OCS Weekly Newsletter for May 14, 2021

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Weekly Newsletter- May 14, 2021

Graduation Requirements – Keep these up to date!

OCS recommends that each charter school serving high school grades levels review the state graduation requirements each year and make sure all school requirements are aligned. State graduation requirements are changed periodically as a result of statutory or SBE policy changes. Graduation requirements are based on the entrance year of students into 9th grade.


You can find the state requirements here. Our office recommends two years of foreign language as the University of North Carolina schools require two years of a foreign language during high school for admission. We also recommend mirroring your course names exactly as listed in the graduation requirements so there is no confusion. All schools are required to offer the Occupational Course of Study diploma.

Please be sure to keep EDDIE up to date!


Upcoming Events and Reminders!

Save the Date!


Pursuant to SL2021-7 (HB82) and SBE approval, each Charter School is encouraged to submit a School Extension Learning Recovery and Enrichment Program Plan. You will use a Qualtrics survey to facilitate the submission of your 2020–2021 plan. 

This survey is now open for submissions.

Please click here for the program submission survey.


  • Submit ONE survey per PSU.
  • You may leave and return to the survey at any time before the final submission of the plan.  However, you cannot edit survey responses once you press submit.
  • If you accidently press submit before you were ready, email lynne.barbour@dpi.nc.gov and ask for your submission to be reopened.
  • Once in Qualtrics look for the blue buttons in the bottom right to navigate through the survey.
  • After you submit the plan through Qualtrics, NCDPI and the Office of Charter Schools will review your plan.

Supporting documents can on be found on our Office of Learning Recovery & Acceleration webpage, here.

The Office of Learning Recovery

OCS OFFICE HOURS Will Return Monday, May 17th at 11:30 a.m.

Join Us for Office Hours on Monday, May 17th at 11:30 a.m. with Special Guests from the Homebase Team to discuss PowerSchool and End of Year Processing. Don’t miss it!

Here is the NEW OCS Office Hours LINKhttps://ncgov.webex.com/webappng/sites/ncgov/meeting/download/184509c605b64005a0671c573f999fe7?siteurl=ncgov&MTID=m63130db7d3357c89a7332d38b6921c79

Homeless Data Collection Submission Workshops Offered

Deadline Approaching - May 27th:  Homeless Education Self-Assessment End-of-Year Survey
The NC Homeless Education Program (NCHE) would like to remind all charter school homeless liaisons that the Charter School Self-Assessment End-of-Year Survey submission deadline is Thursday, May 27th. 
  • If you have already submitted your end-of-year survey, thank you!  If you still need to complete the survey, you may access the survey here.
  • The survey:


    • Is designed to be completed within 45 minutes.
    • Does not allow for saving entries and later returning to the survey to continue.
    • May be printed as a PDF prior to completion as a "preview" and may also be printed just prior to submission to serve as a reference for any needed follow-up actions.  
      • Use the image.png icon in the top right corner of your screen to save the files as a PDF and then print.
  • Questions should be directed to Patricia Lentz, Program Specialist for Charter Schools.  

Charter schools will be able to submit homeless data prior to the last school day during the 2020-2021SY.  Optional, virtual homeless data collection submission workshops will be offered by NCHEP during May and June to support homeless liaisons in charter schools with their submission of homeless data in PowerSchool. 

  • Workshops are not required but are offered as a support to any homeless liaison wishing to participate.
  • No registration is required to participate; simply join the session during the stated time using one of the links provided below.
  • Once the liaison successfully submits data he/she may leave the session.
  • Questions about the workshops should be directed to Patricia Lentz, NCHEP Program Specialist for Charter Schools.

Virtual Data Submission Workshops

June 2, 2021 – Wednesday

1:30 PM – 2:30 PM

Submit a “0” Student Count

Join Workshop Here

June 3, 2021 – Thursday

10:00 AM – 11:00 AM

Submit a Student Count

(Counts > “0”)

Join Workshop Here


English Language Learners

The 2020-2021 ACCESS for ELLs data validation window for Public School Units (PSUs) opens May 18th and closes June 1st. Data validation is the time after testing and before reporting when PSUs can review student data in WIDA AMS. Please open and save the Data Validation Information Guide for:

  • A link to a prerecorded presentation on steps for completing data validation (password is Datavalidation2021)
  • A link for Q&A sessions that will be held May 4th (2:30 - 3:30 pm) and May 7th (8:30 - 9:30 am) to ask any questions that may come up after viewing the recorded webinar
  • A link to the slides used in the presentation with tips for successful data validation
  • A link to Office hours that will be held Monday-Friday from 8:30 am - 9:30 am during the week of May 24th - 28th

Please email Susan Walz for any additional information.

NC Ed Corps

NC Education Corps recruits, trains and deploys corps members who are hired by North Carolina public schools to help accelerate learning recovery. Moving into the 2021-2022 school year, Education Corps members will work as high-impact literacy tutors in elementary schools, helping K-3 students build phonemic awareness and phonics skills.


PSUs can apply to partner with NCEC for the 2021-2022 school year through www.nceducationcorps.org by May 20, 2021. PSUs are encouraged to contact the NC Education Corps team as soon as possible to discuss partnership details prior to submitting an application.


For more information, contact John-Paul Smith, Executive Director, at john-paul.smith@nceducationcorps.org or Pam Hartley, Director of School Partnerships, at pam.hartley@nceducationcorps.org


Partner with North Carolina Education Corps to Accelerate K-3 Literacy Recovery--applications due May 20

Since launching in September 2020, NC Education Corps (NCEC) has partnered with 20 North Carolina public school units to recruit, train, and support over 200 corps members who are supporting students and school personnel as tutors, mentors, and contact tracers.

Charter School Nursing Services Survey


Please take a moment to complete this brief survey on school nursing services in charter schools. The questions are normally a component of annual compliance reporting done by charter schools each May, which is waived this year due to challenges that were created by the COVID-19 pandemic during the 2020-2021 school year. Your responses are helpful to the Office of Charter Schools in supporting the need for nursing services.


Please complete one survey per school no later than May 28, 2021. Questions can be directed to Annette.Richardson@dhhs.nc.gov or 252-339-3009.



New Charter School Leaders VIRTUAL Institute 2021

June 8th & 9th, 2021
Cohort 2021 new charter leaders (heads of school) are required to attend this two-day VIRTUAL institute. Please register at the link here.  BOD members are also welcome and encouraged to attend.

Weekly Top Ten-May 6, 2021

Follow-Up for Monthly NCDHHS Joint COVID Call

            Effective April 30th, per Executive Order 209, Schools may lift mask restrictions when outdoors.


NCDPI COVID Updates Webinar Tuesday, April 20

NCDPI Agency Horizontal Logo

Attention AP Coordinators: SBE Policy Update- GRAD-008 and CCRE-001

Dear AP Coordinators,

At the May 13 meeting of the North Carolina State Board of Education, there were revisions made to two SBE policies of which we wanted to be sure you are aware, as they are in place for the 2021-22 school year.


In the GRAD-008 policy, the revision approved by the SBE regarding advanced courses satisfying graduation requirements includes: 

  • AP Government and Politics will now satisfy the requirement for the Founding Principles of the United States of America and North Carolina: Civic Literacy course, as long as all of the founding principles from the legislation are covered in the curriculum.

Important information regarding teacher preparation for GRAD-008 

Due to this NEW opportunity, we hope your school will consider training additional staff in AP U.S. Government and Politics this summer at a virtual AP Summer Institute (APSI) through our NC AP Partnership scholarships (free to districts).

The attached flyer shows which North Carolina institutes are offering AP U.S. Government and Politics. The guidelines and other forms for scholarships are attached for your use. The NC AP Partnership will use the same process as they have for the APSI scholarships you have already submitted this school year.

**We are extending enrollment deadlines through the end of May, but be advised that institutes are filling quickly, so teachers should enroll immediately.**

If you have any questions, please contact beth.cross@dpi.nc.gov (SBE policy) or kkoch@collegeboard.org (APSI)


In the CCRE-001 policy, revisions approved by the SBE regarding high school courses in middle school include:

  • placement as part of acceleration plan;
  • alignment with the new Social Studies courses;
  • clarification of when this policy is available for students (prior to grade 9);
  • inclusion of all college-level options; and
  • clarification when graduation requirements change (when a student enters grade 9).

Thank you for all you do for students in North Carolina Public Schools! 


Beth Cross

NCDPI Consultant

Division of Advanced Learning and Gifted Education

School Mental Health Policy Report

Dear Charter School Leaders, 

As you may know, all charter schools are required to report their progress on meeting the guidelines set forth by the NC State Board of Education's SHLT-003:School-Based Mental Health (SBMH) Policy.  This is a new reporting requirement, and we have included the required reporting questions in the Healthy Active Children's (HAC) policy report.  You will be able to complete your report online. In the online reporting portal, you will indicate that you are a charter school, and you will be directed to the SBMH policy questions.  To make it easier for you to assemble your report information prior to going online, a Word version of the online survey is attached to this email. Please complete the online survey to submit your report.  

The information needed to complete the SBMH progress report will come from your School Mental Health Improvement Plan, which is required to upload and must include the mental health training program and suicide risk referral protocol.  

Please note the deadline to complete the HAC Progress Report / School Mental Health Policy Report is September 15, 2021. 

You can access the reporting portal through the link below.   

2021 Healthy Active Children Policy Report Survey

If you have questions or challenges in completing this online survey, please contact Les Spell at Les.Spell@dpi.nc.gov 

We appreciate the time and energy spent in completing this report and look forward to reading each submission. The Healthy Active Children Report / School Mental Health Policy Report is a valuable tool in efforts to provide quality school health systems that will raise academic achievement and promote physical and mental health among North Carolina’s schoolchildren.  

Thanks for all you do.


Les Spell

Data and Policy Consultant

NC Healthy Schools

North Carolina Department of Public Instruction




Reporting Discipline Data to the State

Per SBE policy (SSCH-000), incidents of certain behaviors and disciplinary actions must be submitted to the state within 5 business days of occurrence (see pages 4 - 6 on the North Carolina Discipline Data Reporting Procedures Manual). All discipline data must be submitted by June 30th of each year when the window for reporting closes.

To meet this requirement, the data must reside in the state database where it can be viewed in state reports. For these offenses to be pushed into the state database and be viewed in state reports, you must not only enter the offenses in PowerSchool but also run the State Discipline report in PowerSchool.  If you are using 3rd party software to enter your data, please verify with your vendor that your data is being submitted to PowerSchool in a timely manner. You should also verify that these data are accurate by running the state level reports periodically throughout the school year.

Also, please review the disciplinary data manual found on the NCDPI website and make sure your staff understands the definition of each of the reportable acts and consequences to ensure you are reporting them both correctly.


Please update your Discipline Data Coordinator Contact Information by filling out the Qualtrics Survey found here:




To help us maximize our support, we request your assistance in updating the ALPS District Data Coordinators Contact List and the ALPS Directory. To make it easy for you to provide your updates, we are utilizing Qualtrics Survey and Google Sheets (see links below). Once we receive your input, we will post the updated ALPS Directory on the NCDPI website. 


To update the ALPS Data Coordinator Contact List, click the link to the update form provided below:





To update the ALPS Directory, click the following link and make any necessary changes to the spreadsheet:




Superintendents and Charter School Directors, 

Please find the attached memo on Testing and Accountability Training. 

Thank you, 

Dr. Catherine Edmonds, Deputy Superintendent
Office of Educational Equity

Dr. Tammy Howard,  Director
Division of Accountability Services

Dave Machado, Director
Office of Charter Schools

State Mental Health Policy Resources


The policy webpage, linked here has a recorded session that walks though the policy, website, and real-life examples from districts at the end of the video.  At the bottom of the page is a blue button that loads the video. 

4/22/21 Charter Leader's Call Recording

MEMO - Alternative Schools’ Modified Accountability System Options

2021-2022 Home Base Opt-in Process Update

The NC DTL Home Base team is preparing to open the 2021-22 Home Base Opt-in Process during the month of May. The opt-in tool has been taken offline and will be returned to service by mid-May.  Finance officers and charter school directors will be notified when the tool is returned to service and available for opting into Home Base.

Integrated Academic and Behavior Systems

May 14, 2021 


Why is addressing Social and Emotional Learning important in an MTSS?MTSS is about effective instruction in all settings for all students, and research has demonstrated skills acquiredduring SEL is as teachable as academic standards and behavioral expectations. Students’ social-emotional skillscan be shaped well into adolescence; therefore, having a continuum of support from pre-kindergarten throughhigh school is a pillar of the model. The NC MTSS Team is collaborating with the NC SEL implementation Team to ensure NC schools have needed resources to support planning and effective implementation of SEL. Currently,  there are four primary platforms to deepen knowledge and stay updated on NC SEL:

 Additionally, our team would like to point you to this CASEL resource, The CASEL Guide to Schoolwide Social and Emotional Learning that  provides an intentional and collaborative implementation process. The guide can be found here: https://schoolguide.casel.org/.


Charter school leaders,

Please thoroughly read the memo, Justification Required for Exceeding 1.0 Percent Participation in the Alternate Assessment, from Dr. Catherine Edmonds, Dr. Tammy Howard, and Ms. Sherry Thomas.

Conference Information - Dual Enrollment: Accelerating Educational Attainment

The North Carolina Community College System, in partnership with the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, the SERVE Center at UNC-Greensboro, and the RAND Corporation, is hosting the Dual Enrollment: Accelerating Educational Attainment conference. This virtual conference will focus on lessons learned from both practitioners and researchers about expanding access and equity and preparing students for success in dual enrollment courses. Space is limited and the first 1000 registrants are free, so register now!   We encourage you to spread the word to the appropriate individuals in your district.

Exceptional Children Division

CFNC Countdown to College October 2021

Principals, Charter School Leaders, and CTE Directors,

NC Countdown to College events for the month of October 2021 are being scheduled! NC Countdown to College helps support students in preparation for college enrollment by promoting the importance of completing college applications, FAFSA, and Residency Determination.

During College Application Week, October 18 – 22, 2021, many North Carolina colleges and universities will waive application fees, which could save students hundreds of dollars if they’re planning to apply to multiple schools. We’ll release the list of schools soon!

Please mark your calendars and share this important information with high school juniors who will begin the exciting process of submitting college applications this fall!

For more information please visit CFNC.org.


Resources Galore

School Business Updates

Let’s Get Ready! A Family’s Guide to Support Kindergarten Readiness

Global Education Newsletter May 2021

NC Center for Safer Schools NEWSLETTER - May, 2021

STEMtastic News - May 2021

Monthly Update: NC Healthy Schools

2019-2022 Allotment Policy Manual for Funding that is Pandemic Related

Resources for GLE, NC's Seal of Biliteracy

Digital Learning Standards Course for 2021

Office of Charter Schools (OCS) Updates



SLA 1 - Summer School Guidance & Policy Recommendations - 

SL2021-7 requires each LEA to develop a school extension learning recovery and enrichment program.  Charter schools are encouraged to submit a plan for grade levels served by the school.  The program is to exist outside of the instructional calendar, meaning it cannot be an extension of the 2020-2021 academic year and must conclude prior to the beginning of the 2021-2022 school year.  For year-round schools, the program can be extended through October 1, 2021 by providing the program during track-out periods.  

Graduation Requirements – Keep these up to date!

OCS recommends that each charter school serving high school grades levels review the state graduation requirements each year and make sure all school requirements are aligned. State graduation requirements are changed periodically as a result of statutory or SBE policy changes. Graduation requirements are based on the entrance year of students into 9th grade.

You can find the state requirements here. Our office recommends two years of foreign language as the University of North Carolina schools require two years of a foreign language during high school for admission. We also recommend mirroring your course names exactly as listed in the graduation requirements so there is no confusion. All schools are required to offer the Occupational Course of Study diploma.

OCS Consultant Sites:

Performance Framework Companion Site


Professional Learning 101


The Scoop With Coop-All Things Renewals 


Ready to Open/Planning Year

Other News about Our Charter Schools:


The Gaston Gazette reports Piedmont Community Charter's new high school completed on Robinwood Road

TOY JWhite

Charter Schools were very well represented by Jeremy White, West Lake Preparatory Academy Kindergarten teacher and Charter Teacher of the Year 2021, at the Burroughs Wellcome Fund North Carolina Teacher of the Year awards April 9th. Jeremy is an alum of Elon University and UNC Charlotte, with 9 years of teaching experience, including several years teaching in Japan. He is also a published author. State Superintendent of Public Instruction, Catherine Truitt, recognized Jeremy and other NC regional candidates before announcing the 2021 NC Teacher of the Year, Ms. Eugenia Floyd, of Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools.

Purple Star Designation

OCS thanks and congratulates 5 schools recognized by the 2021 Purple Star Award for serving the families of those serving in our nation's armed forces:

  • Alpha Academy
  • Anderson Creek Academy
  • Northeast Academy for Aerospace and Advanced Technologies
  • Peak Charter Academy
  • Wayne Preparatory

Leadership Opportunities:

Rocky Mount Preparatory School - Multiple K-12 Opportunities

Union Academy Charter School Middle School Principal and High School Guidance Counselor

Chief Academic Officer for North Carolina Cyber Academy

Carolina International School Principal

Raleigh Charter High School - Multiple Opportunities!

Magellan Charter 5th Grade Language Arts/Social Studies Teacher

The Magellan Charter School EC Teacher

Brevard Academy School Director

Lincoln Charter Human Resources Director

The Magellan Charter School Administrator

Old Main STREAM Academy School Principal

Old Main STREAM Academy Staff

Socrates Academy - Multiple Opportunities!

Pine Springs Prep Middle School Principal

Cape Fear Center for Inquiry: School Director

Carolina International Art, PE, Biology, 6th Grade, Interventionist

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

Shaunda Cooper      984 236 2712

Consultant, Renewals & Stakeholder Support

Claire Porter              984 236 2707

Consultant, Planning Year & 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, Professional Development

Melanie Rackley     984 236 2712

Consultant, Charter Applications

Jay Whalen              984 236 2711

Program Administrator, NC ACCESS Program

Barbara O'Neal        984 236 2706

Program Coordinator, NC ACCESS Program

Davida Robinson   984 236 2878

NC ACCESS Subgrant Program Manager

Lakisha Robbins  984 236 2704

NC ACCESS Finance Administrator