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January 2010

TO:

EMSC Committee

 

FROM:

John B. King, Jr.

SUBJECT:

Charter Schools: Proposed Charter for New World Preparatory Charter School

DATE:

January 5, 2010

STRATEGIC GOAL:

Goals 1 and 2

AUTHORIZATION(S):

 

SUMMARY

 

Issue for Decision

Should the Regents approve and issue the proposed charter for New World Preparatory Charter School (New York City)?

Background Information

We have received a proposed charter from the Trustees of the State University of New York (SUNY) for the establishment of New World Preparatory Charter School (NWPCS or “the School”).  The School will open in September 2010.  Initially, the School will serve 125 students in grade 6, and grow to serve 375 students in grades 6-8 in its fifth year of operation. The School's mission is “to provide an exceptional education for students in grades 6-8 by employing research-proven strategies to raise middle school academic achievement including: academic rigor and relevance, personalization, focused professional development, and meaningful engagement of families and the larger community.  We will build on our nation’s promise of opportunity by exemplifying the role social justice holds in shaping a community of the people, by the people and for the people.  Our students will graduate from NWPCS with a strong academic foundation, an awareness of the needs of others, and with the social and emotional readiness needed to succeed in middle school and high school and graduate from college.”    

The School has contracted with Victory Schools, Inc. as its management partner.  The School will provide instruction from 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. for 183 days per academic year.  The School’s educational program will focus on critical thinking, reading and writing across all content areas.

The New York City Department of Education held a public hearing in CSD 31 on August 3, 2009 regarding this proposed charter application.  No public comments were made or received.  

Additional information concerning this initial application may also be found on the Board of Regents website at http://www.regents.nysed.gov/.

Recommendation

VOTED: That the Board of Regents returns the proposed charter of the New World Preparatory Charter School to the Trustees of the State University of New York, and with the following comments and recommendations: (1) There is no evidence that the lead applicant has completed a state and federal criminal records check to the satisfaction of SUNY; (2) That the charter school provide evidence that the lead applicant is either a teacher, parent, school administrator or community resident; (3) That the charter school align its curriculum to the 28 New York State learning standards; (4) That the charter school amend its academic goals to align with the SUNY approved template, and to include goals pertaining to fiscal stability, legal compliance, student attendance, and parent/staff/student satisfaction; (5) That the charter school amend its budget to include a line for a dissolution escrow account for no less than $75,000; (6) That the charter school reduce its planned start-up deficit of $100,231; (7) That the charter school provide assurance that all special education teachers will be Highly Qualified; (8) That the charter school provide the description for request for evaluation to the Committee on Special Education of the student’s district of residence.

             

Timetable for Implementation

The Regents action for the New World Preparatory Charter School is effective immediately.

 

 

 

 

 

 

New York State Education Department

Summary of Proposed Charter

Name of Proposed Charter School:  New World Preparatory Charter School (NWPCS or “the School”)

Address:  One Teleport Drive, Staten Island, NY 10314

Applicant:  John Tobin

Anticipated Opening Date:  September 7, 2010

District of Location:  New York City Community School District (CSD) 31, Staten Island

Charter Entity:  Trustees of the State University of New York (SUNY)

Institutional Partner(s):  N/A

Management Partner:  Victory Schools, Inc.

Grades Served:                      2010-2011:  6

2011-2012:  6-7

2012-2013:  6-8

2013-2014:  6-8

2014-2015:  6-8

 

Projected Enrollment:         2010-2011:  125

2011-2012:  249

2012-2013:  374

2013-2014:  374

2014-2015:  375

 

Proposed Charter Highlights

Applicant

              John Tobin served for 32 years in the New York City public schools.  During that time, he served as teacher, dean, coach, assistant principal, high school principal, administrative superintendent, and executive assistant to three chancellors.  Other roles involving the intersection of education and employment have been with The National Research Council’s Forum of Educational Equity and Testing, and the Roundtable on Work and Learning.  Mr. Tobin is currently the CEO of 220 Victory Corporation, an administrative support services company.  Prior to this, he served as the executive vice president of the Siemens Foundation and the director of vocational and technology training at the Siemens Corporation.    

  Institutional Partner

N/A

Management Partner

Victory Schools, Inc. (VSI) is a for-profit management company which currently manages 17 schools, serving more than 6,500 students.  Of the 17 schools, eight are charter schools in New York State, one is a contract school in Chicago, two are charter schools in Chicago, one is a charter school in Philadelphia, and five are public district schools in Philadelphia.  Two new charter schools in New York, including NWPCS, are anticipated to open in September 2010.  VSI’s main role is to support and provide guidance to the principal and the School in attaining student achievement goals, and to ensure financial viability.  VSI will provide services that include charter application submissions, student recruitment and enrollment, materials selection and distribution, professional development, principal coaching, instructional and curriculum support, and operations and financial services.  Attachment 1 provides information on student performance on ELA and math State assessments by all charter schools in New York State managed by VSI. 

Curriculum/Assessment/Instruction

 

  • The key design elements of the School’s educational program will include: academic rigor and relevance, personalization, professional development, and engaging families and the larger community as critical partners. 
  • The School’s key design elements are targeted toward providing middle school students with the academic, social and emotional foundations to succeed in middle school, high school, college and beyond.
  • The School’s program will focus on critical thinking, reading and writing across all content areas.
  • As a tool for engaging students in an academic program that has relevancy to their concerns, NWPCS will infuse a framework of social justice into the core curriculum.
  • Technology will be an integral part of instruction.  Computers, internet, audio visual systems and interactive whiteboards will be used as instructional tools.
  • The School will not provide instruction in each subject in the seven general curriculum areas and the proposed curriculum is not aligned to all 28 New York State (NYS) learning standards.
  • The School’s academic goals do not align with the SUNY approved template, and do not include goals pertaining to fiscal stability, legal compliance, student attendance, and parent/staff/student satisfaction.
  • The School will provide 110 minutes of daily instruction in English language arts (ELA) to all students.
  • Students will receive 55 minutes per day of math instruction.
  • Teachers will use hands-on, project-based instructional strategies in the classroom.
  • NWPCS will offer students opportunities to explore the real world through field trips and extended experiences in the community that relate to classroom learning.
  • Each teacher will be assigned a group of 18 students to whom s/he will serve as an advisor over the course of the students’ three years at the School.
  • The School will use assessment data to inform teaching and to assign remedial help to underperformers.
  • In addition to all New York State exams, NWPCS will assess students through interim assessments developed by curriculum publishers.
  • The School will address the needs of students with disabilities (SWD) through an inclusion model of instruction. 
  • The School will directly provide a consultant teacher and/or a resource room setting for SWD in need of such services.
  • For SWD in need of related services, the School will contract with the student’s school district of residence or a private provider.
  • The School will employ a structured English language immersion strategy to help English language learners (ELL) achieve proficiency in the English language.
  • The School will provide instruction from 8:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. on Monday through Friday.  Students will be dismissed at 2:00 p.m. on every other Wednesday to allow for teacher professional development.
  • The School proposes a 183-day academic year from September to the end of June.

 

Governance

 

  • The number of trustees shall be no fewer than nine and shall not exceed 13. 
  • Trustees will be elected to serve five-year terms.  All trustees will be eligible for re-election.
  • Officers of the Board of Trustees will be: chairperson, secretary, and treasurer. 
  • Standing committees will include the following: executive, strategic, grievance, finance and fundraising, and academic and personnel committees.  The board may create additional ad hoc committees as necessary.
  • Trustees will have experience in public relations, human resources, finance, fundraising, legal, marketing, real estate and/or strategic planning.
  • Parents will be involved in school governance through membership in a Parent Teacher Organization (PTO), appointment of the PTO president to the Board of Trustees as a voting board member, and the creation of a subcommittee for School/Family Partnerships (SSFP).
  • The SSFP will have between six and 12 members comprised of parents, teachers, administrators, board members, students and community partners.  The SSFP will assess the quality of school/family relationships, develop an action plan to address needs, and monitor progress toward meeting those needs.
  • The Board of Trustees will meet, at a minimum, monthly during the school year.    
  • Trustees, officers or employees of any single organization shall hold no more than 40 percent of total seats comprising the board.

 

Students

 

  • The School will serve 125 students in grade 6 in the first year of instruction and will add one grade in each of the following two years.  NWPCS will grow to 375 students in grades 6 - 8 in the fifth year of the charter.
  • Each grade will be divided into five classes of 25 students each.
  • The student teacher ratio will be 25:1.
  • The School anticipates the ages of students will range between 10 - 13 years old.
  • The School’s recruitment strategy includes the following: mailings to families with school-age children; advertisements in local newspapers; open houses; recruitment fairs; distribution of information kits to local businesses, day care centers, social service agencies, and any other institution serving families with young children.
  • In its outreach efforts to families of ELL and SWD, the School will provide marketing material that highlights its commitment and services to this population, and staff will make visits to neighborhood feeder schools that serve higher numbers of such students.  Material will be in both English and native language, and translation services will be available to families in need.  
  • The School expects the student body to reflect the population of the target community: 45 percent Black, 37 percent Hispanic, 12 percent White, five percent Asian, 23 percent SWD, 12 percent ELL, and 75 percent eligible for free/reduced lunch.

 

Budget/Facilities

 

  • NWPCS will locate within an existing newly constructed building.  The building will be built out to the School’s specifications.
  • The address of the building is One Teleport Drive, Staten Island, NY.   The owner of the building is The Nicotra Group.
  • To accommodate the growing annual enrollment during the first three years of operation, the School will increase the leased space on a yearly basis from Year One to Year Three.
  • The School anticipates rental costs of $194,000 in Year One and $638,144 in Year Five.
  • The School anticipates a deficit of $100,231 for the start-up phase.
  • NWPCS anticipates Year One revenues to be $1,928,806 and expenses to be $1,797,349.
  • NWPCS anticipates Year Five revenues to be $5,185,432 and expenses to be $4,745,388.
  • NWPCS anticipates revenues of $105,000 from private funds in Year One.
  • The School did not include a budget line for a dissolution escrow account.   
  • The potential fiscal impact upon the District is represented below.  Please note that these projections are based upon several assumptions, which may or may not occur: that all existing charter schools will also exist in the next five years and serve the same grade levels as they do now; that the charter schools will be able to meet their projected maximum enrollment; that all students will come from NYC and no other districts; that all students will attend everyday for a 1.0 FTE; that the District’s budget will increase at the projected rate; that the per pupil payment will increase (and not decrease); and that the per pupil payment will increase at the projected rate.

 

Projected Fiscal Impact of

New World Preparatory Charter School

(New York City – CSD 31 – Staten Island)

2010-11 through 2014-15

School Year

Number of Students

Projected Payment*

Projected Impact

2010-2011

125

$ 1,602,000

0.0089%

2011-2012

249

$ 3,286,920

0.0177%

2012-2013

374

$ 5,085,089

0.0266%

2013-2014

374

$ 5,237,642

0.0266%

2014-2015

375

$ 5,409,195

0.0266%

*Assumes a three percent annual increase in the District’s budget from the base of $18.035 billion in 2010-2011; and a three percent annual increase in the average expense per pupil per year from the 2010-2011 rate of $12,816.

Personnel

 

  • The School will be led by a principal
  • An assistant principal will be hired in Year Three.
  • Instructional staff in Year One will include five classroom teachers, two specialty teachers, a part-time reading specialist, a part-time certified special education coordinator/teacher, a part-time Title I teacher, and a part-time certified English as a Second Language (ESL) teacher. 
  • Instructional staff in Year Five will include 15 classroom teachers, four specialty teachers, a part-time reading specialist, one special education coordinator, one special education teacher, a part-time Title I teacher, and two ESL teachers. 
  • In an effort to help teachers grow professionally, the School will provide the following: biweekly Wednesday early dismissal (2:00 p.m.) to allow for professional development (PD) opportunities, two weeks of PD in the summer, two full days of PD during the school year, coaching opportunities through VSI and the School’s instructional leader, and provision of tuition reimbursement to a allow a sample of the instructional staff to attend professional conferences.
  • The daily schedule will allow collaborative planning time for classroom and specialty teachers. 

 

Community Support

 

  • NWPCS provided signatures of interested families sufficient to fill the number of seats proposed for 2010 – 2011.
  • Letters of support for NWPCS were received from: Congressman Michael McMahon (13th District); State Senator Andrew Lanza (24th District); New York State Assemblymen Michael Cusick, Matthew Titone and Lou Tobacco, and; New York City Councilmen Kenneth Mitchell and Vincent Ignizio. 
  • A number of local organizations have offered their services to the students of NWPCS.  These include: Community Health Center of Richmond, El Centro del Inmigrante, Project Hospitality; Jewish Community Center of Staten Island, St. Philip’s Baptist Church and Staten Island Immigrants Council.  

 

Public Opinion

 

  • The New York City Department of Education sent a letter and posted a notice on its website, notifying the public and independent schools in CSD 31 of the proposed application for New Hope Academy Charter School and inviting comments for the public hearing. 
  • The New York City Department of Education held a public hearing in CSD 31 on August 3, 2009, concerning this application.  No public comments were made or received. 


ATTACHMENT 1

Performance of NYS Charter Schools Managed by Victory Schools, Inc.

on the ELA and Math State Assessments

Compared to the School District of Location

 

Percent of Students Scoring At or Above Level 3 on State Exams

Charter School

2006-2007

2007-2008

2008-2009

 

3-8

ELA

3-8

MATH

3-8

ELA

3-8

MATH

3-8

ELA

3-8

MATH

Sisulu-Walker Charter School

68.6

100

82.1

98.1

84.5

98

CSD 5

37.3

53.3

45.9

63.2

58.9

72

Bronx Global Learning Institute for Girls

NA

NA

NA

NA

NA

NA

NYC Charter HS for Arch, Engineering  & Construction

NA

NA

NA

NA

NA

NA

Peninsula Preparatory Academy

55.7

74.4

65.7

82.7

65.1

89.6

South Bronx Charter School for Int’l Cultures and the Arts

NA

NA

64.9

94.7

74.7

96

CSD 7

30.7

45.2

37.2

56.8

51.4

69.8

Merrick Academy

54

65.8

70.5

85.4

88.1

98.1

CSD 29

53.9

64.9

58.8

72.8

69.3

79.6

Charter School of Educational Excellence

45.2

52.3

56.8

77.7

86.8

95.7

Yonkers City School District

46.8

52.3

88

65.1

65.6

74.1

New Covenant

34.8

55.3

48.1

71.1

64.3

77.4

Albany City School District

43.8

48

49.1

58.1

60.7

67.2