10/7/11 Charter News Round-Up

October 7, 2011

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CCSA Releases African American Student Performance Report

This week, CCSA released the much anticipated Chartering and Choice as an Achievement Gap-Closing Reform: The Success of California Charter Schools in Promoting African American Achievement report, detailing African American student performance in California's charter schools. The report is the culmination of years of research. CCSA hosted a news conference in Sacramento, where results were phenomenal. Watch CCSA's president and CEO Jed Wallace in an interview with local NBC affiliate KCRA, and read stories in the online publication EdSource and local newspaper Sacramento Observer.

Also, visit www.ccsa.org/africanamericanreport to download a copy of the report and learn more about its findings.

Public School Choice 3.0

As the Los Angeles Unified School District's third round of the Public School Choice (PSC) initiative quickly approaches, many are calling for a return to the original concept. Approved in 2009, Public School Choice was meant to be a reform effort to allow operators--including charter schools--to apply for new and low-performing schools identified by the district. That idea has shifted in the last months. For more, read the article in the Los Angeles Times discussing LAUSD Superintendent Deasy's request to the board for impartiality in the process, as well as a detailed editorial in the Los Angeles Times.

Trade Tech High Lives Up To Its Promise

Over the past decade, California's precarious economic situation has impacted public education. Many traditional public schools have coped with constant cuts in funding by eliminating programs and electives from their schools, including vocational education. Charter schools statewide are attempting to fill that void, and one school in particular, Trade Tech High in the San Diego area, was highlighted this week for its work with students. Read the column in the North County Times.

More District-Charter Compacts

In an attempt to improve collaborations between school districts and charter schools, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation spearheaded a move last year to support the creation of "compacts" nationwide. Last year, the Los Angeles Unified Schools District was the first in California to approve the deal, and now, the Sacramento City Unified School District is joining the effort. After months of work, an agreement was reached that will address many concerns for local charters, as well as allow collaboration on best practices, long-term facilities solutions, and more. Read more on the Educated Guess blog.

Good News

To wrap up this week, we want to highlight some positive stories about charter schools throughout the state. EGP News, for instance, featured KIPP Raíces in an article celebrating their new facilities. Previously, the students had been divided into two separate sites. LAUSD Board President Mónica García was there for the unveiling.

Also, after almost a year of legal battles, two Celerity charters have officially opened their doors in the Compton area. Read what happened, and why this battle was worth fighting in the Los Angeles Wave.

And Rocketship is forging ahead with plans to open charter schools in the Santa Clara County Area. The San Jose Mercury News has that story.

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