Meeting of the Board of Regents | March 2009
THE STATE EDUCATION DEPARTMENT / THE UNIVERSITY OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK / ALBANY, NY 12234
Charter Schools: Proposed Revisions to the Initial Charter for Future Leaders Institute Charter School
March 5, 2009
Goals 1 and 2
Issue for Decision
Should the Regents approve the staff’s recommendation concerning the proposed revisions to the initial charter for Future Leaders Institute Charter School (New York City)?
Reason(s) for Consideration
Required by State statute, Education Law §2852.
This question will come before the EMSC Committee in March 2009 for action. It will then come before the full Board for final action in March 2009.
The New York Charter Schools Act of 1998 requires the Board of Regents to review, in accordance with the standards set forth in Education Law §2852(2), proposed charters, renewal charters and revisions to charters and renewal charters that have been approved and submitted by other charter entities. The Board of Regents may either approve and issue a charter, renewal charter and/or revision as proposed by the charter entity, or return the same to the charter entity for reconsideration with written comments and recommendations.
The Board must act on a proposed revision submitted by the Chancellor of the city school district of the City of New York or other school district within 90 days of its submission or the proposed revision will be deemed to have been approved and issued by operation of law at the expiration of that period.
If the Board chooses to return the proposed revision to the Chancellor or school district, as the chartering entity, with comments and recommendations, the Chancellor or the school district must reconsider the proposed revision, taking into consideration the comments and recommendations of the Board. The Chancellor or the school district may resubmit the proposed revision to the Board without modification, resubmit the proposed revision with modifications agreed to by the applicant in writing, or abandon the proposed revision.
If the Chancellor or the school district resubmits a proposed revision to the Board, the Board may, within 90 days of resubmission, either approve or again return the proposed revision to the Chancellor or to the school district for modification. There is no limit to the number of times the Board can return a resubmitted proposed revision to the Chancellor or to a school district.
We received a request from the Chancellor of the city school district of the City of New York to revise the charter for Future Leaders Institute Charter School (FLI or “the School”). The School seeks to eliminate bridge classes, eliminate the plan for students to create daily reading logs, use interim assessments in lieu of student-created standards-based portfolios, replace 30 minutes of daily literacy with advisory in the middle school, increase parent membership in the Parent Teacher council from three parents to between three and nine parents, change the structure of the Weekly Report to narrative comments in lieu of overall scores, and reduce the school day by 10 minutes during the year and summer in order to comply with the current UFT contract. FLI also seeks to amend the bylaws with the following: add a provision that would allow the Board of Trustees to form ad-hoc committees; modify Board membership to include between five (5) and fifteen (15) trustees from the initial range of seven (7) to nine (9) trustees; and change the focus of the School’s mission from nurturing future leaders and attainment of FLI’s core values to general success in academics and life. These changes will allow the School to provide a program that is more closely in line with its philosophy and overall objectives.
The School is located in Community School District (CSD) 3, Manhattan. The New York City Department of Education held a public hearing in CSD 3 on Wednesday, February 4, 2009, regarding the proposed revision. No public comments were made or received.
The Board of Regents approved a revision to the School’s charter in July 2008 allowing the School to increase the annual enrollment target, modify the administration model, change the configuration of grade five to self-contained classrooms, and temporarily eliminate French language in grades 6-7 in lieu of an enrichment course.
VOTED: That the Board of Regents approves the revisions to the initial charter of the Future Leaders Institute Charter School as proposed by the Chancellor of the city school district of the City of New York, and the provisional charter is amended accordingly.
Reasons for Recommendation
The proposed revisions to the School’s initial charter, along with the other terms of the initial charter: (1) meet the requirements set out in Article 56 of the Education Law, and all other applicable laws, rules and regulations; (2) will permit the charter school to operate in an educationally and fiscally sound manner; and; (3) are likely to improve student learning and achievement and materially further the purposes set out in subdivision two of section twenty-eight hundred fifty of Article 56 of the Education Law.
Timetable for Implementation
The Regents action for Future Leaders Institute Charter School will be effective immediately.