Undaunted by the San Francisco Unified School District Board of Education’s May 11 decision to deny a charter for their school, Mission Preparatory School officials said recently that they have appealed their request to the state.

“California charter law provides for a state appeal process,” says Jane Henzerling, the K-8 charter school’s founder. “We are already moving forward with the next steps.”

The board cited insufficient staffing, traditional student discipline, improper salaries for teachers and financial deficiency in the school’s food budget in denying the charter.

The board also found cause for concern in the lack of adequate English as a Second Language programs to support Chinese-American English-language learners.

Several board members commended Mission Prep for its dedication to the intended student body and its mission to offer a longer school year and extra support to prepare students for college.

Now the school’s fate is in the hands of the Charter Schools Division of the California Department of Education and the Advisory Commission on Charter Schools, both of which will review its application. Ultimately, the State Board of Education will make the final decision to grant or deny the charter.

The final vote by the state board is expected to take place this fall, which, if the charter is granted, allows the school a full year to plan before opening in August 2011.

Since 1992, the board has approved 30 of the 74 charter appeals it has received. Ten petitions were rejected and 28 were withdrawn before official review. The board did not take formal action on three petitions, and another three have yet to be reviewed.

Regardless of the state’s decision, Henzerling says she will “continue working to ensure underserved and underperforming students get access to the high-quality educational opportunities they deserve.”