Chinese investor offers $100K for former Elgin school

发布日期:2016/1/7 14:19:52 点击次数:[]

A private boarding school and a treatment center described as possibly the biggest of its type in the Midwest are among the proposals for the shuttered Fox River Country Day School in Elgin.

The city which owns the site received the two proposals last month for the 19-acre property.

The private school proposal is backed by Chinese investor Hongwei "Wayne" Zhao owner and president of Telansun Information System Technology in Beijing. He is offering $100000 to buy the property and contribute as much as $900000 for site improvements according to documents obtained by the Daily Herald via a Freedom of Information Act request.

Ivy Bridge International an education consulting company based in Illinois and B2B Convergence of Algonquin would partner with Zhao.

Meanwhile the treatment center plan is proffered by the nonprofit Restoration America Inc. based in Hoffman Estates along with investors Michael Oremus and his wife Kyle.

Oremus owns Illinois Brick and is a past owner of Prairie Materials based in Bridgeview documents state.

City Manager Sean Stegall said staff members are still reviewing the proposals which he plans to discuss with the city council next month.

A third proposal was submitted by a group that wants to open a charter school but has since signed a letter of intent to lease a different site in Elgin.

Earlier this year the city estimated the property needed about $3.2 million in repairs to be turned into a school. The city council approved spending about $647000 to replace the roofs of three buildings on the campus.

The treatment center

Restoration America Executive Director Charles Konkus said the facility would provide both day and residential treatment mostly for up to six months.

The center would focus on a "holistic healing approach to treatment" for clients suffering from a range of conditions -- from chronic fatigue to stress and substance abuse -- along with specialized programs for veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder.

The group has $5 million for acquisition and improvements on the property he said. Future operations would rely on state and federal funding along with fundraising he said.

Restoration America runs single-family homes for veterans; it is currently building about 35 such homes in Braidwood Illinois Konkus said.

The buildings on the campus have roof and mold damage; underground fuel tanks that used to heat the school will have to be removed he said.

"This is going to take a lot of work to make it environmentally safe and usable for years to come" he said.

Still the first patients could be treated as early as spring he said.

The treatment center would be among the largest if not the largest of its kind in Midwest he said.

"We're going to make it a facility for Elgin to be proud of" he said.

The private school

A possible name for the early childhood to 12th grade school is Chicago Northwest Lincoln Academy said project manager Kojo Darkwa president of B2b Convergence.

The school would be open to students from across the country and abroad especially China and Asia he said. Boarding would be offered for students in seventh through 12th grades.

Tuition would range from $3000 for a half-day for 2-year-olds to $18500 for high schoolers. Boarding school would cost $40000 yearly.

The school also would offer scholarships and financial aid Darkwa said.

"We'll create a unique private school that focuses on assessments and will be child-centric so kids have the ability to study above their grade level" he said.

Telansun USA was founded in August in Chicago with the purpose of submitting the Elgin proposal which would be the company's first U.S. investment Darkwa said.

Darkwa said he worked for about six months as director of admissions and business development at Fox River Country Day School which had been in business for 98 years before closing due to financial difficulties in 2011.

"I've been wanting to do this for a long time" he said. "I believe in the Elgin area."


来源:daily herald 每日先驱报

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