Two Charter Schools To Share Space

Two Natomas charter schools have teamed up to rent space to house classrooms.

Both Natomas Charter and WestlakeCharter school boards yesterday approved a joint, two-year sublease with Buzz Oates Real Estate. Together, the two schools will rent space located at 4400 East Commerce Way.

The all-indoor facility includes 15 classrooms, two science labs, a gymnasium and cafeteria. Plans are to build an outdoor play area on the black top adjacent to the building. The site once served as the campus for the Natomas Pacific Pathways Preparatory charter school program which later moved to the former Natomas Middle School campus on Del Paso Road.

Natomas Charter School’s Transitions program needs more space with its expansion from kindergarten only up to 1st grade next year. Westlake Charter has also added to its elementary grades and is growing a middle school program starting with the addition of 6th grade in the fall. The new space is expected to house all Transitions students along with Westlake Charter’s 4th, 5th and 6th graders.

Both charter school programs had requested subsidized classroom space from the Natomas Unified School District. The district offered Natomas Charter space at Jefferson Elementary School and Westlake Charter classrooms on the Natomas High School campus. Natomas Charter executive director Charlie Leo and Westlake Charter School principal Bob Capp were urged by parents to research other options for classrooms.

A plan for Natomas Charter to rent its own space outside of the school district’s boundaries stalled last month. Initial talks with Buzz Oates Real Estate for the East Commerce Way site fell through, but resumed after another potential renter dropped out of the picture.

The new agreement calls for Westlake to pay $12,500 rent per month for months one and two, $25,000 per month for months three through 12 and $26,000 per month for the second year. Information on Natomas Charter’s portion of the classroom rent was not available at press time.



  1. Anonymous says

    Sounds like elitism to me. Why not use current open Natomas facilities that are available at no extra cost in south Natomas? The charters are so flush with cash that they can afford $25,000 a month in rent? Doesn’t seem logical or ethical. And yet, in this district, we appear to allow such behavior. How do they sleep at night knowing the regular (non-exclusive) public schools are getting the short end of the stick?

  2. Anonymous says

    You are misinformed. The district did not offer any “current open facilities” but instead said they would move portables from other locations to stick in fields and parking lots. It is not elitism to say that 4th graders should not and do not have a place on a high school campus. That’s good parenting, and in turn, good school administration.

  3. Anonymous says

    Sending your kids to a charter school is a choice, not a right.

    Charter schools do have the right to classroom space offered by a host school district, they do not have a right to choose where those facilities are located.

    Why is it so difficult for Westlake parents to understand that just because the school is located in the Natomas district, it is completely indepedent and not a district school?

    Oh, and Westlake ALREADY shares a campus with a high school. How would sharing a campus with Natomas High School be any different – other than the fact it’s located in South Natomas? We all know how much Westlake parents wanted the entire Natomas Middle School campus, but now have to share with NP3. Then they set their sights on Leroy Greene.

    Not sure how housing students on an active construction site with possible exposure to asbestos would be considered good parenting. Or administration.

    Do tell.

  4. Anonymous says

    Nobody said anything about Leroy Greene here in these posts. The first person stated that the charters refused an offer of currently open facilities. That offer wasn’t made.

    Having elementary students share with NP3 is not working out either. That was the facility the district gave the school. That doesn’t make it a quality location nor is it elitism to say “This isn’t working, we will look for another option.”

    Why is it when people want something better for their children, that is elitism? But when a system is content with mediocrity that is good public education?

  5. Anonymous says

    The short end of the stick? Do district kids have mice in their 1950’s built buildings? Do district kids have leftover portables thrown onto old pavement with no proper playground facilities? Westlake is the worst campus in the district. Yet now you believe 4th graders should move across town onto a high school campus at the back of another parking lot to learn. You have some definition of “elitism”.

    Just because charter schools in the area are smarter with their money, even though they receive LESS than their district counterparts, is rich. No pun intended.

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