Charter Schools Weekly Newsletter (Includes Action Items)

Having trouble viewing this email? View it as a Web page.

Office of Charter Schools

6303 Mail Service Center, Raleigh, NC 27699-6303  •  919.807.3491

WEEKLY NEWSLETTER  –  February 16, 2018

Upcoming Events


February 28 - March 1, 2018

State Board of Education Meeting 


March 5, 2018

Charter Schools Advisory Board Meeting

Action Items Due 


February 12 - 16

Bus Driver Appreciation

Action Items Due Next Week


February 22, 2018

Reading Camp Webinar

Future Action Items  



February 27 - 28, 2018

March 1 - 2, 2018

CPI Training Opportunity


March 5 - 8, 2018

EC Institute


March 9, 2018

SECU Scholarship Information Due to OCS

March 15, 2018

Family & Community Engagement Workshop

March 16, 2018

SLD within MTSS Webinar


April 3, 2018

EC Directors' Webinar - 10:00 - 11:00 am


April 23, 2018

DLI Grant Due


June 5, 2018

EC Directors' Webinar - 10:00 - 11:00 am


August 7, 2018

EC Directors' Webinar - 10:00 - 11:00 am


October 2, 2018

EC Directors' Webinar - 10:00 - 11:00 am


December 4, 2018

EC Directors' Webinar - 10:00 - 11:00 am

pencil rocket

NCDPI Office of Charter Schools (OCS) Updates



From the Desk of Mr. Dave Machado, Director, Office of Charter Schools




This week’s tragic shooting at a school in Florida reinforces our school community’s vulnerability and the need to reassess our school safety procedures. Our office is constantly being asked by media and stakeholders about charter school legal responsibilities and what charter schools are doing to ensure the 100,000 students attending charter schools are safe. Below is the legislation detailing this……


Legislation about lockdown drills passed the General Assembly back in the 2015 Session. It is an annual requirement for district schools and an annual recommendation for charters. Charter language is at NCGS 115C-218.75(b):


(b)        School Risk Management Plan. - Each charter school, in coordination with local law enforcement and emergency management agencies, is encouraged to adopt a School Risk Management Plan (SRMP) relating to incidents of school violence. In constructing and maintaining these plans, charter schools may utilize the School Risk and Response Management System (SRRMS) established pursuant to G.S. 115C-105.49A. These plans are not considered a public record as the term "public record" is defined under G.S. 132-1 and shall not be subject to inspection and examination under G.S. 132-6.


Charter schools are encouraged to provide schematic diagrams and keys to the main entrance of school facilities to local law enforcement agencies, in addition to implementing the provisions in G.S. 115C-105.52.


I strongly encourage all our schools to reassess your lockdown procedures, conduct monthly drills, and work with your local law enforcement agencies to make sure your school community is safe and as prepared as possible. As always, thank you for all you do to educate your students in a safe environment.

Class Size Legislation and Charter Schools



Charter schools are not bound to the class size mandates in current legislation. The charter school's approved charter application operationalized in the nonprofit board of directors' policy dictates the class size at the charter school. 


Since charters are not required to follow the class size mandates they also do not have to run PowerSchool class size reports.


Charter schools with specific class size numbers in the approved application may request an amendment through OCS if there changes to the class sizes at the charter school. Please contact OCS via email at with questions or concerns about class sizes in charter schools. 

State Employees Credit Union Foundation (SECU) High School Scholarship Opportunity - Reminder


Since the SECU Foundation was established in August 2004, it has awarded annual $10,000 “People Helping People” four-year scholarships – increasing from two to three in 2014 – to graduating seniors attending North Carolina Charter Schools. These scholarships will be awarded to students attending one of the 16 constituent campuses of the University of North Carolina. These funds are made possible through the contributions to the Foundation by members of State Employees' Credit Union.


Below are the steps for applying for this scholarship opportunity:




 - Review the ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA and share scholarship information with eligible students and their parents. New for 2018: The SECU People Helping People Scholarship is only available to graduating public high school seniors who are either members of SECU or the child of a parent/guardian who is a member of SECU.


 - Develop a school-level scholarship selection committee comprised of three or more members who will make the final decision on the school-level nominee. The scholarship selection committee must also identify an alternate (runner up) for each school-level nominee in the event the named nominee becomes ineligible (i.e., receives a full scholarship, declines the scholarship, chooses to attend a private or out of state university, etc.).


 - Submit the following information for the school-level nominee:



  • Completed Student Application and Essay. Note: This document must be sent as a Word Document only. The document is enabled to allow SECU Foundation to import student data into our database directly. Please do not send this document as a PDF or Google Doc.
  • Copy of University Acceptance Letter
  • Photo of Nominee (head shot only)
  • A Brief Bio Written by Nominee with Accomplishments and Awards Noted. A guide for writing them bio is provided HERE.
  • Written Scholarship Selection Committee Statement (signed by all committee members verifying the selection of the nominee). In this letter, include the name of the selected school-level alternate nominee.
  • Signed Consent Form. Each recipient of the scholarship and their parent/guardian must sign the Consent Form to release their names and images for press releases to the local news media as well as within State Employee’s Credit Union and the SECU Foundation. In addition, the nominee and their parents are asked to complete all the information on the Consent Form which will be used to verify their eligibility as an SECU member.
  • Scholarship recipient information from each school must be received by the NCDPI Office of Charter Schools by 5:00 pm EST on March 9, 2018. Application information must be sent via email to Dr. Deanna Townsend-Smith at Schools should only submit application information for the school-level nominee. Application information should be collected for the alternate nominee, but the information should not be submitted until requested.



 - Schools should notify the Office of Charter Schools if the school-level nominee or alternate are no longer eligible for the scholarship.


The Office of Charter Schools appreciates the dedication and hard work by the members of each school’s Scholarship Selection Committee. Please contact Dr. Deanna Townsend-Smith @ if you have any questions or concerns about the scholarship opportunity.



SECU Foundation also provides each North Carolina Community College two (2) $5,000 scholarships. Recipients are selected by the Scholarship Selection Committee at the community college. If you have a student who will be attending a community college and exemplifies the membership philosophy of credit unions, “People Helping People”, please direct them to the Financial Aid office at the community college.

NC Department of Public Instruction (NCDPI) Updates


North Carolina Textbook Commission Meeting

The North Carolina Textbook Commission will meet Monday, Feb. 19, from 10 a.m to 2 p.m. for initial planning for 2018. The meeting will be held in the State Board meeting room on the 7th floor in the Education Building, 301 N. Wilmington Street, Raleigh, N.C.

The Textbook Commission will review the process and procedures for textbook evaluation and adoption. The Textbook Commission meeting will be audio streamed for those who cannot attend. Questions regarding this meeting should be directed to the NCDPI Communications division at 919-807-3450.

Multi-Tiered System of Support

Multi-Tiered System of Support (MTSS) Updates


Over 100 Cohort 5 charter schools are currently accessing the Multi-Tiered System of Support (MTSS) School-Based Modules. The first of these modules begins by establishing understanding of the components and changes necessary to establish a Multi-Tiered System of Support (MTSS). Simultaneously, members of the Division of Integrated Academic and Behavior Systems continues to work collaboratively across the state to ensure a common understanding of an MTSS as a total school improvement framework, NOT a process for struggling students.  Whether in an MTSS Cohort, or not, it is imperative each staff member has an understanding of this concept for the establishment of a sustainable MTSS in your school. 

Please review and share the latest MTSS Communication Brief made available to help convey this message.

Details for how to join Cohort 5, can be found here. If you have other questions about MTSS please contact us at

Specific Learning Disabled (SLD) in Mathematics Capacity Building Application

Please see the attached professional development opportunity for certified and employed Foundations of Math instructors.

If you have any questions, please contact Lynne Loeser ( / 919 807-3980) or Teri Queen ( / 828 803-1488).





NC Professional Development

2018 March Institute

Please see the attached information regarding the 2018 March Institute, March 5-8, 2018 in Greensboro.  Registration deadline is February 16, 2018.

Registration questions should be directed to Melinda Tomlinson ( / 919 807-3925).  March Institute questions should be directed to Sherry Thomas ( / 919 807-3992).




Specific Learning Disabled (SLD) within an Multi-Tiered System of Support (MTSS) Webinar - March 16th

Please see the attached information for a March 16 webinar regarding LEA readiness for beginning engagement with Specially Designed Instruction (SDI) within a Multi-Tiered System of Support (MTSS).

If you have any questions, please contact Lynne Loeser ( or Lauren Holahan (


Attachment:     Memo-SDI+within+an+MTSS+Webinar.pdf

NC Professional Development

Driver Education Advisory Committee Meets Feb. 20

The Driver Education Advisory Committee will meet Tuesday, Feb. 20, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.via video conference for its quarterly meeting. The committee will discuss proposed changes to the state's driver education policy.

The meeting can be accessed from computer, tablet or smartphone: 

Access by phone:
United States: +1 (571) 317-3122 

Access Code: 281-468-773 

First GoToMeeting? Let's do a quick system check:

Summer Reading Camp

Please see the attached clarification on Summer Reading Camp.

If you have any questions, please contact Bill Hussey ( or Sherry Thomas (



Attachment:     Memo-Summer+Reading+Camp.pdf

NC Professional Development

Federal Programs/Support and Educator Support Services - Free Professional Development (PD) Opportunity




The divisions of Federal Program Monitoring & Support and Educator Support Services will be joining forces for a Family & Community Engagement workshop on Thursday, March 15th at the Koury Convention Center in Greensboro from 8:45 am – 11:45 am


There is no charge for this opportunity and you can register at the link below. This is separate from the Connecting Communities of Education Stakeholders Conference and will require separate registration. 


Please forward the registration link to anyone you know that could benefit from this professional development. Presenters will be Alessandro Montanari & Dr. Susan Silver.


Register Here for Family & Community Engagement :

Non-Violent Crisis Intervention (CPI) Train-the-Trainer Opportunity - Reminder


Please see below important information on a CPI Train-the-Trainer Opportunity.


When:     February 27th, 28th and March 1st, 2nd


Location:     Herbin Metz Education Center - 400 Oferrell St. Greensboro, NC


Please contact Joe Simmons with questions about this opportunity at


Mark Johnson

School Safety Message from Superintendent Mark Johnson




As a society, we must find long-term solutions. As school leaders, we must continue to take the actions we have in our power to prevent such tragedies in our schools.




More will follow from my office as we enter the upcoming legislative session, but here is a reminder list of actions you can reemphasize at your schools today:






  • The small procedures add up. Strictly follow the entrance and visitor check-in processes. Make sure doors are never propped open and that students/staff do not open doors at-will for others.
  • Encourage students to report odd behavior and odd social media trends. Students should tell someone immediately and know there are no consequences for being concerned.
  • Don’t think it can’t happen in your town or at your school. We have seen that these tragedies can happen anywhere. Remain vigilant.
  • Your SROs are trained first as law enforcement officers. Work with them, allowing their training and instincts to define their daily schedule, interactions, and priorities.
  • Schedule a lockdown drill. District schools are required to hold a lockdown drill at least once a year. I know many schools are drilling more often than that, but if you have not had one in a while, please schedule one soon.

Here are more steps to take in the weeks ahead:





  • Mental Health First Aid training: Please see the flyer linked below for information about MHFA training and resources.
  • Critical Incident Response training for faculty and staff: Training manuals and presentations are available here. The Center for Safer Schools can also schedule trainings for districts or schools as available. Email Mike Anderson for more information.
  • Online PD for educators: Training is available on the following topics here.

o    Understanding Student Behavior in the Classroom (6th – 12th grade)

o    Understanding Young Student Behavior in the Classroom (PreK-5th grade)

o    Understanding the Role of School Resource Officers in Schools

o    Understanding the Schools’ Role in Suicide Prevention

o    Preventing Substance Abuse and Underage Drinking Among K-12 Students




I know you care deeply about your students’ safety and mental health. Thank you for all that you do, and while we remain bewildered and shocked by these kinds of events, let us work together to prevent more.

Lowering of United States and North Carolina Flags in Honor of the Victims of the Attack in Parkland, Florida


Governor Roy Cooper has joined President Donald Trump in ordering all United States and North Carolina flags at state facilities to be lowered to half-staff from Feb. 15 until sunset on Feb. 19 in honor of the victims of the school shooting in Parkland, Florida. 

Don't Miss This

NCDPI Newsletters


Arts Access News


Superintendents' Weekly Message: Feb. 13


February 2018 From the Board Room


Weekly Legislative Update - Friday, February 9, 2018


February 2018 NC Public School Partners' Newsletter

Charter schools in the News


Gray Stone Day Ribbon Cutting