York Prep in new buildings but doesn’t own them

rsouthmayd@heraldonline.comNovember 29, 2013 

York County is home to one public charter school, with another set to open this fall.

York Preparatory Academy was first approved in 2009 and opened its doors in 2010, occupying the former Trinity Christian School in Rock Hill after several other arrangements for property fell through.

In 2011, the school signed a contract with Hock RH, LLC, to build a new, 43-acre campus on Eastview Road. Hock owns the land and buildings, and York Prep leases it.

The first three buildings, a lower school, middle school and student union, opened in 2012 and the upper school building opened in August. None of the buildings has a cafeteria.

At a York Prep Governing Board meeting earlier this month, administrators expressed concern about the small number of computers available to students.

The initial contract signed by York Prep and Hock in 2011 set the purchase price for the property, should York Prep want to buy it, at nearly $30 million.

According to the latest state report cards, York Prep spent $6,174 per pupil in the 2012-13 school year, more than $2,500 less than the Rock Hill school district spent per student.

The second charter school, Riverwalk Academy, got approval last summer. Despite a projected opening date of August 2014, Riverwalk currently lacks a facility, although the school’s founders say they hope to build a new school before the first day of classes.

Rachel Southmayd •  803-329-4072

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