Performance charter school in Carson City delays opening for a year |

Performance charter school in Carson City delays opening for a year

Teri Vance

With enrollment numbers lagging, the founders of a new state-sponsored charter school in Carson City that’s set to focus on the performing arts have decided to delay opening until next year.

“Frankly, the numbers just weren’t adding up,” Eugene Paslov, the school’s governing board president, said in a statement. “We just felt that the number we targeted to make it all come together wasn’t going to happen this year.”

The Nevada Performance Academy, a public charter school with plans to combine face-to-face instruction with online learning and an arts-infused curriculum, will go before the Nevada Public Charter School Authority today to request permission to postpone its opening until fall 2014.

School Executive Director David Papke said the charter authority recommended that the school have 110-120 students to ensure adequate funding, which is based on the number of pupils enrolled.

Papke said school officials had set a goal of 85.

“We were not convinced we were going to be able to do that for sure,” he said.

However, he said that during meetings with parents, most committed to enrolling their children next year. Some joined in the effort to recruit more students before then.

“We’ve identified a core group to help us with outreach,” Papke said. “We feel like we have a core contingency.”

Without having to spend so much time with publicity, Papke said, school officials can spend more time focusing on the curriculum.

“If there’s a blessing in this, it’s that we can present a more fully realized program next year,” Papke said.

Paslov said he is confident the school will overcome the obstacles next year.

“Our families are deeply disappointed, but they are telling us they will be back. And our partners, Western Nevada College, the Brewery Arts Center and the Carson City Library, have already expressed their commitment to stay the course,” he said. “Our thanks and our hearts go out to all the families who have signed up so far and who helped us design the program. This was no easy decision, but it was essential to our vision that we have adequate funding in order to guarantee proper implementation.”

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