Charter school works way through growing pains

Thursday, September 7th 2000, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

One of Tulsa’s first charter schools is working out a few problems that come with starting up a new school.

Dove science academy is one of three Tulsa charter schools working on their first year of teaching. The school specializes in math and science-based curriculum for sixth through eighth graders. School leaders say there were challenges at first in adjusting more than 200 students to their new surroundings.

"When you start a new school, you have to be ready for everything,” said Dove Academy Director Birol Furat. “I mean, delaying furniture, discipline problems, family involvement and a lot of documentation."

Furat says things are running much more smoothly now. She says the students come from a variety of school backgrounds and many have strong aptitude and interest in math and science. Many say they like the smaller school atmosphere, and say classes are more challenging.

"Usually you just sit there in a textbook and read and write and do the paper, while they kind of make it more fun," said student Lindsey Williams.

"They have a good discipline plan here like if you get a detention and stuff, so you can learn not to be bad and stuff," said student Bryce Pacheco.

Although the middle school students spend more class time in math and science, they also study fine arts, social studies, Spanish and physical education. “We balance everything in the education of the child, because if you teach only math and science and technology, we produce robots," said Farut.

Parent Lisa Lewis says she likes Dove's smaller class size and after school tutoring. She says her daughter loves it here as well, and is having an easier time socially.

"The uniform, I think, is a good idea,” Lewis said of Dove’s strict dress code. “It relieves all the peer pressure on who's

Furat says she thinks Dove will also help everybody succeed.