Free Charter School Governance Academy for Charter Leaders and Board Members

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September 19, 2011 The California Charter School Governance Academy is a free, four hour, intensive workshop designed to help school leaders and governing board members increase their knowledge of their ethical and legal obligations as stewards of public institutions. Nationally renowned experts and experienced attorneys will present current charter school governance best practices, as well as key legal and compliance issues for charter schools. The Academy is also an opportunity to network with other charter schools in your area.

The Academy will focus on proven charter school best practices, including:

  • Creating and sustaining an effective charter school board
  • Effective school policies, academic and fiscal oversight responsibilities that every board member must know
  • Protocols and tools effective board meetings
  • Revamping a reactive board into an effective and strategic one
  • Tips on avoiding common mistakes and using volunteers' time efficiently

As well as on key legal and compliance issues for California charter schools, such as:

  • The Brown Act
  • Conflict of Interest issues including the Political Reform Act and Government Code 1090
  • Leading attorneys will be available to answer questions and address specific concerns raised by the Fair Political Practices Commission regarding compliance with Form 700 obligations and recent actions by granting agencies that have led to revocation and non-renewal of charter schools.


Dates: Oct. 18 - Oakland - 8:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. - Location TBD
Oct. 19 - Los Angeles - 5 - 8:30 p.m. - Renaissance Arts Academy (1800 Colorado Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90041)

Oct. 20 - San Diego - Time TBD - Location TBD

Times are tentative and subject to confirmation


Marci Cornell-Feist
Founder & Chief Executive Officer, The High Bar

Marci Cornell-Feist is considered a national expert on charter school governance. She founded her charter school consultancy Meetinghouse Solutions in 2001, and has focused on charter school governance since the mid 1990s. After working with 200+ charter schools, she created The High Bar to implement the most effective strategies and practices of her many clients, and as a means of spreading this information to a wider audience of charter schools.

Oakland Attorney: John C. Lemmo
Senior Counsel, Procopio

John C. Lemmo is a member of Procopio's Public Agencies and Charter Schools Practice Group, and represents public agencies, private developers and landowners in matters involving environmental and land use regulation and litigation. He also provides general and specialized counseling to charter schools, school districts, water districts and municipalities regarding governance, operational, and business matters. He has extensive experience working with and on behalf of local and state governmental and regulatory agencies on permitting, entitlement, compliance, California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), and enforcement matters.

Los Angeles and San Diego Attorney: Jerry W. Simmons
Partner, Middleton Young & Minney

Jerry W. Simmons received his Juris Doctorate from the Pepperdine University School of Law. He received his Masters degree in Education Policy and Administration from Harvard University, and his Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from San Jose State University. Mr. Simmons' practice includes a focus on board governance, , policy development, and compliance with the Brown Act and the Political Reform Act. Mr. Simmons has presented numerous workshops for the California Charter Schools Association.

Alice Miller
Director, Knowledge Management, CCSA

Alice Miller is a recognized leader in charter school development and technical assistance. In her role as Director of Knowledge Management she provides charter school leaders with information and training on all charter school issues, including finance, board governance, and petition development. Alice helped start the first charter school in California and has been deeply involved in the charter movement ever since.