Dennis Mope’s dream of running a network of military-themed charter schools for at-risk students ended quickly and with little warning this month in Jacksonville and Orlando.
Two of Mope’s Acclaim Academy charter schools closed abruptly, displacing hundreds of students just three weeks before the end of the school year.
A third school in Kissimmee was supposed to close in March but Osceola County’s school district took it over last month and will keep it open until the school year ends in June.
Five other of Mope’s planned Acclaim Academies never got off the ground.
Although one received district approval to open in Palm Beach next August, the plan was scrapped. Four other charter school applications in Pinellas, Hillsborough, Volusia and Lee counties were all withdrawn, some before they were rejected by the school districts involved.
In Jacksonville, the fallout was immediate and unexpected.