Mazel tov: Yeshiva school buys shuttered charter school site in North Miami

ASPIRA shut down the charter school after years of financial troubles
By Keith Larsen | August 02, 2019 01:00PM

Achikam Yogev, 13300 Memorial Highway (Credit: Google Maps)

Achikam Yogev, 13300 Memorial Highway (Credit: Google Maps)

The parent company of Yeshiva Elementary School paid $6.8 million for a shuttered charter school site in North Miami, The Real Deal has learned.

Aspira of Florida sold the now-closed 53,685-square-foot Aspira Raul Arnaldo Martinez charter school at 13300 Memorial Highway for $126 per square foot, records show.

The school in North Miami will be an extension of Yeshiva Elementary School’s existing campus in Miami Beach.

Colliers International South Florida’s Achikam Yogev represented Aspira of Florida in the sale.

Yogev said the site was attractive for the Yeshiva because the property is already zoned for a school. Generally, he said, zoning is a barrier for charter schools.

The 2.34-acre property last sold in 1997 for $754,000, records show.

In January, Aspira of Florida’s board of directors decided to voluntarily close group’s three charter schools effective June 30. Before the school on Memorial Highway shut down, it had 362 students enrolled in grades six through eight, according to an auditor’s report filed with the state of Florida. The school faced serious financial troubles, the report showed. It had losses of $70,078 in 2016, $160,929 in 2017, and $307,641in 2018.

Yeshiva Elementary School, which provides a Jewish education, was founded in 1987 and has grown to approximately 500 students, according to its website.

Some developers in South Florida are finding charter schools to be an attractive investment as parents seek alternative schooling options for their children amid a growing population.

In May, Aventura-based ESJ Capital Partners sold the Sunshine Elementary Charter School & Paragon Academy of Technology at 502 North 28th Avenue in Hollywood for $6.7 million. At that time, the firm had 23 charter and privately-owned schools within its portfolio, with a value of more than $350 million.

Last summer, Jeffrey Miller, the brother of Lennar executive chairman Stuart Miller bought a charter school in Opa-locka for $8.45 million.