The Ed-Watch series is designed to increase access to information on what decisions
are being made regarding public education in Clark County and Nevada.
State Public Charter School Authority (SPCSA)
What is the SPCSA & what are they responsible for? Considered one of Nevada’s school districts, the SPCSA sponsors and oversees public charter schools. The Authority consists of seven appointed members responsible for overseeing educational and operational standards and holding sponsored schools accountable to the academic achievement of students.
How often does the SPCSA Board meet? The SPCSA typically meets once a month, generally on Fridays.
Click here for SPCSA meeting schedule and materials.
Can community members engage at SPCSA Board Meetings? While all meetings of the SPCSA are typically held publicly at the Nevada Department of Education building in Carson City and the Nevada Department of Education building in Las Vegas (1st floor boardroom), all meetings are now held virtually due to the COVID-19 crisis. Members of the public may view the meeting online via the link on the SPCSA’s Public Notice web page and the agenda and any supporting materials can be found here. Public comment may be given on any agenda item at the beginning of the meeting, or public comment regarding any matter that is SPCSA-related may be given at the conclusion of each Board meeting. Members of the community giving public comment can utilize the following conference call line: 1-312-584-2401; extension 3952176# with a time limit of three minutes per speaker. Alternatively, public comment may be submitted in writing to email@example.com, and any such public comment received prior to the meeting will be provided to the Authority and included in the written minutes of the meeting.
SBAC data perspectives for third and fourth graders
Concerns regarding Academic Notices of Concern from parents, educators, students, and administrators
Board Approved the Consent Agenda
Highlights of the consent agenda included transportation plans and amendment applications for Mater Academy of Nevada’s East, Bonanza, and Mountain View Campuses.
SPCSA Interim Executive Director’s Report
Highlights from the report include:
Delinquent Schools PERS Contributions: Explore Academy is working to obtain a loan to cover the amount owed to PERS; Nevada Prep has proposed a payment plan to the PERS Board, which is now under consideration; PilotEd Schools of Nevada will have contributions through September by the end of November; Sage Collegiate’s delinquency has been fully resolved; and TEACH Las Vegas has indicated they will receive a pass-through amount to cover the balance owned.
Pre-Opening Process for Schools: Pre-opening checklists and issues related to facilities and enrollment will be discussed at future board meetings, after questions from board members.
Growth Management Plan/2024 Academic and Demographic Needs Assessment: By January 31, Academic and Demographic Needs Assessments will be updated to utilize multiple years of school performance data. Work is underway on the updated document, and the draft is expected to be presented at the December board meeting.
Board Heard an Update Regarding the Closure of Girls Empowerment Middle School
The school and Trustees have wrapped up all items as scheduled, with the exception of the required audit.
Board Approved Nevada Prep’s Charter School Contract Amendment
The Board approved Nevada Prep Charter School’s amendment request to add grades K-2 beginning in the 2024-25 school year.
Staff presented academic performance data for SPCSA schools. This is the first year star ratings have been released since the COVID-19 pandemic. Comparatively, SPCSA schools outperformed State schools in the number of three, four, and five-star schools:
5-Star Schools: 43 schools (32%)
State: 85 schools, 11%
4-Star Schools: 20 schools (15%)
State: 79 schools, 10%
3-Star Schools: 35 schools (26%)
State: 179 schools, 24%
2-Star Schools: 24 schools (18%)
State: 195 schools, 26%
1-Star Schools: 12 schools (9%)
State: 223 schools, 29%
Generally, proficiency rates in English Language Arts (ELA), Math, and Science have decreased in recent years for SPCSA (but continue to outperform the State). Many students are not meeting grade-level proficiency expectations. Median growth was stagnant or increased slightly over 2021-2022, but the percentage of SPCSA schools meeting growth targets decreased. According to a memo distributed to District superintendents and the SPCSA by the Nevada Department of Education, 2022-23 school year growth data statewide was impacted by decreased participation in assessments and pandemic disruptions.
The SPCSA utilizes an Academic Performance Framework to rate school performance. This Framework is similar to the NSPF. The Framework rates schools Exceeds Standard, Meets Standard, Does Not Meet Standard, and Below Standard, based on a point scale (available in the presentation materials). For the 2022-23 school year, 75% of SPCSA schools were rated as meeting or exceeding standards; 21% of schools did not meet the standard, and 4% of schools bell below the standard.
Board Took Action on Academic Performance Recommendations
SPCSA staff provided the Board with their recommendations relating to academic performance notices. For schools being issued a Notice of Concern, each school had the opportunity to present to the Board; those presentations are linked below. The Board took the following actions: