Philadelphia Great Schools Compact Update: Meeting #11
April 30, 2012
April 18, 2012
1. The Philadelphia School Partnership gave an overview of the GreatPhillySchools, the product line that will provide the community access to school information and performance data across all systems. The initiative will launch in fall 2012, in partnership with several other nonprofit stakeholders.
2. With the Gates’ proposal deadline approaching, the committee reviewed an outline of the Philadelphia’s submission. Core components to the framework include: dramatically improving high quality options, accountability for all schools, the development and execution of an information resource, a common enrollment system, post-secondary readiness, school provider autonomy, leadership pipeline development, teacher development & evaluation, leadership & talent pipeline expansion, expanding students’ access to program choice, and increasing accessibility to school facilities. Philadelphia is one of eight cities competing for Gates’ funding, and is submitting a proposal for $5M by the May 1, 2012 deadline.
3. Committee members spoke candidly about how the past and current conversations at the compact table both incorporate the smaller, independent charter schools and how committed the district is to a true district-charter partnership, as is articulated in tenents of the Great Schools Compact. Charter representatives on the committee articulated the tensions within the charter community stemming from the perceived disconnect between system building, the overall big picture framing, and how specifically the charter community (both the CMOs and the independent charters) fit.
- The SRC is committed to engaging in consistent transparent conversations publicly as it steers the city through there continued budget crisis into the next fiscal year, through the restructuring of Philadelphia’s public education system.
- Given the district’s financial realities, it is clear that if city council does not approve the $94M in additional support to the district (by way of overdue and unpaid property taxes), all plans for the district’s—and the city’s—plan re: public education are theoretical.
- The district, and the SRC, is mindful of the concerns raised by independent charter operators. To the extent that the district can manage changes in catchment areas and feeder patterns in the near future given some of the nearer term changes, the expressed tensions and challenges will begin to fade. The district has to figure out how to manage all challenges given how many there are across the spectrum—including the charter renewal issue—quickly.
4. The SRC is committed to pushing quality education and increasing the number of high performing options in the city. As such, the SRC is open to all constructive input from compact committee members on how to best approach the renewal situation, given all challenges the district is managing.
- As the compact’s facilitator, PSP is committed to playing more of a consistent role in these conversations going forward, to ensure that all voices are heard on all sides of the conversation, in support of the quality movement.
The Great Schools Compact is a joint commitment of school providers and education leaders to ensure that policies, strategies and resources align to a common goal of providing a high-performing school option for every child.
The Compact is signed by The School District of Philadelphia, The Pennsylvania Coalition of Charter Schools, Philadelphia Charters for Excellence, the Mayor’s Office of Education, and the Pennsylvania Department of Education as a commitment to share responsibility and work together to expand high-quality K-12 school options and dramatically reduce the number of chronically underperforming schools by 2016-17. Please click here to review the Great Schools Compact.
The Philadelphia School Partnership serves as the facilitator of the Compact Committee. The committee was established to oversee implementation of the Compact tenants and action plan, adhering to a results-driven timeline. The committee is comprised of eight voting and two non-voting members. Voting members include:
- Lawrence Jones, CEO of Richard Allen Preparatory Charter School
- Dr. Naomi Johnson-Booker, CEO of Global Leadership Academy
- David Rossi, CEO of Nueva Esperanza Academy
- Dr. Leroy Nunery, Special Advisor, School District of Philadelphia
- Pedro Ramos, Chairman of the School Reform Commission
- Joe Dworetzky, Commissioner, School Reform Commission
- Dr. Lori Shorr, Chief Education Officer, Mayor’s Office for Education
- Michael Wilson, Special Assistant to the Pennsylvania Secretary of Education
Nonvoting members include:
- Scott Gordon, CEO of Mastery Charter Schools
- Mark Gleason, Executive Director of the Philadelphia School Partnership
- Penny Nixon, Chief Academic Officer, School District of Philadelphia