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Chapter 11. Special Programs. Subchapter 19. Charter Schools. General Provisions. Submission of Statewide Benefit Charter School Petitions and Amendments to the State Board of Education.   

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(a) A petition to establish a statewide benefit charter school pursuant to Education Code section 47605.8 shall:

(1) Comply with all statutory requirements otherwise applicable to charter schools, except those relating to geographic and site limitations (See Education Code section 47605.8).

(2) If applicable, comply with all requirements of law relative to the provision of independent study.

(A) A charter that does not expressly provide for independent study shall not be interpreted as allowing independent study beyond that which is incidental and required to address the temporary needs of particular students.

(B) If the independent study (nonclassroom-based instruction) exceeds the percentage specified in Education Code section 47612.5, it shall be funded only in keeping with a determination of funding approved pursuant to Education Code section 47634.2.

(3) Describe how an annual independent audit of the statewide benefit charter school will be conducted in keeping with applicable statute and regulation and indicate how the statewide benefit charter school's individual schools will be appropriately included in the audit process.

(4) Incorporate a plan that provides for initial commencement of instruction in at least two schools, which shall be in at least two different school districts or two different counties. The plan for instruction shall describe how the instructional services will provide a statewide benefit, as specified in section 11967.6(b) that cannot be provided by a charter school operating in only one school district, or only in one county. Existing charter schools previously approved by a charter authorizer may not be included in a petition to establish a statewide benefit charter school.

(5) Include an assurance that the instructional services for similar student populations described in the charter will be essentially similar at each school and, thus, that each pupil's educational experience will be reasonably the same with regard to instructional methods, instructional materials, staffing configuration, personnel requirements, course offerings, and class schedules.

(6) Describe how the statewide benefit charter school will participate as a member of a special education local plan area, and ensure a coordinated structure for the provision of necessary programs and services specific to students with individualized education programs (IEPs).

(7) Demonstrate success in operating charter schools previously approved in California as evidenced by improved pupil academic performance and annual financial audits with no audit findings or exceptions. Data that shall be considered in determining the likelihood of a charter operator to successfully operate a statewide benefit charter school include, but are not limited to, a statewide or similar schools ranking of 8 or higher on the Academic Performance Index, evidence of having met growth targets over time, and other alternative indicators of success as defined in the alternative accountability system pursuant to subdivision (h) of Education Code section 52052.

(8) Describe how local community input for each school included in the plan was solicited (or will be solicited). Satisfaction of this paragraph shall involve the holding of at least one publicly noticed meeting for each school, with a summary of the input received at the meeting(s) being provided to the State Board of Education (SBE).

(9) Contain sufficient signatures either of parents, guardians, or of teachers in keeping with Education Code section 47605(a)(1) for each school proposed in the first year.

(10) Address all charter elements specified in Education Code section 47605 adapted appropriately for application at the statewide level.

(11) Contain or address any provisions or conditions specified by the SBE at the time of charter approval.

(12) Contain a plan for operations of the statewide benefit charter school that describes the distinction between centralized and individual school level responsibilities and includes a staffing plan to implement the activities at the designated level. This plan shall be a part of the petition as initially approved by the SBE. If amendments to the plan are proposed, these amendments must be submitted to the SBE for approval. The plan shall address statewide benefit charter school operations including, but not limited to:

(A) Academic program,

(B) Facilities and school operations,

(C) Legal and programmatic compliance,

(D) Financial administration,

(E) Governance, and

(F) Decision-making authority.

(13) Provide a list that includes each school the statewide benefit charter school proposes to operate. This list shall be a part of the petition as initially approved by the SBE. This list shall include:

(A) A timeline for the commencement of instruction at each school. Commencement of instruction must begin during the term of the charter.

(B) The general location of each school and the school district and county in which each school is to be located.

(C) A description of the potential facilities to be used at each school.

(D) The approximate number of pupils that can safely be accommodated by each school facility.

(b) "Instructional services of a statewide benefit", as referenced in Education Code section 47605.8(b), shall include, but not be limited to, the following factors:

(1) Unique factors and circumstances related to the statewide benefit charter school's educational program that can only be accomplished as a statewide benefit charter and not as a single district- or single county-authorized charter, including specific benefits to each of the following:

(A) The pupils who would attend the statewide benefit charter school,

(B) The communities (including the school districts and the counties) in which the individual schools would be located (e.g., in terms of pupil demographics and performance),

(C) The state, to the extent applicable, and

(D) The statewide benefit charter school itself (e.g., in fund raising, community partnerships, or relationships with institutions of higher education).

(2) Neither an administrative benefit to a charter operator, nor a desire by a charter operator to provide services in more than one district and county, shall be considered sufficient in and of itself to constitute a statewide benefit.

(c) A statewide benefit charter school, regardless of the number of individual schools, is treated as a school district for all purposes, including but not limited to, compliance monitoring, data reporting and collection, student performance data, oversight, and apportionments. For purposes of compliance monitoring and oversight, the SBE, in its review, will look at each individual school's independent progress in meeting federal and state growth targets.

(d) Following its submission, a petition to establish a statewide benefit charter school may be modified or new schools added that were not included in the original petition only with the approval of the SBE.

(e) Each statewide benefit charter school shall provide an annual report to the SBE reflecting student achievement data, performance benchmarks, and other pertinent data supporting stated charter goals.

Authority cited:

Education Code 33031

Education Code 47605.8

Reference:

Education Code 47605

Education Code 47605.8

Education Code 47612.5

Education Code 47634.2

(Amended by Register 2010, No. 34.)