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The Massachusetts Board of Elementary and Secondary Education

Charter Schools - Charters Renewed for Abby Kelley Foster Charter Public School, Boston Collegiate Charter School, Boston Day and Evening Academy Charter School, Excel Academy Charter School, Four Rivers Charter Public School, Sturgis Charter Public School, Mystic Valley Regional Charter School, Silver Hill Horace Mann Charter School, Smith Leadership Academy Charter Public School

To:
Members of the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education
From:
Mitchell D. Chester, Ed.D., Commissioner
Date:
February 15, 2013

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At its meeting in October 2011, the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education (Board) voted to authorize the Commissioner to act on its behalf in "(a) granting charter renewals that do not involve probation; and (b) approving charter amendments that do not involve changes in grade span, maximum enrollment, or districts served; provided that the Commissioner shall report to the Board on all charter renewals and charter amendments that have been so approved; and provided further, that the Commissioner shall notify the Board in advance of all such intended actions, and a Board member may request that the Commissioner place the charter matter(s) on the agenda of the Board for discussion and action."

On February 8, 2013, I notified the Board that I intended to renew, without conditions, the charters of six schools: Abby Kelley Foster Charter Public School, Boston Collegiate Charter School, Boston Day and Evening Academy Charter School, Excel Academy Charter School, Four Rivers Charter Public School, and Sturgis Charter Public School. Additionally, I notified the Board that I intended to renew the charters of three schools and impose conditions on their charters: Mystic Valley Regional Charter School, Silver Hill Horace Mann Charter School, and Smith Leadership Academy Charter Public School. At that time, I gave the Board the opportunity to request that any of these proposed renewals be brought to the full Board for review and vote at its meeting scheduled for February 26, 2013. Because no Board member requested that any of these matters be brought to the full Board for review, I am now notifying the Board that I have renewed the charters of these nine schools.

Summary information regarding these nine schools is provided in this memorandum. Each charter is renewed for the period of July 1, 2013 through June 30, 2018. In the case of schools with charters that were renewed with conditions, the corrective actions that they must take are also included. The charter of each school is renewed for the maximum enrollment, grades served, and district(s) served, as described below, and shall be operated in accordance with the provisions of G.L. c. 71, § 89; 603 CMR 1.00; and all other applicable state and federal laws and regulations and such additional conditions as the Commissioner may from time to time establish, all of which shall be deemed conditions of the charter.

Abby Kelley Foster Charter Public School

Mission statement: "The mission of the Abby Kelley Foster Charter Public School is to assist parents in their role as primary educators of their children by providing a classical liberal arts education grounded in the great works of Western Civilization and aimed at academic excellence, musical competence and character formation."

Abby Kelley Foster Charter Public School (AKFCPS)
Type of CharterCommonwealthLocationWorcester
Regional/Non-RegionalRegionalDistricts in RegionAuburn, Holden, Leicester, Millbury, Oxford, Shrewsbury, Sutton, West Boylston, Worcester
Maximum Enrollment1,426Chartered Grade SpanK-12

Boston Collegiate Charter School

Mission statement: "to prepare each student for college."

BCCS Charter School (BCCS)
Type of CharterCommonwealthLocationBoston
Regional/Non-RegionalNon-RegionalDistricts in RegionNA
Maximum Enrollment665Chartered Grade Span5-12

Boston Day and Evening Academy Charter School [Horace Mann]

Mission statement: "Boston Day and Evening Academy is an innovative, year-round public high school founded in 1995 that serves a unique population of students who are overage for grade level and at high risk of dropping out. Working with experienced faculty in an environment that blends strong academics and support, students are given the tools to earn a Boston Public Schools diploma and reach their fullest potential through a competency-based curriculum that inspires critical and creative thinking, independent learning, and active citizenship."

Boston Day and Evening Academy Charter School (BDEA)
Type of CharterHorace MannLocationBoston
Regional/Non-RegionalNon-RegionalDistricts in RegionBoston
Maximum Enrollment405Chartered Grade Span9-12

Excel Academy Charter School

Mission statement: "Excel Academy Charter School's mission is to prepare middle school students to succeed in high school and college, apply their learning to solve relevant problems, and engage productively in their communities."

Excel Academy Charter School (Excel)
Type of CharterCommonwealthLocationEast Boston
Regional/Non-RegionalRegionalDistricts in RegionBoston, Chelsea
Maximum Enrollment300Chartered Grade Span5-8

Four Rivers Charter Public School

Mission statement: "Four Rivers Charter Public School is dedicated to educating young people for lives of learning and service. The school offers a rigorous academic program aligned with the Massachusetts curriculum frameworks and an emphasis on character development for moral and social responsibility. Three central themes--nature, technology and community--guide teaching and learning at the school, engaging students and teachers in a fundamental question of our times: how do we find the healthy, sustainable interrelationship of the natural world, technology in its many forms, and the human community? The school works closely with parents and seeks both to serve and to learn from the many resources of Franklin County."

Four Rivers Charter Public School (FRCPS)
Type of CharterCommonwealthLocationGreenfield
Regional/Non-RegionalRegionalDistricts in RegionFrontier, Gill-Montague, Greenfield, Mohawk Trail, Pioneer Valley, Ralph C. Mahar Regional
Maximum Enrollment212Chartered Grade Span7-12

Sturgis Charter Public School

Mission statement: "Sturgis Charter Public School is dedicated to an 'International Baccalaureate (IB) for All' philosophy, preparing high school students for higher education in a supportive learning environment. Sturgis provides each student a rigorous world-class educational program, encouraging academic achievement, intellectual confidence, and personal growth."

Sturgis Charter Public School (SCPS)
Type of CharterCommonwealthLocationHyannis
Regional/Non-RegionalRegionalDistricts in RegionBarnstable, Bourne, Carver, Chatham, Dennis-Yarmouth, Falmouth, Harwich, Mashpee, Nauset, Plymouth, Provincetown, Sandwich, Wareham
Maximum Enrollment800Chartered Grade Span9-12

Mystic Valley Regional Charter School

Mission statement: "The mission of the Mystic Valley Regional Charter School is to provide the opportunity of a world class education characterized by a well mannered, disciplined and structured academic climate. Central to Mystic Valley's academic environment is the incorporation of selected core virtues and the fundamental ideals of our American Culture, which are embodied in the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution."

Mystic Valley Regional Charter School (MVRCS)
Type of CharterCommonwealthLocationMalden
Regional/Non-RegionalRegionalDistricts in RegionEverett, Malden, Medford, Melrose, Stoneham, Wakefield
Maximum Enrollment1,500Chartered Grade SpanK-12

This renewal is explicitly conditioned as follows. Failure to meet these conditions may result in the Board placing Mystic Valley Regional Charter School on probation, revoking its charter, or imposing additional conditions on its charter.

  1. Beginning in March 2013 and until further notice, the Mystic Valley Regional Charter School (MVRCS) will submit to the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (Department), at charterschools@doe.mass.edu or 75 Pleasant St., Malden, MA, 02148, board meeting agendas, materials, and minutes prior to each board meeting at the same time these items are sent to MVRCS board members. The Department reserves the right to request additional information, such as quarterly or monthly financial statements, if board materials do not already include this information, and MVRCS must provide such additional information within two business days.
  2. By May 31, 2013, the Board of Trustees of MVRCS shall amend its bylaws to set specific, reasonable limits on successive or total terms that a member may serve on the board of trustees. These limits must apply to all current board members.
  3. By May 31, 2013, the Board of Trustees of MVRCS will engage in a comprehensive self-evaluation of its own capacity and recruit additional members who have the needed expertise.
  4. By July 31, 2013, the Board of Trustees of MVRCS will expand the board membership to at least seven members.
  5. By September 30, 2013, the Board of Trustees of MVRCS will engage in training, conducted by an external consultant, accepted and approved in advance by the Department, on the roles and responsibilities of a public charter school board of trustees.

Silver Hill Horace Mann Charter School

Mission statement: "The mission of Silver Hill Horace Mann Charter School is to be a whole school community that provides a thriving learning environment educates, inspires, challenges and nurtures the minds and well-being of our diverse population of children in kindergarten through grade 5 where all children will achieve high academic standards and develop positive citizenship and character traits. Silver Hill supports the growth of the Whole Child and the continuous professional development of the teachers in collaboration with the families of Silver Hill and the Haverhill community."

Silver Hill Horace Mann Charter School (SHHMCS)
Type of CharterHorace MannLocationHaverhill
Regional/Non-RegionalNon-RegionalDistricts in RegionNA
Maximum Enrollment580Chartered Grade SpanK-5

This renewal is explicitly conditioned as follows. Failure to meet these conditions may result in the Board placing Silver Hill Horace Mann Charter School on probation, revoking its charter, or imposing additional conditions on its charter.

  1. Beginning in March 2013 and until further notice, the Silver Hill Horace Mann Charter School (SHHMCS) will submit to the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (Department), at charterschools@doe.mass.edu or 75 Pleasant St., Malden, MA, 02148, board meeting agendas, materials, and minutes prior to each board meeting at the same time these items are sent to SHHMCS board members. The Department reserves the right to request additional information, such as quarterly or monthly financial statements, if board materials do not already include this information, and SHHMCS must provide such additional information within two business days.
  2. By May 31, 2013, the Board of Trustees of SHHMCS will engage in a comprehensive self-evaluation of its own capacity and recruit additional members who have the needed expertise.
  3. By September 30, 2013, the Board of Trustees of SHHMCS will engage in training, conducted by an external consultant, accepted and approved in advance by the Department, on the roles and responsibilities of a charter school board of trustees.
  4. By December 31, 2013, SHHMCS shall implement the key elements of its educational program model in alignment with its charter or request an amendment to its charter to accurately reflect the school's educational program.
  5. By December 31, 2014, SHHMCS shall provide written evidence and documented through the site visit process, of consistent implementation of its educational program in alignment with its charter.

Smith Leadership Academy Charter Public School

Mission statement: "Our mission is to develop high-achieving students of good character who use problem solving, communication, and interpersonal skills to inspire others and to catalyze educational, economic, and political advancement within their communities and the broader nation."

Smith Leadership Academy Charter School (SLACS)
Type of CharterCommonwealthLocationBoston
Regional/Non-RegionalNon-RegionalDistricts in RegionNA
Maximum Enrollment216Chartered Grade Span6-8

This renewal is explicitly conditioned as follows. Failure to meet these conditions may result in the Board placing Smith Leadership Academy Charter School on probation, revoking its charter, or imposing additional conditions on its charter.

  1. Beginning in March 2013 and until further notice, the Smith Leadership Academy Charter School (SLACS) will submit to the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (Department), at charterschools@doe.mass.edu or 75 Pleasant St., Malden, MA, 02148, board meeting agendas, materials, and minutes prior to each board meeting at the same time these items are sent to SLACS board members. The Department reserves the right to request additional information, such as quarterly or monthly financial statements, if board materials do not already include this information, and SLACS must provide such additional information within two business days.
  2. By May 31, 2013, the Board of Trustees of SLACS will engage in a comprehensive self-evaluation of its own capacity and recruit additional members who have the needed expertise.
  3. By September 30, 2013, the Board of Trustees of SLACS will engage in training, conducted by an external consultant, accepted and approved in advance by the Department, on the roles and responsibilities of a charter school board of trustees.

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If you have any questions or require additional information, please contact Cliff Chuang, Associate Commissioner (781-338-3222); Jeff Wulfson, Deputy Commissioner (781-338-6500); or me.



Last Updated: March 1, 2013
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