Indiana charter law blocking 2nd area building proposal

Devon Haynie | The Journal Gazette

If Sunrise Chapel Pastor Lael Barkman had his way, Harlan Elementary School would spring to life again.

Its doors, shuttered a year ago, would be open to the small-town community. The school could be used by national Christian groups, Barkman’s own church and organizers of the local fair.

But for that to happen, Barkman’s church would need to be able to buy the vacant building. And under current state law, that can’t happen for at least three more years.

Barkman and his Harlan supporters are the second group of community members to come up against a 2011 law that gives charter schools the first option to buy vacant school buildings. The Fort Wayne-South Bend Catholic Diocese tried to purchase Monroeville Elementary this past spring in hopes of converting it to a Catholic school but came across the same obstacle.

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POSTED: 06/28/12 at 7:11 am. FILED UNDER: News, Schools