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Publications For Members

March 8, 2002

School Accountability; Charter Authorizers’ Practices

Charter School Accountability: A Guide to Issues and Options for Charter Authorizers, by Bryan Hassel and Paul Herdman (Annie E. Casey Foundation, 2000) – Discusses critical questions charter authorizers face in designing results-focused school accountability systems, and offers a comparative review of accountability approaches followed by various chartering agencies around the country. A primer for authorizers seeking valuable perspectives and frameworks for addressing the challenge of creating thoughtful, streamlined accountability systems focused on school and student performance.

Charter School Accountability Action Guide, by Jennifer Nahas and Roblyn Brigham (Massachusetts Charter School Resource Center, 2000) – Provides school developers and leaders a highly practical, six-step “recipe” to creating a school-wide academic accountability system, from creating a school culture that embraces accountability to selecting appropriate measurement tools and using data effectively. This action guide demystifies the work of infusing academic accountability throughout a school’s daily life and endeavors.

Measuring Up: How Chicago’s Charter Schools Make Their Missions Count, by Margaret Lin (Leadership for Quality Education, 2000) – Provides lessons, reflections and practical tools from four charter schools that have created valid, reliable and externally credible measures of student growth beyond standardized testing for their accountability agreements with the Chicago school board. While these schools tackled the challenge of measuring student achievement in oral expression; narrative writing; and social, personal and character development, the tools and step-by-step process frameworks included in Measuring Up should be useful to schools and authorizers striving to measure achievement in any number of areas.

Special Education

Charter Schools and the Education of Students with Disabilities, by Elizabeth Giovannetti, Eileen Ahearn, and Cheryl Lange (Charter Friends National Network, 2nd edition, 2001) – Offers charter school developers and operators a clear and concise explanation of current federal special education laws and requirements. The guide also uses a series of questions and responses to address a number of practical challenges that charter school operators may face in achieving their unique educational mission and goals while meeting their legal obligations as public schools committed to serving all students.

Comprehensive Educational Service Providers

Charting a Clear Course: A Resource Guide for Building Successful Partnerships between Charter Schools and School Management Organizations, by Margaret Lin and Bryan Hassel (Charter Friends National Network, 2nd edition, 2001) – A resource for charter school governing boards seeking to contract for comprehensive school management or substantial educational services, offering assistance in selecting a service provider, negotiating a performance-based contract, and managing a service contract effectively. The information and perspectives in this resource guide may also be useful for charter school authorizers overseeing such contracts, as well as educational agencies contracting directly for school management services. Includes a checklist of important issues to address in education management contracts.

Guidelines for Ensuring the Quality of a National Design-Based Assistance Provider, by a blue-ribbon panel of educational and business leaders (New American Schools, 2000) – Offers schools a tool kit and framework for effectively selecting and implementing comprehensive school reform designs.

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In addition to these publications available directly from NACSA, authorizers may wish to order the following resource from the Charter Schools Development Center:

The Charter-Granting Agencies' Tool Kit (National Edition), by Laurie Gardner (Charter Schools Development Center, 2000) – A carefully selected compendium of resources, tools and illustrative documents for charter authorizers covering all aspects of granting and overseeing charters, from application review to renewal decision-making. Culled from hundreds of documents from chartering agencies nationwide, the Tool Kit is a unique resource for charter authorizers in any state, whether they are new to the chartering challenge or experienced authorizers seeking to refine their practices. Order form available at www.cacharterschools.org.

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