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Massachusetts Charter Schools

Charter School Performance Criteria Version 3.0 - Final Draft for Review

To:Massachusetts Charter School Leaders and Board Chairs
From:Cliff Chuang, Associate Commissioner
Date:May 28, 2013


Over the course of April and May of 2013, the Department gathered feedback both internally and externally regarding the updated draft of the Common School Performance Criteria. (See and for prior updates). Feedback opportunities included presenting the draft for feedback and questions at the Massachusetts Charter Public School Association (MCPSA), a forum held at the Department in Malden, three conference calls, and the public BESE charter committee meeting on May 20, 2013. The Department also received individual phone calls and emails from charter school leaders, board members, and both regional and national charter school authorizing experts.

Significant changes to the April 8, 2013 draft posted for review and comment based on the above feedback include:

  • A change of language in one rating category from "approaches" to "partially met" based on feedback that "approaches" was unclear.
  • Reordering the criteria to begin with Faithfulness to Charter, and a clarification that the numbering system is used for reference purposes and does not signify a particular priority or weight for each criterion, based on the response that the prior order made the area seem less important.
  • Changes to the governance criterion to address the concerns raised by commenters.
  • A clarification regarding what the Department will be consider in terms of dissemination.
  • A footnote that indicates that the program delivery criterion will be rated at the indicator level as well.
  • A number of language clarifications in order to ensure that the Criteria adhered to the key guiding principles.
  • A listing of sources of evidences has been added.

A final draft for review, dated May 28, 2013, incorporating the changes described above is attached (and will be posted at If you have any remaining major concerns that you have not yet communicated, please let us know by the end of this week, May 31, 2013, by either emailing your comments to, or calling one the following staff members:

Alison Bagg, 781-338-3218
Barry Barnett, 781-338-3225
Claire Smithney, 781-338-3213
Ellie Rounds, 781-338-3212

Unless any new major concerns come to our attention, we will finalize Version 3.0 of the Criteria next week. In addition, please find updated revision target dates for related accountability protocol updates.

Accountability DocumentTarget Release Date
Common School Performance Criteria, v. 3.0June 3, 2013
Application for Renewal: Posted May 10, 2013
Accountability Plan Guidelines (rolled out by renewal cohort)June 7, 2013
Annual Report GuidelinesJune 7, 2013
Amendment Technical AdvisoryJune 15, 2013
Other documents and guidelines, including site visit and renewal inspection protocols.Summer/Fall 2013

As always, please don't hesitate to contact us with questions or concerns (; 781-338-3227). Thank you.

Last Updated: May 31, 2013
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