OCS Weekly Newsletter for August 17, 2021

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Office of Charter Schools

Office of Charter Schools Logo

6307 Mail Service Center, Raleigh, NC 27699-6307  

Weekly Newsletter- August 17, 2021

Melanie Spotlight

Teammate in the Spotlight 

With the new school year we are adding a new feature to our newsletter. Each month we will put a face to the name of one of the amazing staff at the Office of Charter Schools. First up is one of our newer consultants, Ms. Melanie Rackley!


Melanie joined OCS in October 2020. Prior to joining, she worked within the agency as an Education Licensure Specialist for five years. Melanie has held various roles at the Division of Child Development and Early Education including the NC Pre-K program. Melanie also brings Human Resources experience from private industry and UNC systems. In her spare time she enjoys travel, history and visiting museums. She is the reigning Jeopardy champion in her family. Melanie is a graduate of UNC-Chapel Hill’s School of Journalism and the Executive Master of Public Administration program at North Carolina Central University. In her current role, she serves as Applications Team Lead for the Office of Charter Schools.

Upcoming Events and Reminders!

Save the Date!


New Homeless Liaison Training for Charter Schools

NCHEP will be providing the New Homeless Liaison Compliance Training for liaisons in charter schools (including Charter, Lab, ISD and Virtual Schools) virtually on Thursday, September 16, 2021. Participation in the training is required for homeless liaisons who are new to their position.  Please contact your Program Specialist, Tricia Lentz, to obtain the training session access link.

For session times and additional details, visit the NHLCT web page.

Coding & Mobile App Development Grant Application Q&A Session

Renewals corrected

2021 OCS Office Hours Are Back 9/20 at 11:30a.m.

EL Stakeholders From: ESL/Title III Team - EL Program Quality

Inviting NC Public School EL Stakeholders including EL Coordinators, designees, and school leaders to join one session this fall.

Schedule and registration links

Title & Audience Date & Time Registration link

Program Quality & Compliance for New EL Coordinators

Monday, August 9, 2:00 - 4:00 pm  

Program Quality & Compliance Updates for Experienced EL Coordinators

Friday, August 13, 1:00 - 3:00 pm  

LIEP Training for School Districts Non-Title III Subgrantees

Friday, September 17, 9:00 - 10:00 am Register

LIEP Training for Charter Schools Non-Title III Subgrantees (Morning Offering)

Tuesday, September 21, 9:00 - 11:00 am Register

LIEP Training for Charter Schools Non-Title III Subgrantees (Afternoon Offering)

Thursday, September 23, 1:00 - 3:00 pm Register





Bradford Preparatory Academy will be hosting an active shooter situation training November 22nd-23rd. If you are interested, please find details linked.



Follow-Up for Monthly NCDHHS Joint COVID Call

Additional resources referenced in the call:

8.3.21 DPI Slide Deck

8.3.21 DHHS Slide Deck

At Home Testing Guidance

CDC COVID Symptoms List

CDC Antigen Testing Algorithm


Charter Leaders call with DPI Senior Leadership

8/12/21 DPI Charter Leader's Call Recording

Memo: Delayed Scoring for 2021-22 SY

School Business Division


Confirmation of Funds for Annual Financial Statement Audits by CPA firms


DPI is providing the appropriate reports to your independent auditors via the internet. These reports for FY21 are now posted in a public application at: http://apps.schools.nc.gov/auditorconfirmationreports  (Annual Reports).

Please direct your independent auditor to the site provided.


Please contact Roxane Bernard at roxane.bernard@dpi.nc.gov with any questions.


Rethink ED


                      Superintendents and Charter School Leaders,

We have great news! You may now designate ambassadors from your district and/or charter to participate in the Rethink Education Facilitator Badging cohort.

As a reminder, the Rethink Education program is a new statewide effort to strengthen remote and blended learning across North Carolina’s K-12 schools in response to COVID-19. Rethink Ed is specifically aligned to support K-8 learning and access to excellent instruction. The program will provide both professional development and high-quality online content for grades K-8 that will be available to all NC districts and charters.

The Rethink Education professional development is being developed through a partnership between NCDPI and NCCAT and is aligned to highly acclaimed research conducted by the Christensen Institute in partnership with Michael Horn and Heather Staker. The professional development is designed to prepare educators to become “Blended Learning Facilitators” in their district. They will receive training on the four blended instructional models and will receive a “Blended Learning Facilitator” badge upon completion of the professional development course.

Once badged as a "Blended Learning Facilitator," these facilitators will be equipped to lead professional development within your district/charter on blended learning models. In addition to earning a Facilitator Badge, they will receive a $500 stipend. The sessions they will lead within your district/charter will prepare other teachers to become badged as "Blended Learning Instructors." There is no cost to districts/charters for this training.

Rethink Education begins state-wide implementation in September 2021, with our first cohort of facilitators beginning on September 20th. Each district may submit the names of up to ten ambassadors to participate in this cohort. Each charter school may submit the names of two ambassadors to participate in this cohort. The visual included below outlines the Rethink Ed badging pathways.

We are currently collecting participation information from district and charter leaders. You may use the link below to submit your facilitator ambassadors for this cohort. Please submit these names no later than August 19, 2021.

Should you have questions about this, please reach out to Melissa Davis, Director of Rethink Education, or Rachel Wright Junio, Project Manager for Rethink Education.

Click here to submit ambassador names. 



IB Important Update - Invoices

OCR/CRDC - Office of Civil Rights Coordinator Contacts in EDDIE - Due Friday, September 24, 2021


Please read and inform other staff as appropriate.

Dear Coordinators,

The Office of Civil Rights Data Collection (CRDC) window for the 2020-2021 school year data will begin in early 2022.  Note:  PSUs that were not open in the school year 2020-2021 are not required to participate in this collection. 

  • The first step in preparing for the collection is ensuring the NCDPI has the most recent staff contact information.  
    • PSUs must verify or update the EDDIE system with two Staff who have been identified as the 'Office of Civil Rights Coordinator'. 
    • Delete any records in EDDIE for OCR contacts that are no longer with your PSU. 
  • These staff personnel are the technical contacts for the CRDC and will be responsible for running the PowerSchool CRDC Preview Report, verifying data, correcting and adding data to the Federal CRDC tool, and certifying in the Federal CRDC tool when the collection is complete.
  • PSUs are also strongly advised to verify or update the Student Information Coordinator contact as well.  Updates must be completed by the close of business, Friday, September 24, 2021

More information about the CRDC is located at https://crdc.grads360.org/#program.  Notice on the homepage that there is a timeline of the CRDC phases.  

It is important to keep in mind that the NCDPI assists all PSUs with the CRDC by facilitating the transfer of data to the federal submission tool.  No action other than to update your contacts in EDDIE is required at this time.  

For questions, please contact Terra Dominguez at terra.dominguez@dpi.nc.gov


MEMO: Science of Reading Professional Learning and K-3 Formative/Diagnostic Assessment

Timing of UID Export Uploads to Staff UID System:


For school HR/Payroll staff/management,

As a reminder, there should be a timely and accurate exchange of data between the PSU payroll system and the Staff UID System. This includes any new staff members who need access to K-12 related systems (i.e. PowerSchool, Schoolnet, NCEES, etc.). Additionally, new staff that have been hired but who are not yet receiving a paycheck can be added to the payroll system, and subsequently included in the Staff UID export file to receive a UID. Non-payroll staff members who work with a PSU but are not entered into the payroll system can still be added to the Staff UID System, via the ‘Add Staff’ feature. Documentation for adding non-payroll staff to the Staff UID System can be found at https://files.nc.gov/dpi/documents/UID/acquiring-uid-for-non-payroll-staff.pdf

ESSER Reminder

Dear Charter Directors,
This is a reminder that the 2021-2022 Eligible Schools Summary Report (ESSR) must be submitted in PowerSchool for all local education agencies (LEAs) and charter schools in North Carolina. All charter schools are required to report these data regardless of whether they accept any federal funds and the report is used to meet several requirements, such as School Report Card, CEDARS and Teacher Loan Forgiveness.  Thank you in advance for your support.

Information regarding the data collection can be found at  https://www.dpi.nc.gov/districts-schools/federal-program-monitoring/federal-program-data-collection

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



School Mental Health Policy Report pdf

School Mental Health Policy Report doc

Exceptional Children Division

CECLI is our Charter Exceptional Children's Leadership Institute we offer to charter coordinators in their first couple of years, to provide support and guidance in navigating EC as the EC coordinator/director. This PDF contains a link that provides the memo outlining what we are offering, a registration link and directions to ensure the application is completed and submitted on time.  

Please see the parent newsletter below. 

Resources Galore

School Business Website

School Business – August 13, 2021

NC SIS Weekly Email Bulletin

North Carolina Public Schools - School Social Work August Update

STEMtastic News - August 2021

NCDPI School Counseling Newsletter

Digital Learning Standards Course

Monthly ELD Standards Update -- Issue #1

Monthly Update: NC Healthy Schools

August First Tuesday Science Update

NCDPI Arts Education Newsletter - August 9, 2021

K-12 Education Office of Government and Community Affairs Update - Monday, August 9, 2021

August 2021 K-12 Monthly Mathematics Update

Special Edition August 2021: Social Studies Update

CSADM Phase II Info

NCDPI School Counseling Updates

Opportunity: Announcing the 2021 Injury-Free NC Academy on Comprehensive Suicide Prevention

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

Digital Learning Standards Course for 2021

TD Bank grant opportunity - TD 2021 Ready Challenge

NC Lions KidSight Screening program

United States Senate Student Applications Available Until October 3rd

Please be sure to keep EDDIE up to date!


Office of Charter Schools (OCS) Updates



Planning Year Calendar 2021-2022

The Office of Charter Schools is pleased to release the dates for the 2021-2022 Planning Year Professional Development calendar. All schools (boards and school leaders)  in the Ready to Open process are required to attend five (5) planning year sessions as well as the New Charter Leaders Institute in June, 2022, as part of the successful completion of the Ready to Open and Planning Year process. While these sessions are mandatory for brand new charter schools, we invite those who may new to a leadership role at an established charter school to join the virtual sessions, or access the materials online, under the Planning Year tab of the Office of Charter School's website.


The 2021 NC ACCESS Program Annual Review is here!

Learn how NC ACCESS Program subgrantees are developing leaders and supporting educationally disadvantaged students across the state.




The NC ACCESS Program is back with more free professional development opportunities for all charter school leaders and staff.

Some initial sessions have been posted and more are on the way! Click on a session below to learn more and register.


Visit our website at ncaccessprogram.com/learn to keep up with new development opportunities.




The most powerful professional development is watching another teacher teach, yet we rarely have time for it. In this session we will look at how to create a culture of collaboration through encouraging teachers to learn and grow from each other.

Sep 14, 2021





How do you get to know your students in a meaningful way, in order to build relationships and capitalize on students’ strengths? We will discuss how to collect meaningful data from your students in order to create relevant lessons that set your students up for success.

Sep 28, 2021





This session examines ways to address the physical, social, emotional, and cognitive needs of students. This session is geared toward any educator or staff member that works with students.

Oct 19, 2021





The past year educators spent countless hours learning digital tools to make their lessons dynamic and engaging. In this session we will dive into how to use different digital tools, no matter what your classroom space looks like.

Nov 16, 2021





We will dive into tips and tricks for teaching content area literacy. This session is for teachers of all grade levels and subjects.

Dec 7, 2021

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:


GLOW Academy Announces Grant and Partnership with Sony Pictures Entertainment and the Sony Global Social Justice Fund to Develop Media Technology Curriculum and Studio

OCS Consultant Dr. Darian Jones hand delivered 7 Principal of the Year appreciation checks to the 7 Charter One PoTy finalists! Thank you for all you do!

Leadership Opportunities:

American Renaissance School Spanish Teacher for K-5

Bonnie Cone Classical Academy - Multiple Opportunities!

Carolina Charter Academy - 6th Grade Math Teacher

Carolina International School Principal

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

IC Imagine - Director of Exceptional Children

Lakeside Charter Academy EC Teacher

Chief Academic Officer for North Carolina Cyber Academy

Old Main STREAM Academy Staff

Pine Lake Prep - Multiple Opportunities!

Pine Springs Preparatory Academy - Math Teacher

Pine Springs Preparatory Academy - MS Technology Teacher

Raleigh Charter High School - Multiple Opportunities!

Rocky Mount Preparatory School - Multiple K-12 Opportunities

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