Westminster Community and Enterprise charter schools receive charter renewals following lawsuit

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Posted at 11:20 AM, Jan 27, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-27 11:20:46-05

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — Westminster Community and Enterprise charter schools have received charter renewals following a lawsuit that was filed to keep them open.

Westminster Community and Enterprise charter schools were set to close June 30, 2021 after the Buffalo School Board decided to not renew their charters. The school board voted to close both schools saying they were underperforming, claim that officials from the charter schools disputed.

The schools were started by the Buffalo Public School District which is why the district has the right to renew or decline the charter, instead of the NYS Board of Regents.

In May 2021, the schools sued the district to prevent them from shutting them down.

In June 2021, New York State Supreme Court Justice Mark A. Montour granted a preliminary injunction that kept the schools open for at least the 2021-22 school year while the case proceeded.

Thursday the schools resolved the lawsuit and received charter renewals that will keep them open with closer supervision by the district through at least June 2024.

On behalf of both our boards, we want to thank the Buffalo school board for putting students and families first and agreeing to amicably settle this dispute. We all want what is best for our students, and we recognize academic improvement is critical. The BPS board went above and beyond to come up with a solution that will hold the charters accountable, while our families have continued stability during this difficult time.
- Joint statement from Enterprise Board Chair Thomas Ess and Westminster Board Chair Rita Eisenbeis

The schools now have academic achievement targets they must meet to stay open beyond June 2024. The BPS school board will have a dedicated advisor to provide support with overseeing and monitoring the schools.