BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — There are 15 charter schools around Kern County and the Willie J Frink College Prep hopes to make that number 16.
This comes after the school’s organizers filed a petition to establish the only one of its kind in the district.
The proposed school is meant to close the opportunity gap for African American students and other students of color, populations Founder Dr. Arleana Waller shares that often get lost in the system.
“We’re supporting a population that has been failed generationally, we want to close those gaps,” said Dr. Arleana Waller.
The school will focus primarily on African American students, students of color and low-income students of any race. The school is a public charter school, publicly funded but smaller for individualized attention, awaiting approval from the Panama Buena Vista Union School District.
Providing a new option to parents, according to Waller.
“Parents need choices, parents are taking their children out of schools at a very high rate because they don’t have a choice. […]That’s not negative talk against public schools for some it does work, for some it don’t and for those it don’t we want to be there,” said Waller.
One of the parents for whom it didn’t work was Waller. She shares that her son struggled in the school system and other mothers shared the same story making the need for the school personal.
“They needed that small environment, they needed someone to wrap their arms around them a little tighter, they needed more time, they needed duplication of the lessons, that’s why I fight so hard,” said Waller.
Organizers of the school will present to the board of trustees at the end of the month and then the board will set the date to vote for the school’s approval.