Frequently Asked Questions

When will the school open and what grade levels will be taught?What is a Public Charter School?Why Public Charter?Why Now?Is this a private school?How is it funded?What is a full immersion language school?Are public charter schools held to the same accountability and testing requirements?

Start Date and Grade Levels

During the State Board of Education (SBE) meeting where they approved our public charter sponsorship, it was suggested by a board member that Le Monde take a planning year and open in the fall of 2018. The initial application to Norman Public Schools and appeals process, in which we granted them an extension, took much of the year that we were hoping to be able to finalize many of the steps needed to open next fall – including hiring a head of school, recruiting teachers and finalizing the facility. Our efforts right now are focused on negotiating our sponsorship contract with the SBE and launching what will be a highly successful school dedicated to student excellence. We look forward to sharing details with the greater Norman community as they become available and during each step in this exciting process.

The vision for the school includes pre-kindergarten through 8th grade in French and Spanish, beginning with lower grades (PK-6th or 7th in French, and PK-1st in Spanish) adding grades and possibly add more languages as the school evolves.

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What is a Public Charter School?

Charter schools are public schools and are free to attend. They are responsive to student needs and held accountable for student achievement and financial responsibility.

Charter schools can be sponsored by local school districts, CareerTechs, universities, federally-recognized Indian tribes, and the Oklahoma State Department of Education. Le Monde International School has applied for a charter sponsor to Norman Public Schools.

The basic concept of a charter school is to exercise increased autonomy in return for accountability. Charter schools are responsible to several groups for both academic results and fiscal practices: the sponsor that grants them, the parents who choose them and the public that funds them.

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Why Public Charter?

Charter schools operate with freedom from many of the regulations that apply to traditional public schools. In exchange for that flexibility, charters are held accountable not only to the state, but also their charter sponsor and governance board.  

Le Monde International School was created to continue the vision first created by Norman Public Schools to provide foreign language education early in a student’s public education through language immersion – a proven teaching method that not only produces bilingual students, but improves overall academic achievement.

Charter schools are given freedom to innovate, choose their own curriculum and create their own discipline systems. Some specialty charter schools focus on areas such as math, fine arts, science or health (see magnet schools). Le Monde will focus on language and culture as a means of creating globally competitive students.

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Why Now?

The recent Oklahoma state budget deficit resulted in large cuts from Norman Public Schools, leading to the discontinuation of Reagan Elementary's Partial French Immersion Program.

Le Monde International School can operate under a more flexible model to make immersion education financially possible, concentrating on recruiting international teachers not bound to the same state certification requirements, but proven to be highly effective in both language education and overall academic success.

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Is this a private school?

No. Le Monde International School will be a public charter school, free to attend and open to any student in the Norman Public School District.  Public charter schools are open to all students to enroll.  When applications exceed the school’s capacity, a random lottery is held.  

Charter schools cannot “limit admission based on ethnicity, national origin, gender, income level, disabling condition, English proficiency, measures of achievement, aptitude, or athletic ability.”

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How is it funded?

Le Monde International School would be provided state funding according to school attendance. Oklahoma state funding would follow the students to the new school, as would the cost of educating the student population. However, local sales tax monies would remain with Norman Public Schools.

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What is a full immersion language school?

Language immersion is a method of teaching a second language in which the learners' second language is the medium of classroom instruction. Students will spend the majority of the day learning in the second language, French and Spanish, with instruction for English literature and grammar in English.

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Are public charter schools held to the same accountability and testing requirements?

Yes.  They must take all the same required tests as traditional public schools, and they are held accountable not only to the state but also to their charter sponsor.

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