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New Charter School Coming To Utica In 2012

New Charter School Opening in Utica
John MacDougal, AFP, Getty Images

Utica, NY (WIBX) – The Mohawk Valley Charter School for Excellence is looking fo a few good applicants to serve as members of the Board of Trustees.The new Charter school opening its doors in the fall of 2012 is looking to fill key positions to bring a different kind of educational experience to area kids according to MVCSE Chair, Dr. Andy Lopez-Williams. He said his aim is in step with the New York State Education Department that advices to look for board members who possess the will, skill and capacity to start and run a school. He said he’s looking to hire between 5 or 15 individuals he describes as, “People who bring specialized skill sets or knowledge sets to the board. For instance, administrators, finance persons and educators.” He said these individuals would need to have the ability to commit to being on the Board of Trustees for a few years and be prepared to oversee and run the school.

Lopez-Williams said right now the Charter school is in the planning stages with the goal of being  authorized in 2011, and once that authorization comes its Board of Trustees will be official. He said, “It’s going to be a public school. It will be functioning in every respect in terms of logistics like a  public school. The difference will be the philosophy and the mind set. We’re taking a specific approach to learning that says that helping children thrive in building strong children is the way to help children learn and grow, and that’s our philosophy and that’s what makes us different from a typical public school, which is more of a reactive approach. They only intervene when there are problems–we intervene so that there won’t be problems–we help children thrive so that they don’t fail.”

Dr. Lopez-Williams is a native Utican who relocated back to the area from Providence, RI. He currently works as a Clinical Psychologist at the ADHD and Autism Psychological Services and Advocacy Agency, which he owns and operates. He is also the Chair and CEO of Central New York Quest, a non-profit agency that works with individuals with intellectual, mental health and developmental disorders. He said his group is still looking for a location in Utica that can support the Charter school that will have up to 100 students. Dr. Lopez-Williams will be a guest on First Look tomorrow to talk more about his goals for the new school.

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