Recruit operators and publish general needs for restart providers
Why Does This Matter?
- Recruiting and cultivating talented leaders and high-performing school operators is essential to the success of restarts and the ability to scale up this approach.
- A limited number of operators have successfully undertaken school restarts. Not all of them are willing or able to conduct additional restarts. Developing a strategic approach to high-quality operator recruitment helps address the key challenge of supply.
- Authorizers cannot take a “build it and they will come” approach, but must take steps to create the policy conditions that support successful restarts, and create an authorization process that provides operators with adequate information, time, and resources.
- Authorizers may need to work with other organizations such as charter school or school leader incubators that can help build operator supply.
- Authorizers may need to cultivate an appetite for restart among successful new-start charter operators in the community and/or connect them with support organizations and resources to embrace a school restart.
Profiles of Restart Authorization Practices
Charter Operator Recruitment in Louisiana
In Louisiana, a coalition of organizations including the Recovery School District Louisiana Department of Education, Jefferson Parish Public School System, New Schools for New Orleans, and New Schools for Baton Rouge worked together to recruit high-performing charter school organizations to operate schools in Louisiana. The coalition held a Future Schools Summit in January 2013 that brought in outside charter school organizations, and provided a forum to highlight Louisiana’s favorable conditions for school operators and opportunities to open new and restart schools. The collaboration also produced operator recruiting and marketing materials for a coordinated process of recruiting and cultivating high-quality charter school organizations. Learn more here.
Recruiting Restart Leaders in Massachusetts
Restart interventions in Springfield, Mass., will operate under a governance structure and operating conditions that resemble both restart and turnaround models. Because there aren’t enough restart operators, the Springfield Empowerment Zone Partnership, a new city-state governing entity for the lowest-performing schools, is recruiting and developing leaders to conduct a restart under its Founders Fellowship program. Learn more here.
Tennessee Charter School Fund: Expanding the Supply of Restart Operators through School Incubation and CMO Expansion
The Tennessee Charter School Fund used federal grants and private philanthropy to fund the Tennessee Charter School Incubator and a separate, Tennessee-specific CMO investment fund. The Tennessee Charter School Fund was instrumental to the growth of the state’s charter sector between 2010 and 2015. Several of the charter school operators in the Achievement School District received critical funding and technical assistance from the incubator and investment fund. Learn more here.
Denver’s “Call for Quality Schools” to Recruit Potential Restart Operators
Denver releases a “Call for Quality Schools” each December. The document profiles school performance in different regions of the city to illustrate where new schools should go if they want to provide a better option for underserved students, without taking a stand on charter versus district-run schools. It also profiles parts of Denver that need new schools due to population growth. It sometimes includes specific school restart needs, as in this guide’s Step 2B: Identify, and other times includes more general restart needs as in Step 2A: Identify. See a sample here.
Louisiana Charter Operator Pitch Book
Louisiana DOE Call To Action October 2013
NSNO Investing in Innovation (i3) Grant Application for Restart Operators
Recruit Charter Operators
UP Autonomies and Local Conditions Required to Greenlight Restart
Massachusetts Request for Information (RFI) for Level 5 School Turnaround Receivers (Operators)
Founders Fellowship Program Description and Application
Charter RFP Guidance for Applicants
Growing a High Quality Charter Sector: Lessons from Tennessee
Call for New Quality Schools 2016