Its like many other competitions - one prize and two groups that want it. But when it comes to competition for the third and final slot for an open enrollment charter school in the first congressional district, the future of Arkansas students hangs in the balance. The Little Rock District denied requests for the formation of the Little Scholars of Arkansas or LISA Academy. The Learning Academy for Urban Leaders Charter or LAFUL was denied by the Pulaski County Special School District. Thats why both sets of hopeful school administrators came to the State Board of Education today to make their case. LAFUL touts a curriculum catering to African-American children based on a democratic classroom model. In LAFUL classrooms children would participate more in organizing the school days and picking topics to be discussed. Organizers also believe that by offering adult education classes on campus during an extended school day theyll increase parent involvement. They believe schools suffer in that area because parents arent educated enough to help their kids the way they should. Dr. Brenda Bowles with the PCSSD says LAFUL would only pull students away from speciality programs the districts fought hard to stabilize. In Little Rock, school board members are fighting LISA. They say the school idea started by UALR professors only duplicates rigorous programs the district already offers. Members are also concerned that the school would not seek to help the disadvantaged as the charter school law states. Instead they believe it would only skim off the districts academic all-stars. Baker Kurrus cites LISAs decision to not offer bussing as proof that its not catering to all kids. After todays hearing the state board of education could have voted on the matters right away like members did last month when converting the Arkansas Virtual School into a charter. But, without a quorum present by the end of the presentations, the board decided to take up the proposals again next month.