Monica Hernandez / Eyewitness News
NEW ORLEANS -- For days parents believed Abramson Science and Technology Charter School would shut down during an investigation into alleged misconduct, but Wednesday night at a meeting they learned that's not the case.
The meeting took place as the Department of Education announced it was expanding its investigation into alleged misconduct by the Abramson’s board. The new allegations include more sexual incidents, involving young children and one even involving rape.
“Are you serious? I am furious. How dare you?” said one Abramson parent. “To me this is neglect. This is child abuse.”
Uncertainty and miscommunication over the future of Abramson met as emotions ran high at a meeting run by the Recovery School District Wednesday night.
“My trust, that’s my heart. If I can’t trust the school board how am I going to trust anybody you place inside the school?” said one Abramson parent.
Wednesday night the Recovery School District revealed that Abramson would indeed remain open for the next school year during a growing investigation into alleged misconduct. Parents originally thought it would be closed.
“There will be a school with teachers ready to teach your children here at Abramson on the first day of school,” said John White of the Recovery School District.
But the school will be under new management during the investigation. The news came as a shock to both parents and the school’s operator.
“We had been told that late this afternoon by our lawyers that the Dept. of Education was going to issue a statement saying that Abramson had never been closed, that it would be opening up, and that we would be the managing board,” said Dr. Karen Fontenot, Abramson vice-president.
At this point the RSD isn’t sure yet who will run the school with classes ready to begin in just three weeks. The RSD is giving parents the option to enroll in another school during the investigation while keeping their spot at Abramson.
“Now where am I going to put my child? I have two of them. Where are they going to go? Every school is saying they’re fool, they’re not accepting any more kids,” said Lorelia Fournatte, an Abramson parent.
RSD officials say they’ll spend the next week searching for a new operator and managing board for Abramson during the investigation. They say they’ll make the announcement as to who that is next week.
Another meeting for parents will be held Thursday at 5:30 p.m. at Sarah T. Reed Elementary School, 5552 Read Blvd. The Reed campus is located next to the Abramson campus.