged and uses a communication device to speak.

“It’s not negative or rude, but every angle was trying to find a different way to say 'no' every single time we were in that office," said the student’s father.  "They were politely trying to say they didn't want him there. Because that's the easy way."

The school’s principal declined to discuss this specific case.  She states she has never denied a student because of physical/mental challenge.  To the best of her knowledge, this has “never happened.”

86% of charter schools in Florida don’t educate a student with a serious physical/mental challenge.  State laws in Florida document that every student should have the same chance at entering charter schools.  People with physical/mental challenges have also been denied charter school access in California, Louisiana, New York, and Texas as found by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

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