One of the distinguishing characteristics of the charter school movement is that charter school leaders and staff have the opportunity to design a curriculum to focus on specific interest areas. For example, some charter schools focus on fine arts, others reflect the culture of their community, and this charter school focuses on law and democracy. For Earth Day, I wanted to showcase three charter schools that are using the environment and sustainability to educate students.
Green Street Academy is not your typical school. This West Baltimore charter school is known for a hands-on teaching strategy that incorporates farming vegetables, raising tilapia, and maintaining a chicken coop for fresh eggs. The school sells produce to local restaurants and runs a community-supported agriculture (CSA) program for students’ families. This year, the school brings that curriculum to their new location, the former Gwynn Falls Park Junior High, which has been empty for 30 years.
Posted in Successes
On Friday, the Washington State Supreme Court rejected the voter-approved public charter school law based on a century-old precedent and said that public charter schools cannot receive “common school” public funds because they are not overseen by elected boards.
Posted in State Government Issues
In honor of the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, Louisiana Congressman Steve Scalise visited Edward Hynes Charter School in New Orleans.
Posted in Back to School
Washington D.C. has cracked down on parents from Maryland and Virginia who lie about where they live so that their children can attend D.C. schools. Education Watchdog reports that D.C. officials conducted 70 investigations for residency fraud last year. The stakes are high for these parents: those who commit residency fraud face up to 90 days in jail and may be required to pay back tuition, which can come in at $15,000 per year.
Posted in News
In April, U.S. News & World Report released its 2014 Best High Schools Rankings, and 24 public charter schools are among the top 100. Three of those public charter schools made it into the top 10: BASIS Scottsdale (#2), Gwinnett School of Mathematics, Science and Technology (#3) and BASIS Tucson North (#5).
Earlier this month, the House Committee on Education and the Workforce held a hearing, “Raising the Bar: The Role of Charter Schools in K-12 Education,” to highlight the growth of charter schools, their positive impact on K-12 education across the country, and the role of the federal Charter Schools Program. The hearing allowed members of the charter school community to showcase the ways federal policy can impact charter school growth, encourage best practices, and foster district-charter collaboration.
Posted in Federal Government
Right now, members of Congress are deciding how to spend money for the upcoming fiscal year and we need to make sure they know that public charter schools are a priority. That’s why we’re asking you to contact your members of Congress, tell them that the federal Charter Schools program is important to you. Need some motivation? Here are my top five reasons to support public charter schools in 2014:
Last week, more than 25 charter school leaders from across the country convened in Washington, D.C. for a day-long meeting to share best practices for growing sustainable charter support organizations, and to meet with their congressional delegations. The meetings, with more than 100 congressional offices, are a critical part of educating members of Congress and their staffs about the importance of the federal Charter Schools Program.