Board OKs charter school with required Arabic classes

By Mary MacDonald

The Fulton County school board has approved a first for metro Atlanta: a public elementary school that will require students to learn Arabic. 

Amana Academy, a start-up charter school, is expected to open in August in an undetermined location in Sandy Springs or south Roswell. With board approval, the charter proponents say they can proceed with negotiations on a site. 

The state Board of Education also has to approve the application, but the state coordinator for charter schools has told Amana proponents it should not be a problem, said Ehab Jaleel, one of several dozen Fulton parents who organized the charter school.

Amana Academy will feature daily Arabic lessons, an emphasis on group projects, separation of boys and girls for academics, and a community service requirement. 

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