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Charter Schools Procedural Directive

Contents

Authority of Albuquerque Public Schools as an Authorizer
Charter/Magnet School Department
Presentations to the Board of Education
Initial Applications
Planning Year
Renewal Applications
Amendments
Assistance Provided by Albuquerque Public Schools

Mandated Assistance
Additional Assistance
Negotiated Assistance

Access to Albuquerque Public Schools
Activities
Facilities
Capital Master Plan
Reporting Requirements
Finances
Budget
Employees
Oversight of Charter Schools
Dispute Resolution
Suspension of a Locally Authorized Charter School
Revocation of a Charter of a Locally Authorized Charter School
Appeals
Definitions


Authority of Albuquerque Public Schools as an Authorizer

A locally authorized charter school shall be a public school accredited by the New Mexico Public Education Department and shall be accountable to the Board of Education for purposes of ensuring compliance with applicable laws, rules and charter provisions.  The Board of Education may waive only locally imposed school district requirements for locally chartered charter schools.

Charter/Magnet School Department

Albuquerque Public Schools shall maintain a Charter/Magnet School Department.  The Charter/Magnet School Department shall be the primary contact and administrative office responsible for communication and operations with locally authorized charter schools.  The Charter/Magnet School Department shall have the following responsibilities:

  • Collect, organize, review, evaluate all information related to locally authorized charter school approval and renewal
  • Prepare and present all proposed actions related to locally authorized charter schools for superintendent and Board of Education approval
  • Organize and implement all locally authorized charter school accountability visits, including annual site visits, follow-up visits related to audit findings, site visit findings, whistle blower communication, or requests from the Board of Education, superintendent and the state of New Mexico
  • Work with all Albuquerque Public Schools departments regarding any services provided to charter schools whether free of charge or at some negotiated cost to the charter school
  • Provide regular reports and updates to the superintendent and the Board of Education on all proposed and locally authorized charter schools
  • Coordinate all requests for assistance and information from, to, or about both locally authorized and state authorized charter schools
  • Coordinate a meeting at least biannually with all relevant district departments to discuss charter school issues and report those issues to the Superintendent and then to the Board of Education

Albuquerque Public Schools personnel who are assigned duties with locally authorized charter schools may include:

  • Albuquerque Public Schools charter /Magnet Schools director who manages Charter/Magnet Schools Department operations and supervises personnel housed in the department and who reports to the assistant superintendent for student and community support services
    • The Charter/Magnet Schools director shall be involved in any decision making process regarding charter schools by any department in the district
  • Albuquerque Public Schools charter school manager/coordinator with educational administration and curriculum experience who reports to and is supervised by the Charter/Magnet Schools director
  • Albuquerque Public Schools charter school coordinator with charter school experience who reports to and is supervised by the Charter/Magnet Schools director
  • Albuquerque Public Schools charter school business manager who will review and coordinate finance and budget of locally authorized charter schools, and who reports to and is supervised by the executive director of Accounting but will also communicate with and provide all information regarding charter schools to the Charter/Magnet Schools director
  • Albuquerque Public Schools charter school special education instructional manager who will review services and coordinate support in special education for locally authorized charter schools, and who reports to and is supervised by the executive director of Special Education but will also communicate with and provide all information regarding charter schools to the Charter/Magnet Schools director
  • Albuquerque Public Schools STARS coordinator who will collect and review required data submitted by a locally authorized charter schools who reports to and is supervised by the director of Student Information Services but will also communicate with and provide all information regarding locally authorized charter schools to the Charter/Magnet School director.
  • Albuquerque Public Schools Title I/grants coordinator who will review and coordinate support for Title I funds and grants in locally authorized charter schools, and who reports to and is supervised by the Title I director but will also communicate with and provide all information regarding charter schools to the Charter/Magnet Schools director
  • Personnel from Albuquerque Public Schools Operations, including Facilities Design and Construction, Maintenance and Operations and Transportation, who will supervise and coordinate support for applicable operations of locally authorized charter schools, and who report to and are supervised by their respective department directors but will also communicate with and provide all information regarding charter schools to the Charter/Magnet Schools director

The Charter/Magnet Schools director may request additional support from other Albuquerque Public Schools departments if necessary and approved by the assistant superintendent for student and community support.  The Charter/Magnet Schools director shall be advised of all visits to and contact made with charter schools by an Albuquerque Public Schools department and shall be copied on all reports pertaining to charter schools.

Presentations to the Board of Education

The Charter/Magnet Schools director shall provide specific data to the Board of Education at all presentations regarding locally authorized charter schools.  If the presentation concerns one locally authorized charter school, the Charter/Magnet Schools director shall provide the information for the specific locally authorized charter school for which the presentation regards.  The Charter/Magnet Schools director may seek assistance from the Research, Deployment and Accountability for the information.

The presentation data shall include:

  • Adequate Yearly Progress status reports
  • New Mexico Standards Based Assessment scores
  • Demographic information of students enrolled in the school according to No Child Left Behind categories
  • A comparison of the data above to a peer traditional school in Albuquerque Public Schools

Initial Applications

Albuquerque Public Schools shall receive all applications for potential locally authorized charter schools. The organizers of a proposed charter school shall provide written notification to the Board of Education and the Charter/Magnet School Department of the intent to establish a charter school within the district at least one hundred eighty (180) days prior to initial application.  The Charter/Magnet School Department shall only accept applications for proposed charter schools if this notification was received in the appropriate time frame.  If organizers provide written notification of the intent to establish a charter school less than one-hundred eighty (180) days prior to initial application, the Board of Education may allow the organizers to send a letter setting forth good reason why the notification was received late.  The application for a proposed charter school shall be submitted to the Charter/Magnet School Department on or before July 1 to be eligible for consideration for the following fiscal year, or on the first business day immediately following if July 1 falls on a weekend.  This date may be waived upon mutual agreement between the applicant and the Board of Education.  A charter school shall only be eligible for establishment during the following fiscal year if the application was received on or before July 1, or on the first business day immediately following if July 1 falls on a weekend.  The “following” fiscal year is the fiscal year beginning in the next calendar year after the application is received.  The Board of Education shall delay the establishment of the charter school by one year if the application is received after July 1.

The Charter/Magnet School Department shall receive all applications regardless of the date of application submission, unless the organizers did not provide written notification to the Board of Education and the Charter/Magnet School Department at least one hundred eighty (180) days prior to the initial application.

The Charter/Magnet School Department shall review applications and determine if requirements established by federal and state statute and district standards outlined in this procedural directive have been met.  Applications shall include all requirements outlined in state statute in addition to the following:

  • Name and location of proposed charter school
  • Mission statement
  • Educational philosophy and approach
  • Total number of grades provided, either immediately or phased in
  • Educational Plan for Student Success
  • Description of unique programs and educational opportunities provided by the applicant 
  • Financial plan
  • Governance and management plan
  • How the proposed facility currently meets or will meet New Mexico State Adequacy Standards for Educational Buildings by the end of its planning year
  • Detailed description of capital outlay needs
  • Requests for capital outlay assistance
  • The governing body’s Open Meetings Act Resolution with a provision that it must be renewed annually
  • Statement of Assurance that all governing body members have read the completed application
  • Insurance coverage for liability and property damage
  • List of any waivers that will be requested
  • Personnel policies and procedures
  • Student discipline policies and procedures
  • Complete Form 910B5

The Charter/Magnet School Department reserves the right to request and shall receive additional information from the applicant if it deems it necessary.  The Charter/Magnet School Department shall only submit an application for Board of Education consideration if the application was timely submitted and it meets all requirements outlined in this procedural directive.  The Charter/Magnet School Department shall make a recommendation regarding the application of a charter school to the Board of Education within thirty (30) days of receiving the application.  The Charter/Magnet School Department may recommend the application be approved by the Board of Education only if it has met all federal, state and district requirements. If an application has not met federal, state and district requirements, or needs clarification, the Charter/Magnet School Department may recommend the application be approved with conditions or denied by the Board of Education.

The Board of Education shall hold a public hearing to obtain community input regarding the application.  A decision for approval, approval with conditions or denial of an application shall be rendered by the Board of Education in a public meeting within sixty (60) days of receipt of an application.   The Board of Education may approve an applicant for an initial term of six years.  The first of these six years shall be used exclusively for planning and not completing the application.

The Board of Education may deny an application of a charter school under the following circumstances:

  • The application is incomplete or inadequate
  • The application does not propose to offer an educational program consistent with the requirements and purposes of the Charter School Act
  • The proposed head administrator or other administrative or fiscal staff member was involved with another charter school whose charter was denied or revoked for fiscal mismanagement or the proposed head administrator or other administrative or fiscal staff member was discharged from a public school for fiscal mismanagement
  • The application is otherwise contrary to the best interests of the charter school's projected students, the local community or Albuquerque Public Schools as determined by the Board of Education
    • The best interests of Albuquerque Public Schools may include compliance of all requirements outlined in this procedural directive and such other considerations as the Board of Education deems appropriate

The Board of Education shall provide written notification of its decision regarding an application to the applicant within fourteen (14) days of the decision.  The governing body of a charter school may appeal the Board of Education’s decision as outlined in New Mexico state statutes.

Planning Year

Locally authorized charter schools authorized on or after May 19, 2010 shall report progress to the Board of Education and the Charter/Magnet School Department at least three times during their planning year.  These reports shall include, but are not limited to:

  • Progress report on all items included in the initial application
  • Any information specifically requested by the Board of Education, superintendent or Charter/Magnet School Department
  • Any information deemed appropriate or necessary by the governing body of the locally authorized charter school

These reports shall be submitted to the Charter/Magnet School Department by December 30, March 30 and June 30.  The Board of Education and Charter/Magnet School Department reserve the right to request and receive informational reports from a locally authorized charter school at any other time during their planning year.  The Charter/Magnet School Department shall deliver this report to the Board of Education.

Renewal Applications

Locally authorized charter schools may apply for renewal of their charter with the Board of Education.  The Charter/Magnet School Department shall notify locally authorized charter schools of this option in their last year of approval.  Locally authorized charter schools shall submit applications for renewal to the Charter/Magnet School Department no later than two hundred seventy (270) days prior to June 30 of the year in which the current charter expires.

The Charter/Magnet School Department shall review renewal applications and determine if requirements established by federal and state statutes and district standards outlined in this procedural directive have been met.  The Board of Education shall only approve a renewal application if these requirements have been met.  A renewal application shall include:

  • Name and location of proposed charter school
  • Mission statement
  • Educational philosophy and approach
  • Educational plan
  • Total number of grades provided, either immediately or phased in
  • Financial plan
  • Governance and management plan
  • Description of facilities and assurances that facilities meet New Mexico State Adequacy Standards for Educational Buildings
  • A statement of agreement to participate in the funding provided by the Albuquerque Public Schools capital master plan and agree to the terms outlined in the “Capital Master Plan” section of this procedural directive
  • Detailed description of capital outlay needs
  • Requests for capital outlay assistance
  • Description of unique programs and educational opportunities provided by the charter school 
  • Report on progress of achieving educational goals, objectives, student performance standards and state minimum educational standards
  • Report on progress of achieving school-level or organizational goals identified in the current contract
  • Report on achieving accountability requirements in the Assessment and Accountability Act (§22-2C-1 NMSA 1978)
  • Financial statements that disclose the cost of administration, instruction and other spending categories for the locally authorized charter school that is understandable to the general public, that allows comparison of cost to other schools or comparable organizations and that is in a format required by the New Mexico Public Education Department
  • Copy of audits conducted in the previous five years, relevant findings and the locally authorized charter school’s response to the findings
  • Petition in support of the locally authorized charter school signed by at least sixty-five percent (65%) of employees in the locally authorized charter school
  • Petition in support of the locally authorized charter school signed by at least seventy-five percent (75%) of the households of children enrolled in the charter school
  • Term of renewal if less than five (5) years
  • Proposed-changes document which specifies the changes requested for the renewal term of the charter
  • The governing body’s Open Meetings Act Resolution with a provision that it must be renewed annually
  • Statement of Assurance that all governing body members have read the completed application
  • Insurance coverage for liability and property damage
  • List of any waivers that will be requested
  • Personnel policies and procedures
  • Student discipline policies and procedures

The Charter/Magnet School Department reserves the right to request and receive additional information from the renewal applicant if it deems it necessary.  The Charter/Magnet School Department shall make a recommendation regarding the renewal application of a charter school to the Board of Education within sixty (60) days of receiving the renewal application.   The Charter/Magnet School Department may recommend the application be approved by the Board of Education only if it has met all federal, state and district requirements. If an application has not met federal, state and district requirements, or needs clarification, the Charter/Magnet School Department may recommend the application be approved with conditions or denied by the Board of Education.

A decision for approval, approval with conditions or denial of a renewal application shall be rendered by the Board of Education in a public meeting within ninety (90) days of receipt of a renewal application, or no later than one hundred eighty (180) days prior to the expiration of the contract.    If appropriate, the Board of Education may renew a locally authorized charter school for a period of five (5) years.  The Board of Education and the governing body of the charter school may agree to an approval of less than five (5) years.

The Board of Education may deny a renewal application if the Board of Education determines that that the locally authorized charter school committed any of the follow actions:

  • Violated any condition, standard or procedure in the contract agreed upon by both the Board of Education and the governing body of the charter school
  • Failed to meet or make substantial progress toward achievement of minimum education standards or student performance standards identified in the initial application
  • Failed to meet generally accepted standards of fiscal management, including proper reporting of finances when requested by the Board of Education
  • Violated any federal or state law from which the locally authorized charter school was not specifically exempted
  • Failed to meet New Mexico Adequacy Standards for Educational Buildings 
  • Violated any district policy or procedural directive 
  • Fails to comply with all requirements outlined in this procedural directive 
  • Such other considerations as the Board of Education deems appropriate

The Board of Education shall provide written notification of its decision regarding an application to the applicant within fourteen (14) days of the decision.  The governing body of the charter school may appeal the Board of Education’s decisions as outlined in the New Mexico state statute.

Amendments

A locally authorized charter school may alter its original charter during an authorization period.  Any revision or amendment to the terms of the charter shall be made only with the approval of the Board of Education and the governing body of the locally authorized charter school.  A locally authorized charter school shall apply for an amendment to its original approved charter for approval by the Board of Education for the following:

  • Increase in the total number of grades provided
  • Increase in the total number of students served in each grade
  • Change in location and or/facilities, even if that change in location is planned to meet New Mexico Adequacy Standards for Educational Buildings
  • Any change in operations, management, ideology or practices from the original contract

Assistance Provided by Albuquerque Public Schools

Locally authorized charter schools may request or negotiate assistance from Albuquerque Public Schools for services.  Locally authorized charter schools shall submit all requests in writing to the Charter/Magnet School Department.  The Charter/Magnet School Department shall contact the appropriate district department to gather information for the locally authorized charter school concerning either the district’s ability to provide the service or alternatives that the locally authorized charter school may pursue.  The locally authorized charter school may contact the district department once the Charter/Magnet School Department has gathered information.  The Charter/Magnet School Department shall follow up on in a timely manner on the status of requests submitted..  Assistance provided by Albuquerque Public Schools may be required by law, voluntarily provided, or negotiated between Albuquerque Public Schools and the locally authorized charter school.

Mandated Assistance

Albuquerque Public Schools shall include locally authorized charter schools in the district’s application for all entitlement federal funds for which the charter has eligible students and any other federal funds that require inclusion of locally authorized charter schools.  Inclusion of locally authorized charter schools in federal competitive grants may be optional as per the requirements of the grant.  The locally authorized charter school shall meet the same requirements for accessing the federal funds as all other Albuquerque Public Schools.

Albuquerque Public Schools shall provide a locally authorized charter school with one of its facilities if that facility is not used for other educational purposes.  Refer to the “Facilities” section of this procedural directive for more information regarding facilities use.

Additional Assistance

Albuquerque Public Schools may provide, dependent on available resources and ability, the following assistance to locally authorized charter schools:

  • STARS training 
  • Training the district has already created and is currently conducting for appropriate areas and staff
  • Advertisement on the Albuquerque Public Schools website for job vacancies
  • Provide links to locally authorized charter school websites on the Albuquerque Public Schools website
  • Training and assistance for renewal and application processes
  • Title I training, information and evaluation
  • Access to staff in the Charter/Magnet School Department as a resource for general knowledge, concerns and services
  • Activities participation and information.  Refer to the “Activities” section of this procedural directive for more information regarding activities.
  • Information, annual site visits and reviews for financial management which may include internal audit assistance.  Refer to the “Finances” section of this procedural directive for more information regarding finances.
  • Inclusion in the Capital Master Plan.  Refer to the “Facilities” section of this procedural directive for more information regarding facilities use
  • Summer programs
  • Inclusion in district newsletters and press releases
  • Support and information in curriculum and instruction
  • Information regarding educational research and accountability
  • Review of Educational Plan for Student Success and Web-Educational Plan for Student Success training
  • Information and assistance concerning grant eligibility
  • Inclusion of Native American students attending locally authorized charter schools in Native American Education programs for which the student generates funds
  • Access to the Albuquerque Public Schools whistleblower services and investigations as outlined in the Internal Audit procedural directive
  • Information regarding school safety and limited investigations for incidents
  • Access to Albuquerque Public Schools Equal Employment Opportunity Commission for filing complaints regarding equal employment

Negotiated Assistance

Albuquerque Public Schools may negotiate with locally authorized charter schools to provide goods, services, and/or cooperative efforts.  Any negotiated agreement made between Albuquerque Public Schools and the locally authorized charter school shall be included in the charter school’s charter with the district or through a memorandum of understanding.  These negotiated services shall be provided by the district at a reasonable cost mutually agreed upon by the Board of Education and the governing body of the locally authorized charter school.

These negotiated services may include, but are not limited to:

  • Use of Albuquerque Public Schools facilities.  Refer to the “Facilities” section of this procedural directive for more information regarding facilities use  
  • Financial management assistance and support.  Please refer to the “Finances” section of this procedural directive for more information regarding finances.
  • Food services
  • Custodial Services
  • Maintenance
  • Library services
  • Media Services
  • Warehousing
  • Transportation Services
  • Background checks and fingerprinting
  • Graphics production and printing
  • Internet infrastructure and assistance
  • Online courses that are developed and provided by Albuquerque Public Schools

In the event the Charter/Magnet Schools Department begins negotiations for assistance, it shall include the Albuquerque Public Schools department that will be responsible for providing the negotiated assistance to the locally authorized charter school in all negotiations.  In the event an Albuquerque Public Schools Department responsible for providing the negotiated assistance begins negotiations for assistance, it shall include the Charter Magnet Schools department in all negotiations. Any and all negotiated assistance provided to a locally authorized charter school shall be contingent on the approval of the department that will be responsible for providing the negotiated assistance.

All negotiated assistance shall be reviewed by the chief financial officer, or his/her designee, to determine the fiscal impact on the district and the ability of the district to provide such assistance financially.

Access to Albuquerque Public Schools

Both locally authorized and state authorized charter schools shall follow the process outlined in the “Release of Information to Post-Secondary Recruiters and School Campus Visits” procedural directive to access all Albuquerque Public School campuses for recruitment visits.  Albuquerque Public Schools shall not grant any charter school access to students for recruitment during the instructional day.

A charter school may request the use of a school facility to hold a recruitment session after the instructional day.  Any request to use a school facility from a charter school shall follow the process and requirements outlined in the “Facilities Usage” procedural directive.

Albuquerque Public Schools and its employees may release student directory information to charter schools in compliance with New Mexico state statute. 

Activities

Albuquerque Public Schools, in consultation with the New Mexico Activities Association, shall permit all charter school students in grades seven through twelve to participate in district extracurricular activities sanctioned by the New Mexico Activities Association if the student meets eligibility requirements other than enrollment in a particular public school and if the charter school does not offer such activities sanctioned by the New Mexico Activities Association or any other association.  A charter school student eligible to participate in extracurricular activities shall participate in the Albuquerque Public School assigned to the student based on attendance boundary zones.

An eligible charter school student who intends to participate in district extracurricular activities shall contact the Charter/Magnet School Department.  The Charter/Magnet School Department shall document the student’s name, the charter school he/she attends and the Albuquerque Public School assigned to the student based on the attendance boundary zones.  The Charter/Magnet School Department shall instruct the student to contact the Albuquerque Public Schools Student, School and Community Service Center.

Upon contact made by the charter school student, the Albuquerque Public Schools Student, School and Community Service Center shall:

  • Notify the student in which school boundary zone he/she resides in
  • Gather the student’s eligibility information
  • Provide the student with the High School/Middle School Athletic/Extra-Curricular Participation Form or direct them to the location where it can be found
  • Refer the student to the school in which the school boundary zone he/she resides 
  • Forward the student’s inquiry and information to the appropriate school ‘s principal, athletic director and activities director

The Albuquerque Public School that has a charter school student residing in its attendance boundary zone who intends to participate in extracurricular activities shall permit the charter school student to participate.  The Albuquerque Public School shall:

  • Confirm the charter school student’s residence
  • Comply with all activities and athletic requirements

Facilities

Albuquerque Public Schools and locally authorized charter schools shall comply with all applicable federal and state statutes regarding facilities.  Acceptable use, maintenance, and accessibility of Albuquerque Public Schools’ facilities shall be included in the charter school contract with the district.  District facilities used by locally authorized charter schools shall meet all New Mexico Adequacy Standards for Educational Buildings.  Albuquerque Public Schools may provide facilities space to a locally authorized charter school if and only if:   

  • Space can be made available at no cost to the district
  • A permanent structure owned and operated by the district has rooms not required to serve other educational purposes of Albuquerque Public Schools
  • Space and/or facility shall be determined on a school campus after the facility has been subject to the “Determination of Utilization and Capacity” procedural directive.

If a locally authorized charter school is placed in a district facility, the locally authorized charter school shall be responsible for a reasonable lease payment as agreed upon between the Board of Education and the governing body of the locally authorized charter school and outlined in the contract.  The district shall retain any lease payment received from a locally authorized charter school and shall not consider lease payments as cash balances.  Locally authorized charter schools housed in district facilities may contract with the district to provide facility operation and maintenance services if the terms of the contract are mutually agreed upon by both the Board of Education and the governing body of the locally authorized charter school.

Locally authorized charter schools shall not operate a single charter school in separate facilities at two or more locations within the district unless such operation approved by the Board of Education during the initial application process, the renewal process or by amendment.

Locally authorized charter schools approved by the Board of Education on or after July 1, 2005 and before July 1, 2015 shall meet occupancy standards of the New Mexico Adequacy Standards of Educational Buildings.  The Board of Education may suspend, deny renewal or revoke a locally authorized charter if it should fail to meet these requirements.

The Board of Education shall not approve the initial application of a charter school or renew a locally authorized charter school on or after July 1, 2015 unless the facility of the charter school meets one of the following requirements:

  • It is housed in a building that is owned by the charter school, Albuquerque Public Schools, the state, an institution of the state, another political subdivision of the state, the federal government or one of its agencies or a tribal government 
  • It is housed in a building that is subject to a lease purchase arrangement that has been entered into and approved pursuant to the Public School Lease Purchase Act
  • The facility meets New Mexico Adequacy Standards for Educational Buildings and the owner of the building is contractually obligated to maintain those standards at no additional cost to the locally charter school, Albuquerque Public Schools, or state of New Mexico

Capital Master Plan

Albuquerque Public Schools shall include a charter school that has been renewed by its authorizer at least once and has been in full operation for five (5) or more years in its capital master plan.  Agreement to this condition by the governing body of the locally authorized charter school shall be a requirement for renewal.  Charter schools shall be evaluated and prioritized in the capital master plan using the criteria and prioritization process adopted by the Board of Education on November 20, 2009 and as subsequently amended.

Once a charter school that has been renewed by its authorizer at least once meets the requirements of the criteria established for inclusion in the capital master plan, Facilities Design and Construction shall undertake pre-programming of facilities for the locally authorized charter school. The locally authorized charter school shall then be queued in the prioritization needs assessment of the Albuquerque Public Schools Capital Master Plan along with and exactly like all other existing facilities/schools in the district for funding.

A charter school that has been renewed by its authorizer at least once shall forego its per-membership payout, as per a memorandum of understanding, for capital money at a minimum of twenty-four months, unless the charter school has agreed to an earlier date, before the commencement of construction on its capital project begins.  Failure to agree to this term may result in lowering the charter school’s priority and, therefore, delay the capital project for a charter school.

Need assessments for the next capital funding cycle shall be completed in the appropriate timeline and final priorities for voter approval shall be presented to the Board of Education for approval approximately four months prior to the general obligation bond election.  Final approved priorities set by the Board of Education shall be placed on the ballot for voter approval in the general obligation bond election.

All agreements regarding facilities and the capital master plan shall be included in the contract negotiated between Albuquerque Public Schools and the locally authorized charter school.  These agreements shall include respective roles and responsibilities in maintaining the facility.

Reporting Requirements

The Board of Education and Albuquerque Public Schools administration reserve the right to request any and all information from a locally authorized charter school at any time during its authorization period.  Locally authorized charter schools shall provide the district with any information requested by the Board of Education, superintendent, his/her designee(s) or the Charter/Magnet School Department as soon as possible but no longer than fifteen (15) business days after the initial request was made.

The Board of Education and the Charter/Magnet School Department shall receive an enrollment report from each locally authorized charter school on the second Wednesday in October, the second Wednesday in December and the second Wednesday in February.

The Board of Education, the Charter/Magnet School Department and the Charter School Business Office shall receive financial reports, which shall include all monthly bank statements for the quarter, from locally authorized charter schools quarterly.  Financial reports may be required monthly as determined by the Charter School Business Office.  Any pertinent information from the financial reports shall be provided to the superintendent who shall report that information to the Board of Education.  The Board of Education at its discretion shall receive all annual audited financial statements and other finance-related compliance reports from locally authorized charter schools. 

The Charter/Magnet School Department may, upon request, receive a copy of all minutes of meetings held by the governing body of the locally authorized charter schools. 

The Board of Education and Charter/Magnet School Department shall receive an academic report from each locally authorized charter school at least annually in August.  This report shall include the academic performance of students attending the locally authorized charter school and all standards based assessments results.

The Board of Education and Charter/Magnet School Department shall receive a facilities report from each locally authorized charter school at least annually.  This report shall include a description of current facilities and how they meet New Mexico State Adequacy Standards for Educational Buildings.  This report shall also include a plan and timeline for how locally authorized charter school facilities will meet New Mexico State Adequacy Standards for Educational Buildings by 2015 if they do not already do so.

The Board of Education and Charter/Magnet School Department shall receive confirmation that all governing body members of a locally authorized charter school have attended the mandatory New Mexico Public Education Department training course of governing body members.

Reports shall be submitted in writing to the Charter/Magnet School Department and the Board may request the report be made in person.  The superintendent, or his/her designee(s), shall establish requirements of information to be included in these reports.  Failure to submit any of these reports may be grounds for suspension or revocation of the locally authorized charter school.

Finances

If Albuquerque Public Schools approves and authorizes a charter school, the Board of Education and Albuquerque Public Schools administration shall have oversight of that charter school’s financial operations and reporting.  Locally authorized charter schools shall be deemed as component parts of Albuquerque Public Schools for audit purposes.  Due to their classification as component units of Albuquerque Public Schools, the Board of Education shall require quarterly financial reports, which shall include all monthly bank statements for the quarter, be submitted by the locally authorized charter school.  The governing body of a locally authorized charter school shall comply with New Mexico state statute regarding finance and audit committee requirements.

The Charter/Magnet School Department shall collaborate with the Albuquerque Public Schools Internal Auditor and the Albuquerque Public Schools Finance Department to develop specific processes for financial reporting by locally authorized charter schools, including due dates for that reporting. 
Albuquerque Public Schools may conduct internal audits of finances of locally authorized charter school by the Albuquerque Public Schools Internal Audit Department.

The Charter School Business Office shall notify the Charter/Magnet School Department when issues of non-compliance arise.  The Charter/Magnet School Department shall communicate directly to the governing body of the charter school to resolve issues of non-compliance.  The Board of Education reserves the right to hold a special meeting to discuss non-compliance issues directly with the governing body of the charter school.  If the governing body of the charter school does not resolve non-compliance issues, Albuquerque Public Schools may revoke that charter school’s charter.

Budget

To comply with New Mexico state statute, Albuquerque Public Schools shall consider locally authorized charter schools as component parts of the district.  Locally authorized charter school’s financial data shall be included in the district’s financial reporting. 

Locally authorized charter schools shall submit a balanced budget annually to the charter school business manager including all required supporting documents.  The process for creating, submitting and receiving approval or denial for a locally authorized charter school shall be as follows:

  1. The charter school business manager shall meet with representatives from the locally authorized charter school or the governing body of the locally authorized charter school to communicate details of budget input that are needed to complete the process.
  2. The locally authorized charter school shall receive budget input templates and state equalization guarantee computation worksheet from the New Mexico Public Education Department via the Operating Budget Management System.  The locally authorized charter school also shall receive additional requirements for supplemental information to be provided to the New Mexico Public Education Department.  
  3. The business manager of the locally authorized charter school shall complete and submit draft budget templates and required supplemental data to the appropriate New Mexico Public Education Department budget analyst and the Albuquerque Public Schools charter school business manager.
  4. The charter school business manager shall review the budget submitted and shall, in consultation with the governing body of the locally authorized charter school, make any necessary revisions.  
  5. The charter school business manager shall present the budgets for all locally authorized charter schools to the chief financial officer, the assistant superintendent for school and community support and the Charter/Magnet Schools director for approval.  
  6. Upon approval of the chief financial officer, the assistant superintendent for school and community support and the Charter/Magnet Schools director, the chief financial officer shall submit the budgets of all locally authorized charter schools to the superintendent for approval or denial.  
  7. Upon approval from the superintendent, the budgets for all locally authorized charter schools shall be presented to the Board of Education, at the same meeting as the presentation of the Albuquerque Public Schools budget.  
  8. Upon approval from the Board of Education, the President of the Board of Education and superintendent shall sign the appropriate required documentation.  
  9. The Albuquerque Public Schools charter school business manager shall submit the appropriate required documentation to the New Mexico Public Education Department in compliance with all deadlines.
  10. The business manager of a loally authorized charter school shall submit the charter schools’ operating templates and any additional supplemental documentation to the New Mexico Public Education Department.  It shall be the responsibility of the locally authorized charter school to respond to any inquiries or requests from the New Mexico Public Education Department regarding their budget.
  11. The Albuquerque Public Schools charter school business manager shall confirm approval of all locally authorized charter school budgets by the New Mexico Public Education Department.
  12. The Albuquerque Public Schools Finance Department shall assist locally authorized charter schools by flowing appropriate funds received by the New Mexico Public Education Department to locally authorized charter schools.

The budgets of all locally authorized charter schools shall be subject to approval or denial by the Board of Education and the New Mexico Public Education Department.

The budget for a locally authorized charter school shall include the following documents:

  • State Equalization Guarantee Revenue Estimate Worksheet
  • Location Budget Input Form
  • District checklist of required charter budget documents
  • Required New Mexico Public Education Department budget documents, including completed Operating Budget Management System Operating Budget Template
  • District approval of Charter Budget Form (PED 901 BCS-10)

Employees

Locally authorized charter schools shall comply with §22-8B-10 NMSA 1978.   Albuquerque Public Schools employees shall comply with all human resources and leave policies and procedural directives if they choose to apply for employment with a locally authorized charter school.

Oversight of Charter Schools

The Charter/Magnet School Department shall conduct an annual visit of each locally authorized charter school to review its operations, administration and provisions of its contract with the Board of Education.  The Charter/Magnet School Department shall establish specific procedures and requirements for oversight visits.  Minimum requirements for oversight visits include:

  • Documentation and review of school improvement
  • Documentation and review of assessment and curriculum
  • Documentation and review of special education services
  • Documentation and review of human resources and personnel
  • Facilities information and review, including review of criteria for inclusion in the Capital Master Plan
  • School governance and leadership information and review
  • Documentation of fiscal management and accountability 
  • Classroom observations
  • Verification and a copy of the governing body’s Open Meetings Act Resolution
  • Progress of school since last visit
  • Findings and issues of concern or improvement 
  • Recommendations for improvement

A locally authorized charter school shall receive notification of an annual site visit and all paperwork required for the visit at least two (2) weeks in advance.  Relevant department personnel who participated in the site visit shall send information, comments and review of the locally authorized charter school to the Charter/Magnet School Department within five (5) business days of the completion of the visit.  The Charter/Magnet School Department shall compile this information and send a report of the site visit to the locally authorized charter school visited and to the departments who participated in the site visit within two (2) weeks of the completion of the visit.  The Charter/Magnet School Department shall report to the Board of Education if it determines that areas of concern need attention from the Board of Education after any site visit.

Dispute Resolution

The Charter/Magnet School Department shall include procedures in the contract for the resolution of disputes between the locally authorized charter school and the Board of Education.   If the district has a concern with the operations, academics, fiscal management and/or administration of a locally authorized charter school that is not addressed by state statute, the contract or the statement of assurances between Albuquerque Public Schools and the locally authorized charter school, the Charter/Magnet School Department shall provide written notification to the governing body of the charter school outlining the concern and a date by which the Board of Education would like a formal response from the governing body of the charter school.  The response from the charter school shall include an action plan which outlines how the governing body of the charter school will address the concern.

If the Board of Education does not receive a response from the governing body of the charter school by the date provided or if the Board of Education deems the plan to address the concern insufficient, the Board of Education may classify the concern as a dispute and initiate steps in dispute resolution.

The Board of Education may request a formal meeting between the governing body of the charter school and the Board of Education to address the concern and attempt to reach resolution.  If the dispute cannot be resolved, the Board of Education reserves the right to suspend, revoke or deny renewal of a locally authorized charter school.

Suspension of a Locally Authorized Charter School

The Board of Education may suspend the authority of locally authorized charter schools to control operations of the locally authorized charter school when there has been failure by the locally authorized charter school to meet requirements of federal and state statute, rules of the New Mexico Public Education Department, adequate yearly progress, contract provisions or district policies and procedural directives. The Board of Education shall only consider suspension on a case-by-case basis and after consultation with the superintendent and Charter/Magnet School Department. 

When considering suspension of a locally authorized charter school, Albuquerque Public Schools shall implement the following process:

  • The Board of Education, superintendent and Charter/Magnet School Department shall discuss concerns with a locally authorized charter school and reasons for and the purpose of a proposed suspension
    • The Board of Education, superintendent or Charter/Magnet School Department may offer alternatives to suspension which shall be taken under consideration before any decision to suspend is made
  • If the Board of Education decides to propose suspension of a locally authorized charter school, formal, written notification shall be sent from the Board of Education to the governing body of the locally authorized charter school. This notification shall include:
    • causes for prospective suspension
    • a request for an action plan from the governing body to address these concerns 
    • the date by which a formal written response from the governing body shall be received by the Board of Education
    • the date of a public hearing to be conducted by the Board of Education at which the locally authorized charter school may appear and show cause why the suspension should not be put into effect
  • The governing body of the locally authorized charter school shall have thirty (30) calendar days to provide a written response to the notification of prospective suspension with a proposed action plan
    • This response may include appearance at the public hearing conducted by the Board of Education at which the locally authorized charter school may show cause why the suspension should not be put into effect
    • The Board of Education shall suspend the authority of a locally authorized charter school if its governing body fails to respond within thirty (30) calendar days of the notification of prospective suspension
  • The Charter/Magnet School Department, superintendent and Board of Education shall review the written response submitted to the Board of Education and testimony from the public hearing to determine if the action plan satisfactorily complies with specific and attendant requirements set out in the notice of prospective suspension in order to remove the cause for suspension
  • If the written response, testimony and action plan from the locally authorized charter school do not satisfactorily address causes for suspension, the Board of Education, by majority vote, may suspend the authority of the locally authorized charter school
  • Upon suspension, the Board of Education shall act in lieu of the governing body of the locally authorized charter school
    • The Board of Education shall consider retention of existing locally authorized charter school administrators and employees
    • The Board of Education shall conduct any termination or discharge of locally authorized charter school employees in accordance with the School Personnel Act
    • The Board of Education shall limit any personnel action to the authority set forth in the suspended locally authorized charter school’s policies
    • The Board of Education shall not be obligated to any locally authorized charter school employment plans or letters of intent that involve the hiring of an individual holding or seeking a certificate of waiver
  • The Board of Education shall execute all the legal authority of the governing body of the locally authorized charter school.  The Board of Education may appoint a designee to delegate authority to act in lieu of the suspended governing body of the locally authorized charter school, provided that there shall be no contract with a private entity for the management of a charter school
  • The Board of Education, or its designee, shall monitor operations and improvements of the locally authorized charter school to address causes for original suspension
  • The Board of Education may, by majority vote, remove the suspension of a locally authorized charter school once the locally authorized charter school has demonstrated satisfactory compliance with specific and attendant requirements set out in the notice of prospective suspension in order to remove the cause for suspension

To determine if there has been a failure by the locally authorized charter school to meet requirements of federal and state statutes, rules of the New Mexico Public Education Department, contract provisions or district procedural directives the Board of Education shall consider the following factors:

  • The existence of a pattern of noncompliance with requirements of any applicable federal and state statute, New Mexico Public Education Department rules, state or federal regulations, contract provisions or district procedural directives
  • The nature and severity of any identified area or areas of noncompliance with requirements of any applicable federal and state statute, New Mexico Public Education Department rules, state or federal regulations, contract provisions or district procedural directives
  • The nature and type of notice given by the Board of Education to the applicable governing body of a locally authorized charter school regarding the area or areas of noncompliance with requirements of any applicable federal and state statute, New Mexico Public Education Department rules, state or federal regulations, contract provisions or district procedural directives
  • The opportunity to correct the area or areas of noncompliance, if correction is possible under the circumstances
  • the extent of any efforts to correct the area or areas of noncompliance by the locally authorized charter school
  • The reasons given by the locally authorized charter school for failing to comply with any applicable federal and state statute, New Mexico Public Education Department rules, state or federal regulations, contract provisions or district procedural directives leading to the proposed suspension.

The Charter/Magnet School director, assistant superintendent for student and community support services, and/or the superintendent may recommend, at any time during the suspension process, that the Board of Education move directly to revocation of a charter of a locally authorized charter school.  This recommendation may be made to the Board of Education if it is discovered during investigation of or communication with the locally authorized charter school that there has been grievous misconduct by the locally authorized charter school or an apparent failure to work towards resolution of the concerns of the district.  This recommendation may be made to the Board of Education when it is in the best interest of the district, the students of the locally authorized charter school, the staff of the locally authorized charter school or the community.  The Board of Education may, at any time during the suspension process upon recommendation by the Charter/Magnet School director, assistant superintendent for student and community support services and/or the superintendent, revoke the charter of a locally authorized charter school through a vote of the majority of Board members.

The Charter/Magnet School Department shall develop specific procedures for charter school suspension that shall be utilized by Albuquerque Public Schools and locally authorized charter schools in the event of prospective suspension.

Revocation of a Charter of a Locally Authorized Charter School

The Board of Education may revoke the charter of a locally authorized charter school at any time if the Board of Education determines that the locally authorized charter school committed any of the follow actions:

  • Violated any condition, standard or procedure in the contract agreed upon by both the Board of Education and the governing body of the charter school
  • Failed to meet or make substantial progress toward achievement of minimum education standards or student performance standards identified in the initial application
  • Failed to meet generally accepted standards of fiscal management, including proper reporting of finances when requested by the Board of Education
  • Violated any federal or state law from which the locally authorized charter school was not specifically exempted
  • Failed to meet New Mexico Adequacy Standards for Educational Buildings 
  • Violated any district policy or procedural directive

The Board of Education shall provide written notification to the governing body of the locally authorized charter school within fourteen (14) days the action if it revokes its charter.  Upon revocation of the charter, the locally authorized charter school shall cease all operations within thirty (30) days of notification of the revocation unless a stay or delay of closure has been ordered by the New Mexico secretary of education or the courts. 

Upon termination of the charter of a locally authorized charter school, all assets of the locally authorized charter school shall revert to the Board of Education.  Upon termination, if any portion or all of a state-chartered charter school is financed with the proceeds of general bond obligations issued by the Board of Education, the state-chartered charter school’s facility shall revert to the Board of Education.

Appeals

Albuquerque Public Schools shall comply with all federal and state statutes regarding the right of the governing body of a locally authorized charter school to appeal a decision of the Board of Education concerning the denial, nonrenewal, suspension or revocation of a locally authorized charter school or the imposition of conditions that are unacceptable to the governing body of a locally authorized charter school or charter school applicant to the New Mexico secretary of education.  Albuquerque Public Schools shall comply with all requests for information from the secretary necessary for review of a decision made by the Board of Education concerning locally authorized charter schools or charter school applicants.  Albuquerque Public Schools shall comply with the final decision of the secretary of education concerning any appeal filed by a locally authorized charter school or charter school applicant.

Definitions

For purposes of this procedural directive, “charter school” means an existing public school within a school district that was authorized by a local school board to become a charter school prior to July 1, 2007, or a public school developed by one or more parents, teachers or community members authorized by the chartering authority to become a charter school.

For purposes of this procedural directive, “locally authorized charter school” means a charter school whose charter is approved by the Albuquerque Public Schools Board of Education.

For purposes of this procedural directive, “state authorized charter school” means a charter school whose charter is approved by the New Mexico Public Education Commission.

For purposes of this procedural directive, “governing body of the charter school” means the governing structure of a charter school as set forth in the school's charter.

For purposes of this procedural directive, “contract” is the binding negotiated legal document between the governing body of the charter school and the Albuquerque Public Schools Board of Education.  It may also be referred to as a “charter”.

For purposes of this procedural directive, “other educational purposes” includes health clinics, daycare centers, teacher training centers, school district administration functions and other ancillary services related to a school district's functions and operations.

Administrative Position:    Assistant Superintendent for Student and Community Support Services

Department Director:    Charter/Magnet School Department Director

References:

Board Policy Cross Ref: K.12 Charter Schools

Legal Cross Ref.:

  • 22-8B-1 NMSA 1978
  • 22-8B-4.2 NMSA 1978
  • 22-8B-5 NMSA 1978
  • 22-8B-6 NMSA 1978
  • 22-8B-7 NMSA 1978
  • 22-8B-8 NMSA 1978
  • 22-8B-12 NMSA 1978
  • 22-2C-1 NMSA 1978
  • Public School Personnel Act

Procedural Directive Cross Ref.:

Forms Cross Ref.:

NSBA/NEPN Classification: LBD

Approved: August 24, 2000
Revised: October 31, 2000
Introduced: April 9, 2010
Reviewed: April 14, 2010
Reviewed: June 28, 2010
Reviewed: July 12, 2010
Approved: July 23, 2010

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