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Charter Board Partners

Effective Boards, Schools: Good for Politics & Kids

July 11, 2018 | by Carrie C. Irvin
The CBP Team

The CBP team had a great few days at the National Charter Schools Conference in Austin, Texas, last month, where we spoke with hundreds of conference attendees who recognize and care about the fundamental role of charter school governance in the infrastructure of the charter sector.   

The political context around charter schools and reform feels fraught. We believe that doubling down on accountability across the sector is essential: expand great charter schools, open more of them, and close bad ones, all while focusing efforts on the students who most need access to good schools. Accountability lies first at the school level—that’s one of the key differences between charters and traditional public schools. And school-level accountability lies foremost with charter school boards.

Bad charter school boards drag down charter schools. And bad charter schools bring down the whole sector. That’s not good politically, and it’s not good for kids. We are heartened to see such a deep commitment by many individuals and organizations across the sector to effective boards that hold schools accountable.

This strong belief that boards are a powerful lever to improve accountability, quality, and equity is why our entire team attended this year’s conference. It’s why we were selected to participate in a number of presentations on boards (Fighting Founder's Syndrome: How to Build a School that Can Outlive You; Increasing Latino Representation on Boards: A Solvable Problem; 50 Ways to Lose Your Leader: What Leaders Need from Boards to Survive and Thrive; I’ve Got the Governance Blues; and Charter Board 101). And it’s why we are grateful for the many calls we have been getting from schools, authorizers, funders, and support organizations around the country.


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