Charter school is expanding


Paul St­adel­ber­ger, CEO of New Found­a­tions Charter School, last week told mem­bers of the Holmes­burg Civic As­so­ci­ation that the school fi­nally has pur­chased a build­ing to ac­com­mod­ate a high school ex­pan­sion.

Stu­dents in kinder­garten through eighth grade at­tend classes in the main build­ing at Tor­res­dale Av­en­ue and Rhawn Street.

New Found­a­tions ad­ded a high school two years ago. The fresh­men and sopho­mores at­tend classes in the build­ing that houses Frank­lin Towne Charter High School, loc­ated in the Ar­sen­al Busi­ness Cen­ter, at 5301 Ta­cony St.

The re­cently pur­chased three-story build­ing, at 4850 Rhawn St., houses Eureka Met­al & Glass on the first floor. That com­pany will even­tu­ally va­cate the prop­erty.

In­teri­or con­struc­tion will start in a couple of weeks, and St­adel­ber­ger be­lieves the high school classrooms will be ready to be oc­cu­pied “Decem­ber­ish.”

Next year’s fresh­men will re­main on the Tor­res­dale and Rhawn cam­pus un­til the new build­ing is ready.

As for two build­ings at­tached to the three-story prop­erty, one will be knocked down and re­placed by a gym­nas­i­um and the oth­er will be de­mol­ished to make way for an aud­it­or­i­um.

Some neigh­bors com­plained that par­ents double-park and cre­ate prob­lems at the start and end of the school day. St­adel­ber­ger said he has had little suc­cess per­suad­ing par­ents to avoid double-park­ing.

“I get cursed at,” he said.

Mean­while, New Found­a­tions raised $7,600 for the Leuk­emia and Lymph­oma So­ci­ety of East­ern Pennsylvania through a “Pen­nies for Pa­tients” drive. Car­oline Page, the char­ity’s loc­al dir­ect­or, ac­cep­ted a check last week dur­ing a form­al present­a­tion with stu­dents and fac­ulty.

In oth­er news from the April 10 meet­ing:

• The or­gan­iz­a­tion ob­served a mo­ment of si­lence for Robert Neary and Daniel Sweeney, the two Phil­adelphia fire­fight­ers killed on duty on April 9.

• The civic group voted 17-1 in fa­vor of a bid by Liberty Bell Bi­cycles to build an ad­di­tion that will be used as a re­pair area and show­room space.

The shop has been loc­ated at 7741 Frank­ford Ave. for the last five years after four dec­ades across the street, next to the fire­house.

The busi­ness needs ap­prov­al from the Zon­ing Board of Ad­just­ment and asked the group to back its ef­fort to by­pass a re­quire­ment to land­scape the peri­met­er of the prop­erty. Such ex­tens­ive land­scap­ing would be costly and cut down the num­ber of park­ing spots and the area used to test-ride new and re­paired bikes.

• Lisa Dee­ley, an aide to City Coun­cil­man Bobby Hen­on, spoke about his Bad Neigh­bor Ini­ti­at­ive. The ini­ti­at­ive tar­gets main­ten­ance is­sues and il­leg­al activ­ity that cause prop­erty val­ues to drop, qual­ity of neigh­bor­hoods to de­cline and com­munity mor­ale to fade.

Hen­on wants res­id­ents to re­port prop­erty main­ten­ance prob­lems to 311 and il­leg­al activ­ity to 911. Land­lords or res­id­ents that need help to com­ply with the law can call his of­fice at 215-686-3444 or the De­part­ment of Li­censes and In­spec­tions at 215-686-8686.

Mean­while, Hen­on is de­vel­op­ing a City­Hall App that will al­low users to sub­mit ser­vice re­quest cases from their iPhone and oth­er devices. A second ver­sion, to be re­leased later, will func­tion on An­droid devices. Res­id­ents and busi­ness own­ers can send along pic­tures and in­form­a­tion about is­sues such as graf­fiti, potholes, ab­sent­ee land­lords and bad neigh­bors.

Dee­ley an­nounced that Hen­on will open a dis­trict of­fice in a couple of weeks at 6730 Tor­res­dale Ave. Hours will be week­days from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

“In­stead of go­ing all the way down to City Hall, you can stop in and see a staff per­son,” Dee­ley said.

More in­form­a­tion is avail­able at www.bobby­hen­

• Joe Nicoletti, pres­id­ent of the Ta­cony/Holmes­burg Town Watch, asked people to turn on the lights on their front and back porches at night as a way to dis­cour­age crime, in­clud­ing tire-slash­ing.

“A well-lit street can do won­ders in de­ter­ring crime,” he said.

Nicoletti said area prob­lems in­clude the thefts of pro­pane tanks from gas grills and the ap­pear­ance of pros­ti­tutes along Frank­ford Av­en­ue from Stan­wood Street to Welsh Road. He said one of the ladies told him she has HIV.

The group will meet on Thursday, May 10, at 7 p.m., at Ta­cony Baptist Church, at Dis­ston and He­ger­man streets. Per­son­nel from the 15th Po­lice Dis­trict will be in at­tend­ance.

To join the group or re­port crime, go to

• State Rep. Kev­in Boyle (D-172nd dist.) ex­plained that the Pennsylvania De­part­ment of Health will not con­sider is­su­ing a per­mit for a pro­posed meth­adone clin­ic at Frank­ford Av­en­ue and Dec­atur Street as long as the mat­ter is in lit­ig­a­tion.

The Zon­ing Board of Ad­just­ment last month re­voked per­mits gran­ted by the city De­part­ment of Li­censes and In­spec­tions to the op­er­at­or of the planned clin­ic.

The op­er­at­or of the clin­ic ap­pealed that de­cision to Com­mon Pleas Court.

On oth­er is­sues, Boyle said he has spoken to Gov. Tom Corbett about his bill that would re­quire em­ploy­ees of in­sti­tu­tions to re­port cases of sexu­al ab­use to law en­force­ment and not merely fol­low an in-house chain of com­mand. The le­gis­lat­or ac­ted after the Jerry San­dusky/Penn State scan­dal.

Boyle be­lieves a meas­ure sim­il­ar to his will be in­cluded in a pack­age of bills that will be un­veiled in the sum­mer in re­sponse to the scan­dal.

• The civic as­so­ci­ation will have a table at this Sat­urday’s flea mar­ket at New Found­a­tions Charter School. The group is look­ing for dona­tions of new or gently used items to be sold. Items can be dropped off at Holmes­burg Re­cre­ation Cen­ter, at Rhawn and Dit­man streets, this Fri­day from 6:30 to 8 p.m. and this Sat­urday from 9 a.m. to noon.

• Holmes­burg Civic As­so­ci­ation will meet on Tues­day, May 8, at 7:15 p.m., at Holmes­burg Re­cre­ation Cen­ter. The guest will be Louis Giorla,.com­mis­sion­er of the pris­on sys­tem. ••


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