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Ag charter school in Ohio short on students

AKRON, Ohio – An urban charter school specializing in agricultural education is struggling to generate student interest.

The Akron Beacon Journal reported Saturday that Next Frontier Academy had only 35 of 150 student openings filled when it opened last week. Akron’s newest charter school is in the former Holy Trinity United Methodist Church.

Co-founder John Hairston said supporters needed to see the school for seventh- through ninth-graders operational before jumping in.

The newspaper reported Hairston and two undisclosed investors spent $22,000 on furniture, thousands on books, materials and rent, $9,000 to paint the interior of the 60-year-old church and an unexpected $10,000 to upgrade the building’s electrical system. State grants totaling almost $90,000 must be returned if 75 students don’t eventually enroll.

Future construction plans include a greenhouse and chicken coop.

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