Charter school slated to open

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There’s a new middle school in town.  

Officials plan to open the Tech International Charter School, or TI Charter, to at least 88 sixth graders in fall 2012.  The school, which will take over the third and part of the first floor of a 10-story building, at 3120 Corlear Ave., is to grow by one grade each year, eventually expanding to the first four floors. Officials said they will seek approval to add grades nine through 12, making TI a middle and high school, in 2013. 

The first floor of the mixed-used building on Corlear Avenue and West 231st Street was originally slated for the Kingsbridge Innovative Design Charter School, which was shut down in June due to a New York State Education Department citation for fiscal mismanagement, among other violations. 

When the space became available, at least four groups began vying for it, including a group of local parents, about half of them from PS 24; former Community Board 8 budget chairman and Riverdale Senior Services board member Alec Diacou, also known for his “Yes the Bronx” campaign; the Department of Education; and officials from Mott Hall Charter School, who were trying to find space for their middle school somewhere in the Bronx. Assemblyman Jeffrey Dinowitz and Riverdale Review publisher Andrew Wolf also surveyed the space, The Press reported in August. 

In the end, officials from TI won out, signing the day before Thanksgiving.

TI, which runs from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., has a curriculum that emphasizes technology, family involvement and international connections. Each student will receive an e-reader and a computer and will communicate with their peers from around the world via YouTube, Skype and e-mail. Families will be asked to come in over the summer for computer training so administrators can meet parents/guardians face to face, according to co-founder and executive director Steve Bergen. 

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