Timothy Hill Children’s Ranch to try for charter school again?

05/16/2012 11:12 AM |

PAUL SQUIRE PHOTO | Timothy Hill Children's Ranch executive director Thaddaeus “Thud” Hill spoke at Tuesday night's Riverhead school board hearing in March.

The proposed Timothy Hill Community Charter School was not selected for further evaluation in the State Education Department’s first round of charter school applications. But the school’s application will be resubmitted by June 25, in time for the department’s second round, said Thaddaeus “Thud” Hill, executive director of the nonprofit Timothy Hill Children’s Ranch on Middle Road in Riverhead.

The state is expected to announce which schools it will review from the second application round sometime in late summer or early fall, which will still give the Timothy Hill proposal a chance to meet its original goal of opening for the 2013-14 school year, Mr. Hill said.

In the meantime, Timothy Hill has withdrawn its original application in order to make some changes that were recommended by department of education staff, Mr. Hill said.

Timothy Hill is planning an all-boys grade 7-12 school in a Riverhead area location that’s yet to be determined, Mr. Hill said.

Initially, he said, they would probably seek to rent space, rather than build. Enrollment is expected to start at 55 students and increase to 210 by the school’s fifth year.

Timothy Hill Children’s Ranch was started 30 years ago on a 70-acre ranch. It is licensed by the state and houses boys who are troubled, abused or neglected or come from troubled families. The ranch was the brainchild of Timothy Hill, Thud’s brother, who died in a bicycle accident in 1972 at the age of 13, before he could see his dream fulfilled.

Charter schools are considered public schools, but receive their funding from the home district of each student they enroll, based on the per-pupil costs of the home district, as determined by the SED.

tgannon@timesreview.com

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