Charter School Independence Webinar

Have you taken intentional steps to ensure you have a positive culture and that your school community values what is unique about your school? Do you know what you would do (both legally and specific steps) if you learned that an organizing effort was underway with your teachers? This session was available to CSDC School Members only and was not recorded. Select resources were posted to the resource directory for CSDC School Members after the webinar.

Further related sessions will be offered at this year’s Leadership Update Conference.

CSDC was pleased to partner with the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools to provide California school leaders with the information and tools needed. Attendees heard from experts from both the national and state levels and received essential information, best practices, and examples to guide their efforts.

On Tuesday, August 18, 2020, 9:00-11:00AM, CSDC offered an opportunity to hear from members of the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, as well as from a California charter school leader.

CSDC urged charter school leaders and board members to be aware of the importance of building a strong school culture.


Todd Ziebarth
Senior Vice President, State Advocacy and Support, National Alliance for Public Charter Schools.

Todd Ziebarth, Senior Vice President, State Advocacy and Support, National Alliance for Public Charter SchoolsTodd Ziebarth is the senior vice president for state advocacy and support for the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools. In this role, he leads the National Alliance’s work to improve state charter school laws. Todd has helped numerous states enact laws to better support high-quality public charter schools. He has also authored many national- and state-level research and policy publications related to key charter school issues. Previously, he worked as a policy analyst both at the Education Commission of the States from 1997 to 2003 and at Augenblick, Palaich, and Associates from 2003 to 2005. He has a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Western Michigan University, a master’s degree in public administration from the University of Colorado at Denver, and a master’s degree in urban and regional planning from the University of Colorado at Denver.

George Parker
Senior Advisor, School Support, National Alliance for Public Charter Schools

George Parker,Senior Advisor, School Support, National Alliance for Public Charter SchoolsGeorge Parker, a distinguished educator and expert on teaching and school governance, has joined the National Alliance as a senior advisor with a focus on school support. George spent 30 years as a math teacher and educator in the District of Columbia Public Schools. For six years, he served as president of the Washington Teachers’ Union. Prior to joining the National Alliance, George worked with the StudentsFirst Institute as a senior fellow to successfully impact education reform nationally. He is a first-generation college graduate, having received his Bachelor of Science degree in mathematics from North Carolina Central University and a Master of Science degree in school administration from Trinity University.

Mike Sullivan
Principal, Goldberg Kohn

Mike Sullivan, Principal, Goldberg KohnMichael Sullivan is chair of the firm's Labor & Employment Group and a principal in the firm's Litigation Group. He currently serves on the firm’s Management Committee and has also served on the Compensation Committee. He advises employers, lenders, and business executives on a variety of labor and employment and litigation issues. Mr. Sullivan has a wide spectrum of experience advising employers with respect to their labor and employment policies and practices and defending them in disputes with their employees. He also has broad experience litigating business disputes, including those involving allegations of restrictive covenants, fraud, defamation, and other torts, contractual obligations, lender liability, bankruptcy, and workout issues. Mr. Sullivan's practice increasingly focuses on emergency disputes, including temporary restraining orders, injunctions, picketing, and other time-sensitive proceedings.

Meredith Kirshenbaum
Principal, Goldberg Kohn

Meredith Kirshenbaum, Principal, Goldberg KohnMeredith Kirshenbaum is a principal in the firm's Litigation Group. Ms. Kirshenbaum has experience litigating cases involving labor and employment law, commercial contract disputes, false claims act litigation, and real estate disputes and is trained in employee benefits (ERISA) law. Ms. Kirshenbaum's traditional labor law experience includes representing employers in unfair labor practice charges and other matters pending before the National Labor Relations Board, counseling employers during union organizing campaigns, defending employer interests throughout the union-election process and negotiating union contracts. Ms. Kirshenbaum devotes a considerable portion of her practice to representing and advising charter schools. Ms. Kirshenbaum provides charter schools counsel in a wide range of areas including traditional labor law, employment law, charter applications, contract negotiations, state commission appeals, and school policies. Recent speaking engagements include a session on labor law developments and charter schools at the Alliance of Public Charter School Attorneys Conference, a webinar presentation on labor law for the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, as well as several presentations for the Illinois Network of Charter Schools, including a presentation at the Charter School Leader Summit.

Robert Escalante
General Counsel, Alliance College Ready Public Schools

As General Counsel, Robert Escalante is responsible for overseeing differing levels of legal affairs. Prior to his current role, Robert worked as an attorney for Proskauer Rose LLP. There, Robert represented and advised clients from a variety of industries in class and collective actions, labor, and employment litigation, as well as conducted investigations and provided pro bono services to clients in probate, immigration, administrative, and federal court proceedings. Prior to working with Proskauer, Robert volunteered as an attorney with the Eviction Defense Unit of the Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles. Robert holds a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Michigan Law School and a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Southern California.


Peri Lynn Turnbull
Advisor, National Alliance for Public Charter Schools

Peri Lynn Turnball, Advisor, National Alliance for Public Charter SchoolsPeri Lynn Turnbull is a seasoned strategist with extensive experience advising CEOs, Boards of Directors, and other senior leaders of local, state, and national organizations. A sought-after thought leader, she brings years of crisis-management experience and proven results in developing advocacy and communications initiatives for social change. Her specialty is driving organizational change by identifying and bridging the gap between an organization’s public brand and internal priorities, allocated resources, and culture through realignment with its mission.

These free webinars were available to CSDC School and Authorizer Members only, and were not available to CSDC Vendor Members.

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