Maine Charter School Commission Meeting - June 11, 2012

Minutes

The State Charter School Commission held a meeting on June 11, 2012, at the Cross State Office Building, 111 Sewall Street, Augusta, Maine. The following members were present: James Banks, Sr.; Richard (Dick) Barnes; Lynda Doyle; Jana Lapoint; Shelley Reed; and William Shuttleworth.

 

Excused: Donald Mordecai

 

CALLED TO ORDER:

Chair, James A. Banks, Sr. called the meeting to order at 11:05 AM.

 

ADJUSTMENT TO THE AGENDA :

  1. Review Commission members calendars in regards to dates/locations of upcoming interviews and public hearings.
  2. Remove recommendation for Maine Academy of Natural Sciences as they were voted to move forward in review process at June 7, 2012 meeting.
  3. Letter from Amy Carlisle (attached) of Maine Virtual Academy requesting a hearing – put on an upcoming agenda. 
  4. James Banks has been in contact with SchoolWorks and the National Association of Charter School Authorizers to provide training.
 

OFFICER'S REPORTS:

Chair, James Banks, Sr.

  • James Banks and William Shuttleworth will be meeting with State Purchases staff, Jennifer Pooler and Valerie Seaberg from DOE later today to discuss the contract process (for training and for staff for the Commission) and what options are available to the Commission.

Vice-chair, William Shuttleworth

  • Would like to see the upcoming calendar on the agenda.
  • Is it possible to move the public comment portion of the meeting to the beginning of the meeting to accommodate busy schedules?

 

NEW BUSINESS:

  1. Recommendations by review teams –  
    1. Cornville Regional Charter School - Jana Lapoint, review team chair
  2. “It is our recommendation that the Cornville be allowed to move forward to the next step.  We have looked thoroughly at their application at this point I would like to say publically that what they will need to do to present to us at the next phase in this would be that we need to see that they would be able to show us that a school that is bringing together children who have now been all separated into schools in the area where your curriculum will show us that there is a better program that you are going to offer at that school than those that the children are currently receiving  in their local districts.  The fact that we have schools all over the state that are closing all the time and we recognize that and do we want to be positive when it comes to the rural schools, we absolutely do, but we need to see beyond what you’ve shown in your application that there will be more there, and that it will be more unique, than what they are currently getting in a public school situation.  Your budget looks wonderful; we are really impressed with how much fundraising you’ve already done.  The advisory group that you’ve already put together was absolutely tremendous.  There are going to be other questions that we have, and we’re learning the hard way that we can’t just call you on the phone.  If we had a director, the director would have been able, ahead of time to talk with every applicant, so now we’re getting in the position that’s not going to happen and we have to have a public hearing, so if you get the questions out at an open meeting whether you like what you hear or not, that’s going to be something you’re going to have to answer.  So that’s what we would say, so we would like to make a motion that at this time Cornville be allowed to move to the next step.”

     Discussion -

     

    MOVED by Jana Lapoint, seconded by Lynda Doyle, and voted in the affirmative by five of those present to move the Cornville Regional Charter School application to the next step; 1 abstention. 

 
OLD BUSINESS:
  1. In Person Interview and Public Hearing

    • Jana Lapoint is checking on the availability of the Education and Cultural Affairs Committee for the June 18 interviews and public hearings for Baxter Academy of Technology and Science and Cornville Regional Charter School.

      • Baxter at 9:00am-12pm

      • Cornville at 1:00pm-4pm

    • Address sustainability; funding and enrollment

    • Impact on RSUs in the area of the charter

    • Looking for unique model of delivering services, clear evidence of assessment targets

    • Declining enrollment – looking for 10 year forecast

    • Limit public comment to three minutes

    • Allow written comment to be received for five days after the public hearing is held

  1. Verified date and location of Maine Academy of Natural Sciences public hearing and interview

    • June 15, 9am-12pm in room 103A & B

  1. Brief recess (11:45am-11:55am) for Jana Lapoint to check on the Ed Committee room for June 18

ANNOUNCEMENTS:

  • Turn in Expense Account Vouchers at the end of the meeting.

PUBLIC COMMENT:

  • Concern that the public hearing needs to allow for a brief presentation or handout from the applicant prior to comments being accepted.
  • Peter Mills – spoke in favor of Maine Virtual Academy
  • Glen Cummings – thanks for all you have done
  • Ed LeBlanc – spoke in favor of Maine Virtual Academy

ADJOURNMENT:

MOVED by Shelley Reed, seconded by Jana Lapoint, and unanimously voted by those present to adjourn the June 11, 2012 State Charter School Commission meeting at 12:33 PM.

 

Transcribed by Jennifer Pooler.