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State Bonds Boost Schools’ Expansion Plans

November 16, 2011 : Cape Cod Times, by Susan Milton

Two public Cape charter schools – Sturgis Charter Public School in Hyannis and Cape Cod Lighthouse Charter School soon to be in East Harwich – are getting public financing to build new schools.

The bonds were issued by MassDevelopment, the state’s finance and development agency which works with businesses, nonprofits, financial institutions, and communities to stimulate economic growth across the commonwealth.

Sturgis is getting $9.75 million to build a 46,000-square-foot, two-story high school at a six-acre site on West Main Street.

The Lighthouse school is using $3.96 million in bond proceeds to buy the former Regal Harwich Cinemas in East Harwich. The renovation will divide the theaters on the first floor into roughly 18 classrooms, a main office, a large multipurpose common space and bathrooms.

Both financing packages include qualified school construction bonds, created by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 with a 100 percent federal subsidy.

The Massachusetts School Building Authority allocated bond authority to MassDevelopment to issue these bonds for school construction, renovation, and rehabilitation projects.

Both schools draw students from all over Cape Cod and expect their new buildings to open at the start of the next school year.

A public middle school, Cape Cod Lighthouse Charter School serves 228 students in grades 6-8.

Founded in 1994, the school was one of the first 14 charter schools approved in Massachusetts.

Sturgis is a college preparatory school for grades 9-12 with more than 400 students at its current site on Main Street in Hyannis and another 200 students at a temporary site, also on Main Street. The school has state permission to grow to 800 students.

© Copyright 2011 Cape Cod Times.