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Imagine Penn Hills Charter seeks to keep modular classrooms

| Monday, May 20, 2013, 9:00 p.m.

Officials from the Imagine Penn Hills Charter School of Entrepreneurship are hoping to keep modular classrooms on their Penn School Road Campus for another year to accommodate increased enrollment.

They postponed an appearance before Penn Hills Council this month, but plan to attend the June 10 council meeting to request the extension.

Council last June approved a temporary expansion at the school: six modular classroom trailers to house third-grade students as part of a conditional-use agreement.

Imagine's long-term plan was to serve kindergarten through second grade in 2011-12, and add one grade level each year as the inaugural class of students moves up. Next year the school is expected to add a fourth grade as its third-graders move up.

One of the conditions council placed on Imagine was that the trailers must be removed no later than 30 days after the end of the school year.

Imagine's final school day for students is June 14.

Officials do have a backup plan in place. Imagine and its subsidiary, Schoolhouse Finance LLC, received a zoning variance in 2012 allowing them to use space in the Parkway East Professional Center off of Frankstown Road as additional classroom space if necessary, according to Imagine Regional Director Mubuso Zamchiya.

Imagine Penn Hills officials did not return calls seeking comment by press time.

The Penn Hills Planning Commission will hear Imagine's request at its May meeting, scheduled for today, Thursday, at 7 p.m. in the council chambers at the municipal building, 12245 Frankstown Road.

The council meeting is scheduled for June 10 at 7:30 p.m. in the municipal building. For more information, call the planning office at 412-798-2127.

Patrick Varine is an editor for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7845 or pvarine@tribweb.com.

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