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Plans For Pinecrest Charter School Revamped

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Pinecrest, CA — The Twain Harte School District Board of Trustees will hold a special meeting later this month to hear about a revised proposal to start a charter school in Pinecrest.

The Pinecrest Expedition Academy would utilize the former Pinecrest Elementary School site that closed in 2012 and the petition includes both a traditional site-based program and the option for independent study.

The idea of a charter school in Pinecrest was first petitioned to the Tuolumne County Board of Education in 2018, but proponents say it ran into issues related to being eligible for the Public Charter School Grant Program.

Lead petitioner, Heidi Lupo, says, “Our efforts in 2018 shed great light on the vast need for an elementary education program in the Pinecrest area, unfortunately we made a mistake which led to the petition not being approved. Our new petition is stronger and financially viable. The inclusion of an independent study option provides us with the ability to financially sustain the program without grant funds.”

Public school students in the Pinecrest area currently travel down to Twain Harte, and proponents of the charter say the distance makes it difficult for families to take an active role in their children’s education.

A public hearing about the proposal is scheduled for October 23 at 4pm in the Twain Harte School Board Room located at the upper campus at 22974 Twain Harte Drive. The purpose is to consider the level of support for the petition by teachers employed by the district, other district employees, and parents.