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Report
Charter Schools 101
a conversation
Moderators
John Manahan
Educational Consultant
Jill Gaitens
Community Affairs Leader- Hampton Roads
Military Child Education Coalition
Board Member- Green Run Collegiate Charter School
Goals for this Session
 Define what a charter schools is and
offer some history.
 Recognize that the military community
was an early adopter of school choice
and discuss the growth of charter
schools on and near installations.
 Offer guidance regarding development,
authorization, and performance
accountability.
Bruno V. Manno PhD, Senior Advisor for the Systemic K12 Education Reform Focus Area, Walton Family
Foundation
LaShawndra Thornton, Program Officer, Office of
Innovation and Improvement's Charter Schools Program,
U.S. Department of Education
Don Soifer, Executive Vice President of the Lexington
Institute, Board Member, District of Columbia’s Public
Charter School Board
• All parents want high quality, safe schools
for their children.
• Schools located near some installations
are not perceived as high quality or safe.
• Charter Schools on bases are perceived
as “community schools”. *
• Charter Schools are perceived as more
conscious of academic and socioemotional needs of students.
Charter Schools on Military Installations
 Jacksonville Lighthouse Charter School: Flightline Upper
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Academy, Little Rock Air Force Base (AFB), Arkansas;
Sonoran Science Academy Davis Monthan, Davis-Monthan
AFB, Arizona;
Manzanita Public Charter School, Vandenberg AFB, California;
Wheatland Charter Academy, Beale AFB, California;
Sigsbee Charter School, Naval Air Station Key West, Florida;
LEARN 6 North Chicago, Naval Station Great Lakes, Illinois;
Belle Chasse Academy, Naval Air Station/Joint Reserve Station
New Orleans, Louisiana;
Imagine Andrews Public Charter School, Joint Base AndrewsNaval Air Facility, Maryland.
Shared Definition of a Charter School
Charter schools are unique public schools that
are allowed the freedom to be more innovative
while being held accountable for advancing
student achievement. Because they are public
schools, they are:
• Open to all children;
• Do not charge tuition; and
• Do not have special entrance requirements.
National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, 2014
National Alliance for Public Charter Schools (2014)
•
•
•
Local/State Funding:
•
Based on student enrollment
•
On average charters are funded at 61% of their
traditional counterparts1
Federal Funding:
•
Title funds and Special Education funds (through
state)
•
Charter School Program grants
Philanthropy:
•
Several national and regional foundations have
special charter school programs.
Source: 1 – the Center for Education Reform - 2012
Who Authorizes Charter Schools?
Local school board alone
IL, MD, OR, PA, TN, VA, WY
State board of education alone
Local school board and
State board of education
First Local school board then
State board of education
State charter school review board
Local school board and
State charter school commission
Combination (in some cases including
higher
education and not-for-profit)
CT, MA, NJ
AR, DE, LA, NH, NM, RI, TX
AK, IA, KS
D.C., HI
GA, ID, SC, UT
AZ, CA, CO, FL, IN, MI, MN, MO, NV,
NY, NC, OH, OK, WI
Source: National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, State Charter Law Rankings
Database, 2010*Mississippi's charter law expired at the end of 2009, bringing the total to
eleven states without charter school legislation: AL, KY, ME, MS, MT, NE ND, SD, VT,
WA, WV
National Authorizers
100%
Percent of Charter Schools by
Authorizer
75%
53%
50%
20%
25%
14%
8%
4%
0%
Districts
State
Agencies
Independent Higher Ed. Non-Profits
Charter
Institutions
Boards
Source: NASCA: State of Charter School Authorizing: 2010
1%
Mayors
Bruno V. Manno PhD
Senior Advisor for the
Systemic K-12 Education
Reform Focus Area
Walton Family Foundation
Charter Schools
Public schools that usually have
great freedom to be innovative
while being held accountable for
student and achievement and
other results.
Foster partnerships between
parents, educators, and students.
Provide effective education that
prepares students for success in
college, career, and life.
12
Startup Grants Program
Supports creating new charters by
providing grants to developers to launch
new schools; since 1997
Must serve significant number of
low income students in
Foundation’s target urban sites
Grants for up to $250,000
Reviewed by WFF staff and state
and local partners; 3 to 4 month
review process
13
Criteria for Judging an
Application
What is your school design and why
have you chosen it?
Who is your target student group and
community and what are your
enrollment projections?
How will you select your leaders and
teachers and evaluate and support
them?
What results do you expect for your
students?
14
Criteria for Judging
an Application
How will you manage the school,
students, and the enrollment
process?
Who will be on your board?
What are your facility plans?
What is your operating budget?
15
LaShawndra Thornton
Program Officer
Office of Innovation and Improvement
Charter Schools Program
U.S. Department of Education
An Authorizer’s Perspective
Don Soifer
Executive Vice President
of the Lexington Institute
Board Member, District of
Columbia’s Public Charter
School Board

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