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Renewal Cautions — and a Tier 1 Learning Opportunity with NCUST

Jan 20 2022

CSDC strongly encourages charter schools serving students most affected by the pandemic to plan a charter renewal strategy, including taking advantage of aligned professional learning opportunities. This article announces a grant-funded learning opportunity from the National Center for Urban School Transformation (NCUST) on strengthening Tier 1 instructional practices. Robust Tier 1 supports are foundational to learning acceleration. CSDC was pleased that NCUST was able to present at CSDC’s 2021 Leadership Update Conference as a late session addition. Due to pre-selection of sessions, for COVID safety reasons, some attendees missed that opportunity to learn about NCUST’s compelling professional learning opportunities for urban school leaders.
 
Accelerating learning recovery is a priority for all schools impacted by the pandemic, but for charter schools, learning recovery carries additional significance. For most charter schools, charter renewal hinges partly on comparisons of school performance to average performance in California. Denial is likely for charter schools that do not exceed, for the most part, state averages on specified indicators on the California School Dashboard. CSDC members can access support resources and contact us for free personalized support.
 
California schools serving elementary grade levels and higher-than-average concentrations of Economically Disadvantaged students, English Learners, and/or Students with Disabilities are likelier to score lower than California averages in the coming years. The more student performance fell during the pandemic, compared to the state average, the longer it may take to recover. Such charter schools will need to recover more quickly than California schools overall. To bolster renewal prospects, CSDC strongly recommends that charter schools conduct close analysis of their historical outcomes with respect to renewal standards and, in response to that analysis, implement strategic actions, perhaps including transformative professional learning experiences such as NCUST support.
 
Strong Tier 1 supports are associated with improved student outcomes. In addition, schools that meet students’ needs through universal supports also tend to significantly lower the number of students needing Tier II and III supports, including special education services. Shifting away from special education can free up valuable time and money for direct student service.
 
This series, Strengthening Tier I Instructional Practices to Eliminate Disproportionality and Promote Equity in Schools, offers webinar-based trainings and personalized coaching sessions. Sessions include presentations by award-winning school practitioners. The collaboration with NCUST is hosted by the San Diego South County SELPA’s Equity, Disproportionality, and Design project team as part of the Statewide System of Support Network, with CDE funding. The next session is Tuesday, January 25, 3:00-5:00PM.
 
Housed at San Diego State University, NCUST also offers high quality fee-based supports for school leaders and school network leaders, with job-embedded support from experienced practitioners as part of a like-minded cohort. Interested in accelerating learning in a particular area? NCUST can help connect schools with similar interests.