Knowledge Core Keyword: School Accountability

Great Expectations in New Orleans

New Orleans, a city remaking itself with perseverance and ingenuity after the devastating Hurricane Katrina and subsequent flooding in 2005, sought to provide high-quality educational options for the city’s children through the …

Core Reporting Timeline

One way that authorizers can strengthen their ability to provide rigorous and consistent oversight and evaluation, minimize burdens on schools, and increase the likelihood that schools will meet their obligations is to develop, publicize, and follow a fixed, streamlined, and well-thought-out reporting timeline. The NACSA Core Reporting Timeline is provided as an example. The requirements and due dates listed are for illustrative purposes only, and are not exhaustive. This tool is intended to be customized by authorizers to meet their local context and to match their own reporting requirements. Authorizers should only require and track submissions that are contractually required and should make sure that all required submissions are included in their reporting timeline. Schools should know exactly when required information is due and in what format so that there are no surprises. Whenever possible, authorizers should consolidate submissions and reporting deadlines and coordinate collection efforts with other agencies.

Growing Great Schools in New Jersey

“I don’t think that would work too well here; we’re pretty unique.”

Authorizers around the country have said this since the first authorizing shop opened in Minnesota in 1992. Sometimes, the concern is well-founded. Not every problem requires an identical solution.

But as the charter school sector expands and matures, the database of what’s needed and what works grows more robust. Certain patterns have emerged and NACSA is paying close attention to them.

This case study is one in a series that explores local progress on charter school authorizing in various corners of our country. We’ll dig into what was needed, how it happened, and why it matters to the ultimate quest we’re all on: creating and sustaining great public schools for all U.S. children.

The series continues on our nation’s East Coast, in New Jersey, a microcosm of all the promise and problems in our nation’s public school system. We pay attention to New Jersey—a state that has been chartering schools since 1997—for its dramatic efforts to improve authorizing practices during the last few years. They have stepped away from mere compliance into the light of performance, shaking up the status quo and deciding that “as good as” wasn’t good enough for their charter school sector.

Anecdotes Aren’t Enough: An Evidence-Based Approach to Accountability for Alternative Charter Schools (Webinar Presentation)

Authorizers are challenged to hold each alternative charter school accountable for its performance. NACSA convened a working group of uthorizers, operators, and researchers to define the parameters of good practice when it comes to evaluating alternative charter schools. The group’s findings are presented in NACSA’s new report, Anecdotes Aren’t Enough: An Evidence-Based Approach to Accountability for Alternative Charter Schools.

This presentation is from a webinar panel discussion with working group members Ernie Silva, Director of External Affairs for SIATech (California); Naomi DeVeaux, Deputy Director of D.C. Public Charter School Board; and Nelson Smith, Senior Advisor for NACSA. The panelists discuss NACSA’s new report, Anecdotes Aren’t Enough: An Evidence-Based Approach to Accountability for Alternative Charter Schools and the implications of its findings for authorizers, schools, and policy-makers.

Want to learn more on this topic prior to the webinar? Read Anecdotes Aren’t Enough: An Evidence-Based Approach to Accountability for Alternative Charter Schools and share our summary of recommendations with your staff, colleagues, and board members.

Anecdotes Aren’t Enough: An Evidence-Based Approach to Accountability for Alternative Charter Schools

Authorizers are challenged to hold each alternative charter school accountable for its performance. NACSA convened a working group of authorizers, operators, and researchers to define the parameters of good practice when it comes to evaluating alternative charter schools. The group’s findings are presented in this new report from NACSA.

Alignment for Change in Hawaii

This case study is one in a series that explores local progress on charter school authorizing in various corners of our country. We’ll dig into what was needed, how it happened, and why it matters to the ultimate quest we all share: creating and sustaining great public schools for all U.S. children.

The series starts in our nation’s most far-flung locale: Hawaii.

Accountability in Action: A Comprehensive Guide to Charter School Closure

This Comprehensive Guide to Charter School Closure is designed to assist the staff and board members of authorizing agencies as they address the wide array of challenges involved in any closure decision. It draws directly upon the successful experiences of other authorizers across the country and includes useful information on performance management, decision-making, and stakeholder communication, as well as practical tools to successfully manage a charter school closure.

Accountability in Action: A Comprehensive Guide to Charter School Closure

This Comprehensive Guide to Charter School Closure is designed to assist the staff and board members of authorizing agencies as they address the wide array of challenges involved in any closure decision. It draws directly upon the successful experiences of other authorizers across the country and includes useful information on performance management, decision-making, and stakeholder communication, as well as practical tools to successfully manage a charter school closure.

The Nuts and Bolts of School Closure – PowerPoint Presentation

Managing the actual closure of a charter school requires planning, preparation, and attention to details that linger long after a school is closed. This session provides a roadmap through the basic elements of the closure process, including how to prepare the environment for closure, how to monitor the close out of student records, finances, education corporation documents, and other requirements that must be addressed when charters fail. Presenters will provide critical information to help guide authorizers through an effective closure process.

Mary Kay Shields, Gov. John Engler Center for Charter Schools at Central Michigan University; Kathryn Mullen Upton, Thomas B. Fordham Foundation Ohio; Josephine Baker, Education Consultant

When It Really Matters: Charter Renewal Decisions at the State University of New York

The charter renewal decision is one of the most significant high stakes decision in public education. It determines the continuing existence or termination of a school. It has the potential to be a celebration of the accomplishments and success of a school—and its students—that was built from the ground up a few years earlier. On the other hand, it may be the public declaration that a school did not live up to its promises to the public or to the parents and students that chose to attend.

Viewpoint: Authorizing Online Learning

“During this decade, American education will shift from print to digital, from flat and sequential content to engaging and adaptive, and from batch processing to personalized learning. There will also be a slow enrollment shift from traditional district-operated schools to schools and programs operated by organizations authorized under contracts or charter.

As chief executive officer and chair of the International Association for K–12 Online Learning (iNACOL), we believe that one of the most important drivers of this historic shift is online learning. It is growing by more than 40 percent annually and creating new full- and part-time options for students and families. This paper refers specifically to online schools where instruction is delivered remotely by live teachers on a full- and part-time basis, also known as virtual or cyber learning.