Turquoise Trail Charter School will stay at its San Marcos Loop campus through at least 2025 under a lease extension approved Thursday night by the Santa Fe school board.
The state charter school, which has 690 students in prekindergarten through eighth grade, will pay Santa Fe Public Schools around $325,000 a year to continue renting the district-owned campus off N.M. 14, south of the city. The majority of the lease’s terms will stay the same.
“Turquoise Trail has a long history at this site … and we are excited to remain on this site for at least another four years,” Chris Eide, the school’s head administrator, said in a telephone interview.
In 2018, district officials said they didn’t want to renew the lease because they wanted the facility for their own students to help ease crowding in schools on the city’s south side.
That prompted the head of Turquoise Trail’s governing board to threaten legal action if the district tried to force the school to move this summer when its lease was expired. The district eventually allowed Turquoise Trail to stay where it is after the school agreed to make room for more district students.
Turquoise Trail asked for a 10-year extension with two subsequent six-year extensions, but the district declined and countered with a four-year extension, Eide said.
The agreement also must be approved by Turquoise Trail’s governance council, which is expected to vote on the lease next week.
Turquoise Trail opened in the early 1990s as a traditional public school before converting into a district- and later a state-chartered entity.
“Since then, we’ve been a tenant of Santa Fe Public Schools,” Eide said.