OCS Weekly Newsletter for July 17, 2020

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6307 Mail Service Center, Raleigh, NC 27699-6307  

Weekly Newsletter- July 17, 2020


Click the links!

Thank you for updating Epicenter!!!


OCS Guidance for Charter Schools SB681/Session Law 2020-78 Enrollment Priorities, Assessments Memo, and CARES Act additional funds available 7/17/2020 


FYI: Please email us your questions!


We are working remotely, and cannot always access voicemail.



  • In response to Governor Cooper’s 3:00 p.m. press conference, NCDHHS released new requirements and guidance that directly impacts public schools.  Please find their complete communication and document links in italics below.
  • The Lighting Our Way Forward: Guidebook will be updated to reflect the new DHHS requirements. NCDPI staff have just received these new requirements and will review and begin the revision process. You will be notified of these updates in a separate “heads-up” email as they become available.  


NCHHS Communication-7.14.20

Dear Partners,


Thank you for your ongoing partnership as we all do our part to minimize exposure and risk of COVID-19, especially as we work to ensure continued in-person education opportunities for North Carolina’s children.


Today Governor Cooper issued a joint statement with the NC Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS), the NC State Board of Education (NCSBE) and the NC Department of Public Instruction (NCDPI), announcing that after months of careful work, the state is moving forward with implementing Plan B for reopening schools.


The requirements under Plan B have been updated, and are outlined in detail in the newest version of the StrongSchoolsNC Public Health Toolkit (K-12). All schools will start the year operating under Plan B health and safety requirements. However, schools will have flexibility in how they choose to implement the requirements to meet their needs, and it is expected that all schools will also offer full-time virtual instruction for higher-risk students, teachers and families opting into remote learning for themselves and their children.


Key updates to the StrongSchoolsNC Public Health Toolkit (K-12):

  • Plan B social distancing and density requirements now offer more flexibility for districts to limit the number of people inside school buildings to the extent needed to meet 6 feet social distancing requirements
  • Cloth face coverings are required for all students from Kindergarten through 12th Grade in school and on buses, and for all teachers, school staff, and adult visitors
  • How teachers and staff should interact with each other in the safest ways possible
  • Recommendations provided for physical education, music, and band
  • Remote learning options must be provided for students who are at high-risk for severe disease due to COVID-19, or whose family members are at high-risk


Other important updates:

  • Along with the toolkit, NCDHHS is releasing updated screening guide with detailed and easy-to-follow protocols for the next steps schools should take if a student, teacher, staff member, or adult visitor presents with COVID-19 symptoms, or who discloses exposure to COVID-19, or who shares they tested positive.
  • In addition to the two-month supply of PPE materials already sent out to every public school across the state and detailed in the updated Infection Control and PPE guidance, Governor Cooper announced the shipment of five cloth face coverings for every elementary, middle, and high school student across NC, and for every teacher and school staff member.


We know that this will be a learning process for all of us - students, teachers, families, school administrators, and public officials. We will stay flexible as we monitor the spread of COVID-19 in our state, review new evidence and guidance, and seek feedback from families, students, teachers and staff, and local communities.


Thank you for your partnership.



Click here to see the updated StrongSchoolsNC Public Health Toolkit (K-12)


Click here to view all public health guidance documents for K – 12 schools 


Download the social media toolkit (English | Spanish) including images and language for social media posts. Help share this important information with students and their families across North Carolina!


Please refer to the Frequently Asked Questions document (English | Spanish) for additional support.

"Lighting the Way Forward" FAQs





Please see the following update on behalf of Sherry Thomas, Director of the Exceptional Children Division:


Due to 2020-2021 Indirect Costs for Charter schools not being available at this time, the IDEA Grant submission will be extended until July 24th for “Charter Schools only”.

We apologize for the inconvenience.


Thank you,


Amanda W. Byrd



State Legislative Update:




To help recap important news of the week, we are pleased to bring you the NCDPI COVID-19 WEEKLY TOP TEN.


School Financial Reporting:




Communications Team:

Please note-    Our biweekly Tuesday calls will continue to be held at 8:00 a.m. and recordings will be provided in a follow-up email if you are unable to attend.  We welcome all communications leaders and superintendents to join our biweekly calls. Our biweekly calls occur in the off week of the standing superintendent and charter leaders calls by design, to keep an open channel between NCDPI and the field open each week. 


Dates for our upcoming call is: July 28. 




Charter leaders, please take a look at the timeline and requirements for the Second Annual NCCAT Beginning Teacher of the Year Award! Recognize your amazing beginning charter leaders. All the details are right here!


Second Annual NCCAT BTOY Award



The NCCAT Beginning Teacher of the Year  timeline has changed due to these unprecedented times. Please find a link here to the new timeline. https://drive.google.com/file/d/19cGanTnK5KwiXlKe2BNp2mgtn7Eb5Xgr/view


Click for latest DHHS Guidance

Upcoming Events and Reminders!

Save the Date!


OCS Huddle West 

July 28th, 2020

OCS 2020 Summer Huddle West Registration


Virtual Huddle Registration Closes July 20

VIRTUAL 2020 OCS Summer Huddle

Charter School Leadership Institute 2020

Charter School Leadership Institute 2020 will be postponed until Spring 2021.



Office of Charter Schools (OCS) Updates




Performance Framework

NOTE: All Epicenter submissions must be submitted by July 31st. Please check your task queue and carefully follow the guidance returned on any items due. Make any and all corrections that are necessary and resubmit evidence by July 31st in order to be deemed compliant with applicable State Statute, SBE Policy, and the Charter Agreement. Thank you to all who have turned everything in correctly!
99% of Charter schools met operational expectations last year. Let's make it 100%!

Professional Learning & Renewals Newsletters

OCS Huddle West Interest Survey

Did You Know?

Charter Schoolhouse
Online Resources from Finance & School Business Division
Topics with links to our most recent information:
Federal CARES Act
Funding and Allocations
PRC154 COVID-19 Supplemental Funds - State
Emergency Leave

DPI Logo

NCDPI Updates

Attendance Reporting in PowerSchool:

Urgent High Priority Triangle


Leadership Opportunities:

CSUSA Human Resources Generalist

CSUSA School Enrollment Systems Specialist

Lake Lure Executive Director Job Posting

Thomas Jefferson Classical Academy Leadership Opportunity

Socrates Academy Elementary school teachers, middle school ELA teachers, and middle school band teacher.

The Experiential School of Greensboro: 5/6th grade Teacher, 7/8th grade Teacher, EC Teacher, Part-time Social Worker

Whom Should I Contact at the Office of Charter Schools?

Please note that response times to voicemails left on our phones will be much slower than usual due to the COVID-19 response efforts. Sending us an email is ideal.  Clicking the link on our names will bring up an automatic email prompt. Thank you!

OCS Main number: 984 236 2700 ocs@dpi.nc.gov

Dave Machado         984 236 2702

Director of the Office of Charter Schools


Georgia Maimone       984 236 2701; Please use email: Georgia.maimone@dpi.nc.gov

Program Administrative Assistance, Communications


Shaunda Cooper      984 236 2707

Consultant, Renewals & Performance Framework


Claire Porter              984 236 2709

Consultant, Professional Learning & Ready to Open Process


Ashley Baquero         984 236 2708

Consultant, Amendments & Compliance


Joseph Letterio       984 236 2703

Consultant, Epicenter Tech Support & Performance Framework


Darian Jones           984 236 2705

Consultant, Applications & Renewals


Jay Whalen              984 236 2711

Program Administrator, NC ACCESS Program


Barbara O'Neal        984 236 2706

Program Coordinator, NC ACCESS Program