October 2010

10/29/10 Charter News Round-Up

Charter school news for the week ending October 29, 2010.

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CDE Public Charter Schools Grant Program Application Webinar

To coincide with the launch of the 2010-2015 PCSGP application, the CED’s Charter Schools Division will host an informational webinar at 10:00 a.m. on Thursday, November 4, 2010. This webinar will provide guidance on the 2010-2015 PCSGP grant cycle.

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10/22/10 Charter News Round-Up

Charter school news for the week ending October 22, 2010.

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Union-Tribune Response: Focus on Reform, Not Lotteries

The San Diego Union-Tribune has published several opinion pieces recently in regards to the Waiting for “Superman” documentary, which highlights the use of lotteries by charters where enrollment is oversubscribed. In none of these U-T pieces did the author correctly inform readers that charter schools must use lotteries mandated by both federal and state law when the number of applicants for their school exceeds the seats available.

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In Spite of Obstacles, Charter Schools Provide Food Services to Students

The Bureau of State Audits (BSA) released a report this week on child nutrition programs at charter schools, and the level of participation in the federal meal programs, due to a request by the Joint Legislative Audit Committee earlier this year. CCSA is encouraged by the results of the audit, as it shows that most charter schools participate in the federal School Breakfast Program and the National School Lunch Program, despite not being required to do so.

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Nutrition Programs at Charter Schools

Charter schools are committed to providing quality educational services to low income pupils. Many charter schools participate in the federal meal program, yet others choose to engage in alternate meal options (i.e. catering, parent information). Challenges to operating a compliant and safe food service program are many, and vary by charter school. This fact sheet contains information about nutrition programs at charter schools, as well as about an October 2010 Bureau of State Audits report called “Charter Schools and Nutrition.”

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Upcoming Workshops Address Critical Facilities Issues

Identifying and securing adequate facilities for charter students is a challenging task for many of our state’s charter schools. CCSA and the Coalition for Adequate School Housing (C.A.S.H.) are co-sponsoring workshops to assist charter organizations and charter schools in addressing critical facility issues.

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In Its 18th Year, Charter Schools Conference Offers Networking, Resources

The first charter school in California opened in 1993. That same year, the pioneers of the California charter school movement held the first California Charter Schools Conference in one small hotel conference room. Today the California Charter Schools Conference is a huge event attended by 2,500 charter leaders, teachers and supporters from throughout the state. In 2011, we will have more than 200 businesses on site as exhibitors. There will be more than 150 breakout sessions covering everything from governance training to online learning. We will also have engrossing sessions about fighting for your school at the local, state and federal level.

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Workshops Help with Starting a High-Quality Charter School

October 20 marks the first session in a free four-part online webinar series called “Starting a High-Quality Charter School.” The series provides participants with an understanding of the school development process and the building blocks necessary to develop a charter school.

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Getting to Know: James Wilcox, CEO of Aspire Public Schools

If you tuned in to Oprah earlier this month, you would have seen Bill Gates talking about the new documentary Waiting For “Superman” and what’s wrong in public education. You would also see, in the front row, a group of charter school leaders, including James Willcox, CEO of Aspire Public Schools, whose programs were held up as an example of what a great school can be. We sat down with James to hear about his involvement with the movement, his brush with fame on “Oprah,” and his thoughts on “Superman.”

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Prop. 39 Success Story: Higher Learning Academy

Proposition 39, a law passed by California voters in 2000, grants charter school students equal access to school district facilities, if charters are able to meet certain eligibility requirements. This story celebrates Sacramento’s Higher Learning Academy’s successful application for Prop. 39 facilities.

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10/15/10 Charter News Round-Up

Charter school news for the week ending October 15, 2010.

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October 2010 Spotlight on Success

The charter school movement is dependent upon the hard work of visionary founders, leaders, and authorizers, plus dedicated teachers and volunteers and inspired students. The Association is proud to recognize several of them this month.

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Highlights of the 2010-11 State Budget

the Governor has signed the state budget agreement for Fiscal Year 2010-2011. This is the latest that the Legislature has ever approved a spending plan, due annually on July 1, the start of California’s fiscal year. If you haven’t had time to read the full Budget Brief, here is some information on public charter school-related budget items.

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Legislative Session Wrap-Up

The 2010 Legislative session officially ended on August 31, with the Governor having one month after the end of session to sign or veto legislation. Importantly to charter school supporters, Governor Schwarzenegger vetoed two pieces of legislation that CCSA opposed, AB 572 and AB 2543. He also signed AB 184, which provides relief for cash-strapped school districts struggling to cope with ongoing budget shortfalls.

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October Deferral Exemption Deadline is Friday

As we understand it, the state’s current plan is to defer most or all payments of K-12 apportionments in October and to repay them all by November 15, 2010. Applications for exemption from the deferrals are due by statute on October 15, 2010.

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CCSA Applauds Governor and Legislature For Budget That Protects and Promotes Charter School Growth

Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed the 2011-11 State Budget today, protecting critical funding for charter schools. Jed Wallace, President and CEO of the California Charter Schools Association, issued this statement in response.

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10/8/10 Charter News Round-Up

Charter school news for the week ending October 8, 2010.

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Join the Waiting for "Superman" Virtual Town Hall

You are Invited to a Virtual Town Hall on Public Education in America. Join Arianna Huffington, Joel Klein, Davis Guggenheim, and others in a conversation with online participants across the country as they discuss Waiting for “Superman” and the topic that has America talking. The Town Hall will take place Friday, October 8, at 4:00 p.m. PDT.

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Live from New York City... The Movie Review

Cameron Curry is Executive Director of The Classical Academies organization, which is made up of three successful public charter schools in San Diego County. He also serves as the Independent Study Schools Representative on CCSA’s. Here, he shares his review of Waiting for “Superman,” a documentary that has everyone talking about education reform.

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Don't Wait for "Superman"

Waiting for “Superman” is a powerful and courageous film. It shows that great schools come from great teachers. And it exposes the forces that deny children more of both. The California Charter Schools Association is an official partner of the Done Waiting Advocacy Coalition and we want you to support it too.

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Answer the Call!

This Friday, October 8, 2010, is the deadline to submit a proposal in response to our Call for Presentations for the 18th Annual California Charter Schools Conference. Presenting at the conference is a way to share your experience and knowledge with 2,500 attendees from charter schools across California.

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Fact Sheet: Chartering and Choice as an Achievement Gap-Closing Reform

CCSA report demonstrates the success of California charter schools in promoting African American achievement

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10/1/10 Charter News Round-Up

Charter school news for the week ending October 1, 2010.

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Press Contact

If you are a member of the news media, please contact Emily Galbreth at: (412) 559-8571 or egalbreth@calcharters.org.

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