The Ed-Watch series is designed to increase access to information on what decisions are being made regarding public education in Clark County and Nevada.
State Public Charter School Authority (SPCSA)
What is the SPCSA & what are they responsible for? Considered one of Nevada’s school districts, the SPCSA sponsors and oversees public charter schools. The Authority consists of seven appointed members responsible for overseeing educational and operational standards and holding sponsored schools accountable to the academic achievement of students.
How often does the SPCSA Board meet? The SPCSA typically meets once a month, generally on Fridays.
Click here for SPCSA meeting schedule and materials.
Can community members engage at SPCSA Board Meetings? While all meetings of the SPCSA are typically held publicly at the Nevada Department of Education building in Carson City and the Nevada Department of Education building in Las Vegas (1st floor boardroom), all meetings are now held virtually due to the COVID-19 crisis. Members of the public may view the meeting online via the link on the SPCSA’s Public Notice web page and the agenda and any supporting materials can be found here. Public comment may be given on any agenda item at the beginning of the meeting, or public comment regarding any matter that is SPCSA-related may be given at the conclusion of each Board meeting. Members of the community giving public comment can utilize the following conference call line: 1-312-584-2401; extension 3952176# with a time limit of three minutes per speaker. Alternatively, public comment may be submitted in writing to email@example.com, and any such public comment received prior to the meeting will be provided to the Authority and included in the written minutes of the meeting.
Friday, November 18, 2022
State Public Charter School Authority Board Meeting
Access the meeting agenda and playback.
What happened at this meeting?
Public Comment #1
Public comment was heard on:
- Concerns regarding Coral Academy
- Adding a school for SPCSA additional oversight
SPCSA Executive Director’s Report
Highlights from the report include:
- Initiatives Related to Serving All Students Equitably: Fourteen SPCSA-sponsored schools were required to submit recruitment and enrollment plans containing specific strategies aimed at serving students equitably, with a focus on students who qualify for free or reduced lunch. All applicable schools have submitted plans, which are summarized in a memo here.
- Legislative Session: Interim Committees & Planning: There are two main priorities in this section: working with the Governor’s office on the agency’s budget, and monitoring bill draft requests ahead of the legislative session, which begins in February.
- Pre-Opening Process for Schools Opening in 2023: The board was provided with an overview of this process today. A checklist and memo will be provided to each applicable school, and more deliberate deadlines have been added. Explore the memo and checklist.
Board Approved School Contract Amendment Applications
The Board approved Somerset Academy of Las Vegas’ articulation agreement granting 8th grade students enrolled at the school’s middle school campus on Stephanie St. to enroll at Pinecrest Academy’s Cadence high school campus.
The Board approved Pinecrest Academy of Nevada’s articulation agreement granting 8th grade students from Somerset Academy’s middle school campus to enroll at its Cadence high school campus. The Board also approved a modified lottery policy creating an enrollment preference for these students.
The Board approved Mater Academy’s request to provide bus transportation of students to and from its campus for extracurricular activities.
Board Reviewed 2021-2022 NSPF Results from the 2021-2022 School Year and Approved the Academic Performance Review and Recommendations
SPCSA staff provided an overview of how charter school performed on the Nevada School Performance Framework (NSPF) from the 2021-2022 school year. Almost 80% of SPCSA schools received a score of 50 or higher (3-star NSPF rating), outperforming the state. Proficiency rates increased for elementary and middle schools, but decreased for high school students.
Staff also provided an overview of the SPCSA Academic Performance Framework Ratings and how SPCSA schools are reviewed. Schools are reviewed on four indicators (NSPF index score, geographical comparison, enrollment diversity, and school progress), with metrics under each indicator. From there, a points system determines a rating of exceeds standard meets standard, does not meet standard, or below standard. On the SPCSAS Academic Performance Framework, 83% of SPCSA schools received a Met or Exceeds Standard rating.
Eight schools were approved to have prior notices for academic performance removed, and 13 schools were approved for additional oversight and monitoring for the 2022-2023 school year.
Board Received a New Schools Update
Board members received an update on Eagle Charter School, which was approved in January 2021 and is scheduled to open for the 2023-2024 school year. A facility has been identified at 2025 E. Sahara Ave., and construction and other key partners for facility development have been identified. A COO has been hired, and the school has final interviews for a principal scheduled in early December. Community engagement for recruitment is also underway, with an open enrollment scheduled from December 1 – February 1, and priorities of 1:1 and bilingual outreach, and frequent follow-ups to interested families.
Explore the presentation.
Board Conditionally Approved Rooted School’s Application
Rooted School – Clark County resubmitted its application for consideration, with a proposed opening of August 2023. This school’s mission is to rapidly reduce America’s wealth gap by connecting underserved and talented teenagers with career and financial pathways.
The Board approved Rooted School’s application with conditions and deadlines, including providing revised lottery policies, providing a fully executed lease for a facility, hiring a principal, and ensuring career and technical education courses comply with NDE requirements.
Board Approved the Charter Application and Rubric for 2023 Applications
Staff provided a review of the SPCSA’s authority and requirements for application review and approval, and presented several proposed changes to the application and rubric, after feedback from the board, past applicants, community partners, and a working group.
Major revisions include reformatting the application, revamping the training approach and providing additional trainings, publishing the timeline, clarifying submission expectations, incorporating constituent feedback, adding language to prioritize diversity, equity, and inclusion, and reorganizing sections of the application.
Board Approved the 2023 Academic and Demographic Needs Assessment
Staff presented the updated 2023 Academic and Demographic Needs Assessment. Updates include the temporary use of index scores in place of star ratings, academic needs based on geographies with a 1- and 2-star rating, and a detailed breakdown of 1- and 2-star schools by school district.
Board Received an Update on 2022-2023 School Year Demographics
Staff presented the 2022-2023 enrollment data. SPCSA is the third largest Local Education Agency in Nevada (behind Clark County and Washoe County School Districts), with 59,670 students for the 2022-2023 school year. This represents a 7.6% increase over 2021-22 enrollment numbers. Over 40% of SPCSA students are enrolled at Title I schools. Enrollment rates have increased for students identifying as Asian, Black/African American, Hispanic/Latino, or Two or More Races, as well as economically disadvantaged students and students with disabilities. Further metrics on different student groups within Clark County, Washoe County, and statewide were also presented.
Board Received an Overview of the SPCSA’s Organizational Performance Framework
Staff presented an overview of the SPCSA’s Organizational Performance Framework. The performance framework measures the success, financial viability, and effectiveness of the school/organization. Principles of the Organizational Performance Framework include defining organizational benchmarks, treating schools the same, enabling school flexibility and autonomy, protecting public interest, and ensuring schools respect the rights of students, staff, families, and public.
Explore the presentation.
Long-Range Calendar (next 3 months):
Agenda items over the next three SPCSA board meetings are anticipated to include:
- Graduation data
- Organizational performance framework results
- State of the SPCSA
- New schools update
Explore the calendar.
Public Comment #2
Public comment was heard on:
- Concerns regarding Nevada State High School
- Potential additional student enrollment at Discovery Charter School
The next Meeting of the SPCSA Board is scheduled for Friday, December 16, 2022 @ 9:00 a.m.