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2002 Annual Conference - De-Briefing

The National Association of Charter School Authorizers held our Annual Conference, October 21-22, 2002 at La Mansión del Rio Hotel, San Antonio, Texas. 

The conference was a great success.  We are grateful for the efforts of more than sixty facilitators -- including authorizers, researchers, policy experts, U.S. Department of Education officials, and other education professionals -- who encouraged thoughtful reflection and participation in a wide variety of sessions related to charter schools in general and authorizers in particular.  Some of the overwhelmingly positive evaluative comments include:

'This was the best conference I have attended in thirty years in education.'

'This was truly one of – if not the most – enjoyable conferences I’ve ever been to.  Though I’m not an authorizer, the sessions were incredibly helpful to my work (in a [charter school] Resource Center).  The sessions’ speakers were excellent – engaging, organized and thoughtful.  Thanks for a stimulating conference.'     

'All very useful.  Panels were provocative; sessions were stimulating.'

'Our whole [state education agency] group was sort of wildly impressed with the high levels of conversation in most of the sessions.  I’m keeping the conference documents together as a model for any conferences I’m involved in planning.'

If you attended the conference but did not have a chance to complete an evaluation, you can print an evaluation form and mail or fax it to NACSA now.

Our complete Conference Program is available in pdf and includes the complete Conference Overview and Agenda with session descriptions and facilitators.  We have received many positive comments on the conference structure and substance.  If you attended the conference but have not yet submitted a Conference Evaluation, please print or download the form and do so now.  We are anxious to receive your input on what parts of the conference were most effective and how we can improve for next year.

Conference Sessions

In response to numerous requests, we are making available conference session materials that we have in electronic form.  These materials will include Powerpoint presentations, handouts, and materials generated in working group materials generated in workshop-style sessions.  We will add to the list of sessions and materials as we develop them.

Charter Renewal, Revocation & Closure: Policies and Practices. Draft, How are Charter Schools Being Held Accountable for Results?  (Hassel & Batdorff)

Creating Infrastructure for Charter Schools.  This session focused on ways that authorizers can support development of charter school infrastructure include using tools like these governance standards, and this overview of the Triple A Evaluation project for Missouri charter schools developed through the Learning Exchange (MO).

External Evaluation and Accreditation Models .  This session based discussion of the potential benefits and various options for external review of charter schools on four existing models.  Selecting any of the following organization names will take you to the organization's website where you can learn more about one of the models discussed: American Academy for Liberal Education ; Colorado League of Charter Schools; Schoolworks; Standard & Poor's.

Federal Policy Issues of Interest to Charter School Authorizers.  For relevant handouts from the Charter Friends National Network, go to

New Models of Charter School AuthorizingOhio HB 364 (T. Ryan); High School Consortium (Ferris State U.)

No Child Left Behind: What Does it Mean for Charter School Authorizers?  Presentation (New American Schools)

Opportunities and Responsibilities for Charter Schools Under the NCLB & Listening Session (U.S. Department of Education)

Overseeing the Overseer: Preparing for Accountability AuditsAOIS Reporting System (L. Brannan & J. Goenner)

State Legislative Issues Affecting Charter Schools and AuthorizersOhio Legislative Update (T. Ryan)

Student Performance Information Systems and Data Management (C. Skinner); Authorizer Information System Needs Assessment; Information System Evaluation Worksheet .

Working Successfully with Educational Service ProvidersScenarios for Discussion; Handout- Facilitating Effective Governance Relationships for Privately Managed Charter Schools.

Other useful resources related to working successfully with educational service providers include, NACSA's Resource Library of Authorizer Contract and Policy Tools for Working with ESPs (available to NACSA Members and Associate Members), NACSA's ESP Clearinghouse (available to NACSA Members and Associate Members), and the Charter Friends National Network's Charting a Clear Course: A Resource Guide for Building Successful Partnerships Between Charter Schools and School Management Organizations (Hassel & Lin)

Reception & Exhibitors Hour

NACSA welcomed a number of exhibitors to the conference, and we thank ABS School Services, Corporate Computer, Mosaica Education, and New American Schools  for sponsoring a lively Reception and Exhibitors Hour on Monday evening.



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