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12 Facility Planning Mistakes.... That You Won't Make

Undertaking a facility development, acquisition, or construction project for your permanent school home is a BIG deal. This informative webinar will show you the 12 most common, fixable - but often devastating - mistakes charter school founders, board, and leaders make in their facility planning. Participants will leave with the practical, project-saving tools and insight to avoid these mistakes. This webinar will be presented by Ms. Melissa Provost the Manager of Business Development and Patrick Beausoleil the Vice President of Business Development for Highmark School Development. Read More

2012 - Florida Statutory Requirements (1002.33)

This document contains a list of the statutory requirements of charter schools based on the 2012 Florida Statutes. Read More
May 2015

2015 New Applicant Training

Presented at the New Applicant Trainings sponsored by the Florida Department of Education Thursday, ... Read More
Jul 2017

2017 HB 7069 Statute Updates

The 2017 Legislature approved House Bill #7069 which made many changes to educational and charter ... Read More

Accounting and Financial Management

Charter schools are required to use accounting processes that align to the “Financial and Program Cost Accounting and Reporting for Florida Schools”, commonly known as the “Redbook.” This presentation will talk about the Redbook accounting requirements, as well as some accounting best practices for charter school leaders. Read More

Aligning your budget to educational priorities

Balancing budget priorities is difficult for all charter schools in Florida, but trying to prioritize the budget for high needs / turn-around schools is an even more complex puzzle. Aligning your educational priorities to your plan for spending money is essential to ensure the correct staff are in place, and that your students achieve the planned academic outcomes. This webinar hosted a panel of school leaders and financiers who have experience with turn-around schools and talked about how to align a budget to a school's academic priorities. Read More

Anti-Bullying Programs in Charter Schools

Florida Statutes expressly prohibits bullying and harassment of any student or employee in public schools in Florida. The statutes lay out specific steps which schools must take in order to ensure that bullying is addressed. How can these statutes be implemented within Florida Charter Schools to provide them with the flexibility and autonomy anticipated at charters, but still ensuring the safety of students and employees at your school? Join us for a presentation by Brooks Rumenik, the Director of the Office of Safe Schools at the FLDOE where she talks about anti-bullying efforts,and how you can implement them at your school. Read More

Appling for 501(c)(3) Status

Charter Schools in Florida are required to incorporate as not-for-profit agencies.  This means that when ... Read More
Sep 2017

Applying For FEMA Assistance

Description to come... Read More

Asset Disposition Form

This form is a sample form to document when a school disposes of an asset at the school due to the item being old or no longer of use. This form can be of assistance with auditing to show when materials are taken off of the school's inventory. Read More

Assistive Technology

One of the requirements of the Individuals with Disabilities Act is ensuring students have the services and equipment that they need in order to be provided a free and appropriate public education. Charter Schools may be required to provide an implement assistive technology for students who are enrolled at the school. What does this mean? Join us for this webinar presented by Susan Saunders of FDLRS (Florida’s Diagnostic & Learning Resources System). Ms. Saunders will help charter schools understand the requirements and the options available. Read More

Attorney Contacts

The following list of attorneys has been generated by CSU staff. We do not make any assertions about the qualities or expertise of these attorneys, only that they have worked with charter schools in the past. If you know of other attorneys who should be added to this list, please contact Curtis Fuller. Read More

Auditors with Charter School Experience

The Florida Auditor General posts all charter school audits on their website (click here to ... Read More

Authorization for OTC Medication Administration Form

This is a form that school can use to allow parents to grant permission to a school to administer over the counter medication. Read More

Authorization for Prescription Medication Administration Form

This is a sample form schools can use to obtain parent and physician authorization to administer prescription medication at school. Read More

Authorization to Carry and Self Administer MDI Form

This is a form schools can use for parents and physicians to give permission for students to carry and self-administer asthma inhalers. Read More

Behavioral Data To Support MTSS

Charter Schools are always concerned about supporting students and ensuring they are learning effectively. One of the important concepts of Florida Education is the idea of a multi-tiered system of supports (MTSS) to help students succeed. In order for MTSS programs to be effective informative and efficient data systems must be in place to monitor student success. Behavioral data can be particularly useful for identifying meaningful strategies to proactively support positive and productive student behaviors. This webinar will provide strategies for collecting, reporting, and applying behavioral data at Tier 1, Tier 2, and Tier 3. Read More

Board Member Application

This form can be used by potential board members to ascertain their interest and areas of expertise with regards to joining a charter school's Board of Directors. Read More

Board Member Self Evaluation Form

This form can be used by Governing Board members following a board meeting to provide feedback on how the meeting went. Periodically collecting such data can help a charter school focus in on areas that may help the Governing Board operate more effectively. Read More

Budget Template Tool

Budget Template Tool The Charter Support Unit has developed a budget template tool to assist ... Read More

Budget Template Tool Webinar

The Charter Support Unit has developed a budget template tool which assists with developing a comprehensive budget for operating a charter school. This webinar will present the tool and walk through the recent changes added to the tool. The presentation will start with updates for those who are familiar with the tool, and we will then circle back to start from the beginning for new users. Read More

Building A School Culture of Leadership

Building a school culture with a mindful purpose is imperative. Whether you like it or not, a culture will be established at your school. It may be a positive culture or a negative school culture. But establishing a positive school culture is only the first step. Your goal, as a leader should be to foster a school culture that is positive and where future leaders thrive and grow. This webinar will give a basic overview of how leaders can use various research studies to develop a positive culture at your school. Read More

Building Key Signout Form

This is a sample form that a school can use for staff members to acknowledge the sign out of building keys, and to warn staff about the consequences of losing keys to the building. Read More

Building on a Foundation of Engagement through Stay Interviews

Are you looking for ways to more effectively engage and build on the culture of your charter school? After all, engagement and culture are proven key drivers of performance and retention. Engagement is that magical thing that happens when employees consistently give your organization discretionary effort. So how do you encourage and enhance employee engagement while supporting a culture of growth and excellence? Many organizations are finding that through effectively and authentically conducting "stay interviews" they are able to enhance employee engagement, create positive cultures focused on lifelong learning and improve retention. This session will review why stay interviews lead to improved engagement and retention, benefits of and key components for effectively conducting stay interviews within your organization. Read More

Building Rental Agreement

If you are able to sub-lease your building, we recommend having policies established regarding the process and requirements for outside organizations who wish to rent out your building's space. If you are leasing your property, be careful to review your lease, as many leases prohibit sub-leasing your space. This form should be modified to match the policies in place at your school. (The policies cited on this draft are the policies used in the CSU Sample Policy Manual). Read More

Bullying Investigation Report

To document investigations pertaining to the state's required bullying requirements. Read More

Bullying Prevention Plan

To document a plan for preventing bullying after it has been determined that bullying is occuring. Read More

Can They Really Ask for That?

Increasingly, charter schools are receiving public records requests from the media and others. Responding to requests improperly or without thought can cause legal and public relations nightmares. Learn about public records, maintenance requirements, responding to requests from legal and public relations perspectives and what to do when the media calls. Read More

Car Pooling Registration

Charter Schools are required to ensure that transportation is not a barrier to attendance. One way that might be part of the school's plan is to develop a car pooling program for families. The attached form could be used to gather information from parents regarding car pooling. Read More

Changes to Public Records Statutes

Public Records Requests have been on the rise for charter schools, and lawsuits for those who do not properly respond to such requests are a reality for charters throughout Florida. The public records statute was recently changed to require that if someone plans to sue over a public records request, they must provide 5-days notice before filing the lawsuit if the school has properly posted who their “custodian of public records” is. This simple posting could save Charter Schools thousands of dollars and many headaches. Join us for a presentation about this new change and public records laws in general presented by attorney Shawn Arnold of the Arnold Law Firm who is Board Certified in Education Law and is counsel to more than 100 charter schools in Florida. Read More

Chart of Accounts

Charter Schools are required to utilize the Financial and Program Cost Accounting and Reporting for Florida Schools, commonly known as the Red Book. This document breaks down the basic requirements that charter school staff members need to understand to ensure they are properly coding expenses and revenue according to the Red Book. Read More

Charter School & EMO Ethics: Not Just Do's and Don'ts

Charter school boards are subject to public ethics laws.  In general, charter school management companies are not.  Both must comply with state employment, whistleblower, deceptive trade practice, and false claims act laws.  This session examines the public ethics obligations of charter school boards, the intersection of state statutory regulations with them, and best practices for management companies.  Best practices derive from state and federal regulatory regimes, as well as warranties and representations required by most banks and other financial institutions which finance school real estate and improvements. This webinar, presented by Mr. Nathan Adams of Holland & Knight LLP will be especially helpful for board members and administrators. Read More

Charter School Facilities 101

For new schools, or schools looking to expand, facilities issues often cause issues for charter schools in providing the best possible program. Questions around how to go about getting the best deal on a lease, or exploring the possibility of purchasing are stressful decisions for school leadership and governance. This webinar focused on the pros and cons of leasing versus purchasing, and information to keep in mind as you start negotiating for a space to best meet the needs of your students. Read More

Charter School Insurance

How is your Charter School protected if your board is sued because a student bullies another student who commits suicide? This and other real life issues will be discussed in this webinar that will help your charter school protect its assets, its staff, its board and students from catastrophic events. Read More

Charter School Insurance Guide

This charter school insurance guide provides insurance about what types of insurance charter schools should consider and might be required to have based on their charter contract. The guide discusses the insurance requirements of the model charter school contract and provides definitions about typical insurance terms. This guide is based off a similar guide provided by the Palm Beach County School District for their charter schools, and we thank them for allowing us to use their model. Read More

Charter School Law Highlights for Board Members and School Leaders

The Charter School statute (1002.33) is over 17,000 words long and includes many requirements for charter schools and their sponsors. What are the essential pieces governing board members should be focused on? Join us for this informative webinar where we will quickly run through the primary laws that the governing board members of currently operating schools should be aware of to ensure their schools are in compliance. Kathleen Schoenberg, an attorney who works with charter schools throughout Florida and who provides the state-mandated governance training for board members, will be presenting this informative webinar. Read More

Charter School Marketing 101

Do you have a fantastic Charter School but aren’t sure how to market it to parents, community and local business. Tap into the perspective of a professional who has a Marketing and Public Relations Overview that might work for your school. Read More
Nov 2014

Charter Support Unit's 2014 Conference Presentation

The CSU presented at the 2014 Florida Charter School Conference to discuss the services available ... Read More


In conjunction with the Department of Education, the staff of the Charter Support Unit have been working to develop a new compliance tool available to charter schools and districts throughout the state. The goal is to help districts and schools organize their communication and submission of the requirements of charter school contracts. This presentation will provide a demonstration of the system. Read More

Check Request Form

This is a sample check request form to be used by a school to document when a check needs to be written. Read More

Classroom Safety Checklist

This is a sample form the school could adopt to ensure all of the typical safety issues that schools should be concerned about are completed in each classroom. The school may wish to institute a policy whereby this form is completed each semester for each classroom at the school. Read More

Collaboration for Student Success

When the adults in students’ lives work together collaboratively, students can succeed. This is especially true when it comes to exceptional students. Teachers must work collaboratively between the regular education and special education settings to ensure student’s needs are met. Join us for a presentation which will focus on how these collaboration can be effectively implemented at charter schools. The presentation will be presented by Sallie Payne of FDLRS (Florida’s Diagnostic &Learning Resources System). Read More

Complaint & Grievance Form

This is a document for staff members to file a complaint about the operations of the school.  Each school should have a policy about how such complaints are handled at the school and who is responsible for receiving and investigating employee complaints. Read More

Comprehensive Policy Manual

This sample policy manual provides a sample comprehensive policy manual that schools can use to craft their own policy manual. It is strongly recommended that schools do not just adopt this policy manual, but instead use it as a reference to develop a policy manual that will work well with the school in accordance with your charter application, charter contract and desires of the governing board. Read More

Conflicts of Interest, Ethics and Nepotism

The Governing Board members of charter schools are volunteers, restricted by statute from personal gain from the school itself. Strict rules regarding conflict of interest, ethics and nepotism exist to prevent Governing Board members or their immediate family members from financial gain. These restrictions often raise questions of what is and is not allowable for governing board members. This webinar, presented by attorney Kathleen Schoenberg will focus specifically on conflicts of interest, ethics and nepotism to help governing board members and charter school staff who support them make appropriate decisions in their governance. Read More

Credit Card Receipt Form

This sample form can be used by schools to track the receipts from employees and directors who have access to a corporate credit card for the school. Read More
Feb 2016

CSP Budget Development Tool

The Charter Support Unit has been asked by the State of Florida's Department of School ... Read More

Detailed Sample Safety Plan

This sample safety plan provides guidance and a sample for developing a comprehensive safety plan. School's should not just adopt this document!, it is important this only be used as a guide for developing a custom plan specific to your facility, staff and school. Read More

Developing A Charter School Website

The recent legislation signed into law by the Governor requires for the first time that Charter Schools maintain a website with information about the charter school, the academics, finances and governance. While most schools have a website, many have not put a lot of strategic thought into how to maintain, update and use their website to best communicate with families, and now to meet the requirements of the law. This webinar will talk about the requirements for the website, and then various recommendations to consider when developing or redesigning your website, as well as look at a few services ranging from open source free options to paid hosting services you can use when developing your site. We also will share some general thoughts of things to consider if you are looking to hire or outsource the development to another party. Read More

Discrimination or Harassment Complaint Form

This is a form that a school could adopt to give employees the opportunity to file a complaint of discrimination or harassment against the school or other staff member. Read More

Due Process for Exceptional Student Education

One of the most common legal areas charter schools run into is with regards to special education services. Schools must fully understand the the due process rights of the students and families receiving ESE services. This presentation, presented by an attorney who has assisted numerous charter schools with special education related situations, discussed the responsibilities of the charter school, and how to avoid potential legal issues when it comes to appropriately carrying out the requirements of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). Read More

Effective Board Meetings & Members

This webinar will discussed the three “R’s” – recruiting, running and retaining the right mix of people on your charter school board of directors. This presentation focused on ideas for filling vacant board seats and share tips for organizing your board to help retain quality board members. We also discussed the steps necessary to holding a well-organized, productive board meeting. The webinar was presented by Kathleen Schoenberg, an attorney focusing on charter school operations and an approved Florida governance trainer and Marjorie Waldo, the Principal of Franklin Academy in Boynton Beach. Read More

Effectively Using Social Media as a Marketing Tool

Marketing charter schools can be a complicated task. With limited budgets, and the ever present need to ensure the school meets enrollment targets, finding inexpensive and effective ways of recruiting new families is essential. Join us for a webinar presented by a Principal who has found ways to effectively utilize social media to engage and recruit families. Avant Garde Academy K-8 Broward opened in 2015 with an impressive enrollment of 943 students, thanks in large part to the social media efforts utilized by Principal Steven Blinder. Mr. Blinder will share some of what did and did not work well as this informative webinar. Read More

Employee Application Form

Sample employee application form to use for potential employees. Read More

Employee Change Documentation

Form to be used to document when a change is made to an employee's salary or position. Read More

Employee Exit Check List

Form to use to ensure all tasks are completed when an employee resigns or is terminated. Read More

Employee Reference Check Form

This form is a way to document the employee reference checks conducted on employee applicants. Read More

Employee Time Off Request Form

Form to use to document when an employee is absent from work and to record paid time off / sick leave / etc. Read More

Employee Timesheet

Sample timesheet form which automatically calculates an employee's total time for a pay period. Read More

Employee Warning Notice

This is a sample form to document warnings issued for disciplinary issues related to the school's employees. Read More

Employment Offer Letter

Sample employee offer letter which can be used when an employee will be hired prior to signing an employee contract. Read More

End of the Year Checkout List

Sample list to give to teachers before they leave for the summer months to ensure all tasks related to closing the school up for the summer are complete. Read More

Enrolling for Next Year: Marketing, Lottery, Etc.

Just when you feel your finally starting to get a handle on this school year, it’s time to realize that next year is only six months away, and the recruitment, marketing and planning for next year needs your attention. This presentation will focus on some key ideas to remember when marketing your charter school, cover when the law says a lottery is required, and some possible methods to conduct your annual lottery. Read More

Enrollment Check List Form

This form is a sample a charter can use to develop their own checklist of all of the forms that they require for students before they attend the school. This checklist helps the office staff to ensure everything is collected from each student. Read More

Equipment Responsibility Form

This is a sample form the school may wish to use when issuing expensive equipment to individual staff members, such as a laptop computer, to ensure employees understand the responsibility for caring for such equipment. Read More

ERate - What is it and how can it benefit my school?

ERate is a federal program operated by the Universal Service Administration Company. ERate provides funding to schools and libraries throughout the country for telecommunication services. This includes telephone and internet services, as well as possibly the infrastructure behind providing those services. Schools must apply to receive funds, and open a public bid for the services they wish to receive funds for before the February deadline. This presentation will cover the basics of applying for ERate, and what you must do now to secure funding for your school. Read More

ERate and Educational Technology

The universal service Schools and Libraries Program, commonly known as the E-rate Program, helps ensure that schools and libraries can obtain telecommunications and Internet access at affordable rates. However, the application process can be overwhelming and numerous deadlines are quickly approaching. If you would like to apply for this resource for the 2015-16 school year, now is the time to start planning and preparing your paperwork. This presentation will walk you through the basic qualification requirements and application process to accessing E-rate funding for your charter school. Read More

ESE 101

This webinar focused on the charter school's responsibilities for accommodating the needs of ESE students, as well as how to work effectively with your School District to ensure compliance. Read More

ESE Implementation: School and District Collaboration

A collaborative relationship between charter school and district is key to ensuring quality services for exceptional students. Understanding the roles, responsibilities and resources available will help the school and the district meet the needs of all students. This webinar will be particularly beneficial to charter school administrators, board members and ESE teachers. Read More

ESE Inclusionary Practices

Interested in making your school more inclusive? Charter schools are committed to providing exceptional public education. In line with a commitment to set high expectation for students, charter school operators must ensure that schools are not just accessible, but successful in providing equitable outcome and meaningful participation for all students including those with learning disabilities. While there are some students who require a significant amount of support, the majority of students with special needs can be successfully educated in the general education classroom. Successful programs address the unique learning needs of all its students including students with disabilities. This webinar will explore Universal Design for Learning, Multi-Tiered System of Supports coupled with quality instruction and targeted interventions which can help to ensure that students with disabilities are able to access quality education programs offered by charter schools. Read More

ESE Service Delivery Models

A single type of service or service delivery can’t be expected to adequately meet the needs of all the exceptional students in your school. Understanding when more intensive or different instruction is needed, and how to provide it, will help ensure quality services. Issues of contracted providers were discussed in this webinar and is particularly beneficial to charter school administrators, board members and ESE teachers. Read More

Exit Interview Form

Sample questionnaire to give to employees once they leave employment with the school to collect data about how the school can improve from the employee's perspective. Read More

Expense Reimbursement Request

A form to be used to document employee expenses prior to reimbursing the employee for said expenses. Read More

Federal and State Tax Compliance Issues

Here in Florida, charter schools must be organized as or operated by a nonprofit organization, generally classified as a 501(c)(3) school by the Internal Revenue Service and the Florida Department of Revenue. This webinar will provide participants with an overview of the requirements for qualification as a 501(c)(3) school, including ongoing compliance requirements to maintain such status, as well as an overview of the various state tax requirements and benefits available to schools here in Florida. Read More

Field Trip Authorization Form

This form is a sample form a school could adopt for teachers to request permission to plan a field trip from the school's administration. Read More

Field Trip Cost Calculator

This document is a calculator that a school could use to allow staff to quickly calculate the cost that should be passed along to students for field trips. This calculator was implemented at a school where the school was having issues not collecting enough money to cover the costs of a fields trip. While a PDF version is provided below, there is no functionality, we recommend you download the Excel version of the document below. Read More

Field Trip Information for Chaperones

This form is a sample form a school could implement to provide essential information to chaperons for a field trip. We recommend that all chaperons be given information with essential phone numbers, students, and any other relevant emergency information. Read More

Field Trip Permission Form

This sample form can be used to get parental permission before students go on an off-campus field trip. Read More

Final Paycheck Calculations

This form is meant to provide documentation to employees who are separating from the school with regards to the amount they should expect on their final paycheck.  This document aligns with the calculations defined within the Sample Compensation Manual. Read More

Finding and Planning for Facilities

Facilities is one of the most common difficulties faced by new charter schools. The facilities most charters are able to secure to get their school started may not be the ideal situation to support their future plans. This presentation will talk about the importance of strategically thinking about the future, and then planning to make that future a reality. We will discuss what financial considerations should be put into place now to prepare the school to acquire a better facility in the future. Read More

Finding staff with is contracted by the FLDOE to provide its service/website for FREE to all Florida Charter Schools. With currently more than 30,000 certified, Florida-resident, Florida-certified educators in the resume database, their service is the largest Florida online K-12 educator recruitment service in the United States. This is an essential tool for recruiting and managing teacher applications for schools as they look to startup or grow. This webinar will focus on how to use this free service to find K-12 teachers, administrators, and related service personnel for their open positions. The presentation will demonstrate how to post jobs, search resumes, and how to send either local and/or email blasts to advertise open positions. You will also be advised how to get your school registered, if you are not already registered and using Read More

Fire Drill Log Form

While there is no formal requirement that schools have a specific documentation form to document their fire drills, fire drills are required to be held month, and we encourage schools to develop a system for monitoring and documenting these drills. This form is a sample form a school could use to document their fire drills, and keep them in a binder (perhaps near your fire alarm panel). Read More
Feb 2017

Firing an employee - Make sure you cross your "T"s and dot your "i"s

Charter Schools have the option to be a public or private employer. Florida is an at-will employment state. Many people believe that this means you can just terminate an employee when necessary. While this is true, terminating an employee does open the school up to potential lawsuits. Therefore it is important for schools to ensure they have policies in place to properly document and support employees prior to firing them. Join us for this presentation presented by Lindsay Oyewale of de Beaubien, Knight, Simmons, Mantzaris & Neal, LLP which will focus on the details of terminating an employee. Read More

Florida Charter School Evaluation Site

This webinar provided an overview of the Florida Charter School Evaluation Site. The training site is intended to sustain the onsite teacher and principal evaluation training funded by the Department of Education and delivered by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt/The Leadership and Learning Center throughout 2013. The resources provided on the site will help users understand and implement teacher and principal evaluation systems that meet the Florida statutory requirements. During this webinar, a team member from HMH walked attendees through the resources available on the website and how to easily access information to support evaluation plan development, refinement, or delivery of professional development on research-based teaching and leadership best practices. Read More

Florida Parent Network

In Florida, the number of parents who choose charter schools continues to grow. They love their children and are the most effective advocates for educational choice. This webinar will focus on how to grow a community of moms and dads who advocate for better regulations and provide grassroots support for lawmakers who champion their right to choose the best school for their kids. Only a mobilized army of moms, dads, guardians, grandparents and supporters can effectively advocate for charter schools’ continued future as well as for laws that help more children access charter schools in Florida. This webinar will be presented by Catherine Durkin Robinson, the Executive Director of the Florida Parent Network, which is associated with Step Up for Students. Read More

Florida's Single Sign On

The Department of Education has many resources and services available. In order to simplify logging into these multiple services, the state has developed the “Single Sign-On” (SSO) Portal. This SSO allows one username and password to access numerous resources available. This presentation will discuss the SSO and how to utilize it as a charter school. The webinar will be presented by Andrea Latham, from the FDOE’s Single Sign On Office. Read More

FMLA Request for Leave Form

Sample FMLA Request form to be used if your school is required to offer FMLA (Family and Medical Leave Act) leave to your employees. If you are working with an employee leasing or payroll company they may have a form you may be required to use, however, if they do not, this sample document could be modified to be used at your school. Read More

FTE Class Size Information

This webinar will review recent Class Size data; steps for calculating Class Size; discuss best practices for accurately reporting Class Size data; provide an overview of the Class Size appeals process; and discuss the reduction calculations to the Class Size Operating Categorical. Read More

FTE Re-Calibration

Starting with the 2013-14 school year, FTE payments are recalibrated at the state level so that no student is paid for being more than one full time student. Student FTE reported by more than one district is recalibrated and shared by both districts. This free webinar will be presented by Kendra Jahnke and Chris Sanchez from the Department of Education to help Charter Schools understand the FTE reporting and recalibration process for calculating a student’s amount, and how to utilize the FTE reports and other resources available to verify student FTE reported and funded. Read More

General Board Schedule Grid

This document provides a general outline for a schedule schools may wish to consider regarding regular annual topics the governing board must discuss and consider. Read More

Getting FTE Correct and Preparing for an FEFP Audit

This presentation will review the state reporting requirements addressing FTE reporting and steps to be taken to prepare for state FEFP audits. The presentation will review the specific components that are required to report students for funding under the FEFP. The webinar will also address some of the differences between the October and February surveys, and why schools should take both seriously. The webinar will be presented by Dr. Andy Binns who was formerly the Director of FTE & Student Reporting for the School District of Palm Beach County, as well as currently the Board Chair of the Palm Beach Maritime Academy, a charter school in Palm Beach. Read More

Getting Started on the Road To Accreditation

School accreditation is designed to help educational institutions boost their ongoing performance efforts as they challenge and inspire their students and the communities they serve. This presentation will inform attendees about the accreditation process and protocols. Attendees will be given an opportunity to interact with the standards. The presentation will explain how to begin the accreditation process, arrange for a Readiness Visit and what is needed for a successful External Review Visit. Read More

Gifted Education for Charter Schools

Florida defines gifted students as students who have superior intellectual development and are capable of high performance. While charter schools are required to address their plans for gifted education in their charter application, many schools find that actually implementing an effective gifted program can be complicated. Join us for this webinar presented by the a DOE Gifted Education Specialist Kathleen Casper where we will discuss the requirements for gifted education in Florida and some best practices that charter schools may wish to consider in developing and implementing their program for gifted students, ranging from identification, evaluation, developing an EP, and providing instructional support within the school. Read More

Google Apps for Education - A powerful free services for schools

Google Apps for Education (GAFE) is a free version of the Google Apps suite which typically costs business users $60 per user per year which is offered to schools and non profit organizations. The tool provides a free-cloud based email solution along with powerful collaborative tools for creating documents, websites, and more. The service is CIPA compliant, and can be used for staff and/or students. This presentation walked through the basic tools available with GAFE, how to submit an application for your school, and the basics of how to get it setup with your domain. Read More

Governance in the Sunshine

As a charter school, your Governing Board is a public entity, and subject to all of the rules and regulations of the “Government in the Sunshine” act in Florida Statutes. Understanding these rules is essential to ensure you have a properly operating Board. This presentation will highlight some of the key requirements of Government in the Sunshine and provide things to remember and watch out for in the operation of your charter school. Read More
Jan 2015

Governing Board Presentation

The Charter Support Unit is available to conduct this presentation for free to charter schools ... Read More

Governing Board Resources Presentation

The CSU has developed a presentation geared towards charter school governing boards. The goal of this presentation is to open a dialogue among the board about the role of governance at the school, and to provide the Board with answers to questions they may have regarding charter schools in Florida. This webinar will share some of the information that is provided during the governing board presentation, as well as provide information about how to request this service for your school's governing board. Read More

Government in the Sunshine - Part 1

Florida Charter Schools are required to comply with the state's complex Government in the Sunshine requirements. The current Government in the Sunshine manual is 326 pages long, and contains numerous requirements that public entities must comply with. This two-part webinar presented by Melissa Gross-Arnold and Shawn Arnold of the Arnold Law Firm will cover some of the key specific questions that are often asked by charter schools. A partial list of topics include: committees, evaluations, agendas, minutes, recordings, required attendees, electronic participation and more. The first of the two webinars will be presented on October 22 with the second presentation on October 29. This presentation will be especially beneficial for Governing Board members and the school administrators who support them. Read More

Government in the Sunshine - Part 2

Florida Charter Schools are required to comply with the state's complex Government in the Sunshine requirements. The current Government in the Sunshine manual is 326 pages long, and contains numerous requirements that public entities must comply with. This two-part webinar presented by Melissa Gross-Arnold and Shawn Arnold of the Arnold Law Firm will cover some of the key specific questions that are often asked by charter schools. A partial list of topics include: committees, evaluations, agendas, minutes, recordings, required attendees, electronic participation and more. This was the second of two webinars, and is particularly beneficial for Governing Board members and the school administrators who support them. Read More

Hard Copy Request Form

Some schools try to cut down on the amount of paper they print and send home.  In an attempt to do this schools are moving more towards electronic communication, however, not all families have access to the internet.  The school may wish to keep a list of parents who indicate that they do not have internet access, so that the school can send hard copies home with those children. This form could be used to collect that data from families, and the school can then maintain a list of students who require hard copies. Read More

High Expectations = Positive School Culture: Strategies for Success

With the many demands on educators, setting high expectations AND maintaining a positive school culture is a challenge for any school. By participating High Expectations = Positive School Culture: Strategies for Successin this webinar, attendees will hear how one school tackled declining student achievement and a negative school culture, turning it around to build a cohesive school team with high expectations. This presentation will provide examples of strategies that have proven highly effective in creating a positive school culture combined with student success. The strategies shared throughout this session will provide a toolkit of information for all attendees to implement in their own school community. The session will be presented by Sherry Watts and Kimberly Dison of Minneola Elementary Charter School. Read More

How a lender looks at a charter school

Parents entrust their children's education to you... and many charters face difficulty with building their dream facility. In order to make it a reality, schools need a lender willing to invest millions of dollars into the school. During this webinar, the presenters will review actual charter school budgets from a lender's perspective to identify what will catch a lender's eye. They will then discuss how you can address (or avoid) any weaknesses in your budget. This webinar will be presented by Adam Miller of EdTec, Inc. and Will Robison of Capital Impact Partners. Read More

How to Effectively Create a Professional Development Plan Using the Teacher Evaluation

Educators often talk about building life-long learners in our students. Equally importantly for charter school leaders is facilitating a process to make your staff members life long learners as well. This webinar will focus on providing an interactive process between those who are evaluated, the evaluators, and the coaches in order to develop realistic professional development plan. This interaction promotes effective peer communication to identify and address evaluatee's strength and weakness. The peer coaches can provide timely feedback regarding professional development standards, affecting student learning. The implementation of the strategies discussed in this webinar will facilitate professional development and student's growth. This webinar will be presented by Raul Baez of Excelsior Charter and Everest Charter Schools. Read More

IEP Development and Implementation

Register now: IEP Development and Implementation - The Individual Education Plan (IEP) is the cornerstone for the education of a child with a disability. It identifies a child's unique needs and defines the goals and objectives that guide the delivery of a quality education. This webinar will help school leaders and teachers better understand the elements that make up a well-developed IEP. New schools opening in the fall or new administrators who are unfamiliar with special educational legal requirements particularly benefit from webinar which will be presented by Mary Ahearn and Pam Connolly with the FDLRS Network. Read More

Implementing Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports

Most school staff are familiar with the process of using MTSS to support students who are academically struggling, but the concept is also important when it comes to behavioral supports in school as well. PBIS (Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports) is a system used to support students who may be exhibiting difficult behaviors. This webinar will focus on an overview of the critical components of Tier 1 PBIS, along with examples and resources for implementation. Participants will also learn how to obtain in-depth training and technical assistance on multi-tiered PBIS systems from their statewide PBIS project free of charge. We encourage charter leaders to join the webinar to gain an an increased understanding of the model and how they can develop this at their schools with support from the project. This presentation will be presented by Ms. Catherine Raulerson of the Florida Center for Inclusive Communities who works on Florida's PBS:MTSS Project. Read More

Incident Report

This is a document which can be used to record incidents or injuries to keep a permanent record of incidents which may occur at the school. Read More

Initial Salary Placement Notice

This form is meant to lay out the per-paycheck amount for a new employee so they are clear on the salary they will be paid. Read More

Intermediate Behavior Chart

This is a behavior chart which could be used by schools for students who are exhibiting negative behaviors. This form is geared more towards intermediate students. The form encourages the student to self-reflect on their behavior during the course, as well as provides the teacher with the opportunity to respond.  This data can then be collected by the last teacher who has the student during the day to monitor students progress towards behavioral goals. Read More

Internal Student Class Change Form

This form could be used to document when a student needs to have a course change, to ensure that the change is document, teachers are aware, and that all necessary administrative work is completed prior to the student being moved.  As always, the form should be tweaked to match the internal processes used at your school. Read More
Jun 2016

Introducing and Implementing Charters.Link

The Charter Support Unit has been working to develop a new online compliance system to help facilitate communication between charter schools and their authorizers in Florida.  This online tool allows districts to establish timelines and deadlines for when items must be submitted, allows schools to upload their responses and districts to approve or request additional information.  The tool is ready to be rolled out to districts who are interested in using the system with their schools.  On Thursday, June 9, 2016 the CSU will conduct a training for districts who are interested in learning more, and setting up the system in their district.   The training will be held in the Finance Conference Room at the Main Administrative Building in Osceola County (817 Bill Beck Boulevard, Kissimmee, FL 34744).   We also will be broadcasting the training as a webinar for those unable to attend in person.   The first 30-45 minutes of the training will be a presentation to explain how the system works, and how it can be implemented within the district.  The remaining 90+ minutes will be time for the district participants to begin setting up and using the system, with support from the CSU. Read More

Introducing the Budget Template Tool

The CSU has developed a comprehensive budget template tool which provides users with a question/answer format which automatically takes the answers and develops a comprehensive charter school budget based on the function and object codes outlined the Florida RedBook. Read More

Introducing the CSU

The Charter Support Unit presented the introduction to the CSU presentation below on August 30, ... Read More

Introduction to the Charter Support Unit

The Charter Support Unit was recently renewed for a second year to provide assistance to charter schools through their first contract renewal. This webinar will provide basic information about the background and services offered by the CSU as well as answer any questions participants may have. We also will be open to accepting any suggestions participants may have about the types of services which would be helpful to them. Read More

Invoice Form

Sample invoice form to be used to send an invoice to another party. Read More

It's Not Just A Facebook Page, It's a Communication Plan

Running a charter school requires not only providing a top-notch educational program, but also effectively communicating with the school's stakeholders. This engaging webinar will provide a social media boot camp to learn how to make your school's internal and external communications efforts more thoughtful, strategic, and deliberate. Discover how to create a core statement about your school, develop a social media policy and process, and implement a communications plan that builds your school's online presence. This webinar will be presented by Shaina Cook and Nicole Wilkins of Collaborative Communications. Read More

Item Bank and Testing Platform

The Office of Race to the Top Assessments with the Florida Department of Education has developed the Florida Item Bank and Test Platform (IBTP); a dynamic resource that allows teachers, schools, and districts to build and administer high quality, standards- based, engaging assessments for diagnostic, interim, or summative purposes. This presentation will provide an overview of the IBTP, with information on how to access, navigate, and use the system at the classroom, school, and district levels. Read More

Job Description: Accounting Clerk

Job Description for an accounting clerk if the school has one. Read More

Job Description: Administrative Assistant

Job Description for the school's administrative asssitant, if it has one. Read More

Job Description: Art Teacher

Job Description to use for the school's art teacher. Read More

Job Description: Clerical Assistant

Job Description for a clerical assistant if the school has one. Read More

Job Description: Data Management Technician

Job Description to use for the data management technician or registrar. Read More

Job Description: Dean of Students

Job Description to use for a Dean of Students. Read More

Job Description: Educational Assistant

Job Description for educational assistants or Paraprofessionals at the school. Read More

Job Description: ESE / Gifted Teacher

Job Description for the school's ESE and/or Gifted Teacher. Read More

Job Description: Executive Director

Job Description to for the school's Executive Director, if it has one. Read More

Job Description: Guidance Counselor

Job Description to use for the school's Guidance Counselor Read More

Job Description: HR Resources

Job Description to use for a HR Resources Coordinator Read More

Job Description: Maintenance Coordinator

Job Description to use for the Maintenance Coordinator or custodian. Read More

Job Description: Music Teacher

Job Description to use for the school's music teacher. Read More

Job Description: Office Manager

Job Description for use of the office manager. Read More

Job Description: Parent Volunteer Liason

Job Description to use if you have a parent volunteer liason Read More

Job Description: PE and Health Teacher

Job Description to use for the PE and Health Teacher Read More

Job Description: Principal

Job Description to use for the school's Principal. Read More

Job Description: Reading Coach

Job Description for the school's reading coach. Read More

Job Description: Receptionist

Job Description to use for the receiptionist. Read More

Job Description: Teacher

Job description for a general classroom teacher Read More

Job Description: Title One Teacher

Sample job description for a Title One support teacher, if the school has one. Read More

Job Description: Transitions Teacher

Job Description for a transitions teacher if the school has one. Read More

Key Focus Areas of High Performing Schools

Charter School leaders are challenged with many demands, and often too little time to accomplish them. With the rigorous demands of the Florida Standards, being able to effectively establish priorities is essential to successfully leading a school. This webinar will present specific focus areas that leaders should center on to improve student achievement and the efficiency of the school. Focusing on key areas will result in an increased purpose, a more supportive collaboration among staff members, improved learning for all students, and provide a road map for school improvement. Read More

Keys to Effective Fundraising

Many charter schools throughout the State need to raise funds to help support their program, especially newer schools. Many board members and school leaders do not have the knowledge or experience to run a successful fundraising campaign. However, by following a few simple steps, any school can launch a successful fundraising campaign. As the chairperson and founder of Marco Island Academy, a charter school in Collier County, Ms. Watt lead the school in raising nearly $3 million dollars from community donations in the past 4 years. There are several key steps that have lead to the school's successful fundraising efforts. These include establishing a clear plan, identifying key potential supporters and engaging them in the effort, and meeting with them one on one to ask for the money. This presentation highlighted these steps and how other schools could implement them at their schools. Read More

Know Your Charter Contract

For Charter Schools fully understanding the charter contract is essential. The contract defines the relationship between the district and the school, and the requirements the school must abide by. When charter school leaders reach out for help, usually the first question asked is "what does your contract say?" This presentation hosted by a respected charter school attorney will discuss how to read and understand the contract and some tips to help organize the responsibilities defined therein. Read More

Leading a Robust Mentor Program

How do you provide more leadership opportunities for you students? What is the best way to acclimate incoming new students to your school environment? Is there a quicker way for students to get to know their peers, develop new friendships, and get excited about the school year, especially in a school choice atmosphere or environment? YES there is, put a Mentor Program in place NOW! This webinar will share details on how Florida Southwestern Collegiate High School implemented such a program, and tips on how other schools can replicate the success. Participants receive a a timeline to implement the program and learn how to improve the leadership opportunities for students. The presentation will discuss how to select, train and grow the student leaders. The webinar will be presented by Mr. Greg Winkler who is the HOPE teacher at FSWC and leads their mentorship program. Read More

Legal Handbook

Charter School Leaders and Board Members have a variety of laws and administrative rules they ... Read More

Legal Priorities for New Charter Schools

This presentation was for people or groups who are thinking about submitting a charter application. Mr. Woodring discusses the process and common legal priorities that charter applicants should be aware of as they work to develop their charter application to start a new school. Read More

Legislative Updates

The 2013 Legislature passed several bills that include numerous changes that charter schools operators need to be aware of. These include changes related to the application process, contract negotiations, financial statements, closure protocols, and the distribution of federal funds. Join us for this informative webinar where we will highlight the legislative changes you need to know about that are anticipated to go into effect on July 1. Read More

Links to Attorney General Legal Opinions related to Charter Schools

Last Updated July 21, 2013 The list below is a list of Attorney General opinions ... Read More

Maintenance Request Form

This sample form can be used for staff members to request maintenance assistance and to help the maintenance staff keep track of the requests being received. Read More
Mar 2016

Maximum Tech, Minimum Fuss

The best edtech-tools are time-efficient and propel learning into interactive experiences filled with active participation, creation, collaboration, and reflection. Join Richard Brummer, Technology Coordinator at Ben Gamla Palm Beach Charter School, for a hands-on and engaging webinar that will model some of very best “must-have” tech-tools, which can be actioned for maximum effect with the least amount of fuss. You’ll wonder how you ever survived without them. Read More

Media Release

This is a form that parents can sign to give the school permission to photograph or record students. Read More

Medication Administration Incident Report Form

This is a form schools can use to record incidents which occur from mistakes with the administration of medications. Read More

Medication Administration Log Form

This is a form schools can use to log the administration of medication to students. Read More

Mileage Reimbursement Form

This is a document that schools can use for employees to record their mileage and request reimbursement. Read More

Money Receipt Log

This is a sample form a school could implement to record money coming into the school. Read More

Negotiating a Facilities Lease for Charter Schools

The two largest expenses charter schools face are typically employees and facilities. Negotiating a favorable lease is essential to not only ensuring that the school is paying an appropriate amount for their space, but also to be sure they are protected into the future and can use the space for the wide variety of activities the school may eventually want to participate in. The lease agreement is typically a complex legal document with many parts. This webinar will discuss what you should consider when you are negotiating (or renegotiating) your lease with your landlord, and key indicators you will want to pay attention to. The presentation will be presented by Mr. Jeff Wood, an attorney who specializes in working with charter schools throughout the state. Read More

New Hire Checklist

This sample form can be used to organize all of the paper and tasks which need to be completed when a new employee is hired by the school. Read More

New Salary Schedule Requirements

Florida Statute 1012.22 requires that schools develop a performance salary schedule by July 1, 2014. Charter Schools are not exempt from this new requirement. This presentation will review the legal requirements, and share a potential template that schools may wish to consider for developing their new performance salary schedule. The presentation will be given by Mr. Jeff Wood, attorney at law and Curtis Fuller from the Charter Support Unit. Read More

New School Checklist

The new school checklist was developed for newly approved charter schools working to open a ... Read More
Jul 2017

New School Institute - July 13, 2017

The July 13, 2017 was the fourth training as part of the 2017 New School ... Read More
Oct 2016

New School Institute - November 2, 2016

New School Institute To learn more about the New School Institute, please visit: This ... Read More

New School Institute Training 1

The Charter Support Unit was excited to present the first New School Institute training on ... Read More

New School Institute Training 4

The third training of the New School Institute was held on July 13, 2016 in ... Read More

New Schools Check List Webinar

Getting organized with a “To Do” checklist. There’s a lot to do before you open the doors of your new school. Make sure you’re prepared by going through a simple check list that will ensure you the best possible start. Read More

New State Financial Reporting Template

In October the State Board of Education approved an amendment to Rule 6A-1.0081 regarding Monthly Financial Statements and Financial Conditions for charter schools. This presentation will give a brief description of the rule, and demonstrate how to get the information for the new model reports from Quickbooks. Updates to the charter school statutes last year indicated that all charter schools will be required to use the new forms approved by the Department. Read More

Parent Satisfaction Survey

This is a sample parent satisfaction that a school can use to gauge parent satisfaction at their school.  We recommend this survey is used each spring so that the data can be compared over time.  The questions on the second page can be customized to focus on issues that the school is focusing on or that match with the school's vision. Read More

Parent Volunteer Survey

Parental involvement is one indicator of school success. Schools who are strategic about volunteering will try to match volunteer opportunities to the strengths of parents, and to utilize this as a way to increase involvement. This parent survey helps schools to identify parent skills and availability to help make those matches. Read More

Parents and Charter Schools

Parents and Charter Schools: Achieving Excellence through Innovation. A key component for a successful charter school is parental participation and looking to innovative ways your school can achieve a level of excellence. Read More

Performance Based Salary Schedules

Florida Statute 1012.22 requires that schools develop a performance salary schedule by July 1, 2014. ... Read More

Petty Cash Reconciliation

This document can be used to track and monitor petty cash if the school is utilizing petty cash. Read More

Planning for Professional Development

Most schools claim that they want to create life-long learners of their students. If this is your goal, professional development should be an essential component of your program so that our teachers are demonstrating life-long learning. Dr. Tim Kitts, Chief Education Officer of Bay Haven Academy will present this webinar about how to ensure professional development is a primary focus with school staff. The presentation will give suggestions on how to organize and plan a comprehensive professional development plan for the entire school year which is focused on results. Read More

Preparing for and running student lotteries

Charter Schools are required to ensure that all applicants shall have an equal chance of being admitted through a random selection process. What exactly is required for the lottery process? The presentation will focus on those legal requirements and compliance that charter schools should be aware of. It will also address Florida based preferences, written lottery policy guidelines, and the future of weighted lotteries in Florida. Read More

Preparing for Survey Two - Ensuring Your School Is Funded

The Florida Educational Finance Program provides funds to public schools, including charter schools. The funding is based on the data reported during the state reporting weeks. The first reporting week is quickly appraoching falling on October 12-16 this year. It is essential that charter schools carefully ensure all data is entered and reported correctly in order to receive accurate funding from the state. Just having the students enrolled does not guarantee you will receive accurate funding, there are many components to the funding formula. This presentation provided a broad overview of the reporting requirements, reminding you of some of the essential points to remember as you ensure your data is correct during survey week. Ms, Kendra Jahnke of the Department of Education's Bureau of PK-12 Education Information Services will lead this discussion to help schools prepare for Survey Two. Read More

Preparing for your Audit

Florida statutes contain several requirements for Charter Schools when it comes to conducting an annual audit. The laws state not only that an audit must be conducted by have specific requirements about how that auditor must be selected. This presntation will walk you through the process of selecting an auditor ranging from the bid process to what questions to ask and what to look for. We will also cover some basic information on what documents you want to start preparing to ensure that the audit process will go smoothly once the fiscal year has ended. Read More

Primary Behavior Chart

This is a behavior chart which could be used by schools for students who are exhibiting negative behaviors. This form is geared more towards primary students. The form encourages the student to self-reflect on their behavior during the course, as well as provides the teacher with the opportunity to respond.  This data can then be collected by the last teacher who has the student during the day to monitor students progress towards behavioral goals. Read More

Procurement Documentation Form

This is a sample document to be used when the school is purchasing items. Read More

Property Inventory List

Inventory List(82 KiB) This document is available as either an Excel version, or in ... Read More

Public Comment Registration Form

We recommend that each Governing Board approve a policy with regards to public comment at board meetings.  This form could be used for members of the public to register to speak and provide public comment at such a meeting. Read More

Public Meeting Notice

Sample document to use to publically post a meeting notice to comply with government in the sunshine requirements. Read More

Public Records Laws

Charter schools are subject to Florida’s Public Records Laws. Almost any document the school creates from financial reports, to emails to payroll reports are subject to public records requests. Join us for this presentation presented by Daniel Mantzaris of de Beaubien, Knight, Simmons, Mantzaris & Neal, LLP which will cover the definition of public records, how charter schools should respond to public records request, how records should be maintained and what the consequences of non-compliance could be. Read More

Public Records Laws

Charter schools are subject to Florida’s Public Records Laws. Almost any document the school creates from financial reports, to emails to payroll reports are subject to public records requests. Join us for this presentation presented by Daniel Mantzaris of de Beaubien, Knight, Simmons, Mantzaris & Neal, LLP which will cover the definition of public records, how charter schools should respond to public records request, how records should be maintained and what the consequences of non-compliance could be. Read More

Publicity Waiver

This is a sample form that a school may wish to adopt to obtain parent permission to take pictures of students and use those pictures for school publicity. Read More

Purchase Order Form

This purchase order form can be used if a vendor requires a purchase order to ensure a purchase has been approved. Purchase Orders can also be used to accrue funds before they are spent. Read More
Feb 2015

Quickbooks Chart of Accounts

Charter Schools are required to use the accounting classifications as defined in the Red Book ... Read More

Release of Information

This is a document a school can use to get permission to release or obtain student information from another entity. This is especially important with regards to student private and HIPA requirements. Read More

Renewal Toolkit

The Charter Renewal Toolkit is a reference document intended to help schools organize their corporate ... Read More

Restorative Practice: Breaking the Out-of-School Suspension Cycle through Restorative Circles

Developing a comprehensive behavioral plan for a charter school is essential to ensure smooth operations. This presentation will look specifically discuss how to lead "Restorative Circles". Participants will gain a deeper understanding of the need to reach and teach ALL students by pulling them in (Restorative Approach) rather than pushing them out (Out of school suspension). This presentation will be especially helpful for schools who are developing or revamping their school wide behavioral plan to meet the needs of your students. Read More

RFP - Alarm Monitoring

RFP (Request for Proposal) form to use to solicit bids to find a company to monitor the school's security system. Read More

RFP - Back Office Services

RFP (Request for Proposal) form to use to solicit bids to acquire a payroll process / employee leasing company. Read More

RFP - Insurance

RFP (Request for Proposal) form to use to solicit bids to insurance policies in alignment with the school's charter contract. Read More

RFP - Intercom System

RFP (Request for Proposal) to solicit bids for an intercom system to be used within a charter school. Read More

RFP - Security Surveillance

RFP (Request for Proposal) to solicit bids for security / surveillance systems to be used at a charter school. Read More

RFP: Accounting Services

RFP (Request for Proposal) to solicit bids for accounting and financial services for a charter school. Read More

RFP: Auditor

RFP (Request for Proposals) to solicit bids from auditors in compliance with Florida's statutory requirements that a bid process be used to select an auditor. Read More

RFP: Payroll Processing Services

RFP (Request for Proposals) for soliciting bids for payroll processing services. Read More

RFP: School Uniforms

RFP (Request for Proposals) to solicit bids for students' school uniforms. Read More

RFP: Transportation Services

RFP (Request for Proposal) to solicit bids from transportation companies to acquire student bussing services. Read More

Roadmap for Successful Technology Implementation in New & Growing Schools

Having a well-defined IT roadmap is critical to ensuring your charter schools are using technology strategically. Technology is evolving daily and charter schools must innovate in order to stay ahead of the curve in the classroom. When charter schools technology infrastructure begins to lag, it can hinder the learning environment. Defining an IT roadmap helps charter schools create scalable, secure and future-ready IT environments able to meet the demands of the changing technology landscape. This webinar will give participants the ability to address key areas of IT environments that could be better managed and supported with a unified, well-defined IT roadmap. The webinar will be presented by Michael Hendrick from mindSHIFT, and will review the stages of implementing an IT roadmap and give them the tools to start looking at their current IT infrastructure and make adjustments as needed. Read More

Room Inventory List

This sample form can be used for teachers to complete an inventory listing of the materials contained within their room. This is most often done at either the very start or very end of the school year. Read More

Sample Board Meeting Packet Template

The CSU recommends that the Governing Board setup a process whereby they receive pertinent information regarding the board meeting agenda, reports, and agenda items a designed amount of time before each governing board meeting.  This document provides a potential template for organizing that materials.  These packets are typically prepared by school staff (most often the school's Principal) prior to each Board meeting. Read More

Sample Compensation Manual

This document provides information on how to calculate payroll information for employees, especially salaried employees whose salaries are paid over 12-months, but who may work less than 12-months out of the year.   It provides formulas for calculating the final pay paychecks for employees who leave prior to the end of the school year, as well as calculating per-check amounts for those employees who start working at the school after the first day of school. The Charter Support Unit recommends that Boards adopt a document similar to this, or incorporate this into their policy manual to ensure that employees understand the payroll processes used at the school. Read More

Sample Policy Manual

This sample policy manual provides a sample comprehensive policy manual that schools can use to craft their own policy manual. It is strongly recommended that schools do not just adopt this policy manual, but instead use it as a reference to develop a policy manual that will work well with the school in accordance with your charter application, charter contract and desires of the governing board. Read More

Sample Principal Contract

Sample employee contract for the school's principal of executive director. Read More

Sample School Behavior Confirmation

This document is a sample list of behaviors which may require student consequences and a list of potential consequences for those behaviors. It includes excerpts from a bullying policy which the parents also should acknowledge. Read More

Sample Teacher Contract

Sample Contract to use for teachers at the school. Read More

SBLT / MTSS Request Form

This is a form a school could adapt to use to allow teachers to bring a student to the attention of the school based leadership team and begin the MTSS process for a student who may be exhibiting difficulties. Read More

SBLT Parent Notification Form

This is a sample letter which a teacher could use to notify a student's parent or guardian that the school's school based leadership team will be meeting to discuss the student. Read More

SBLT Problem Solving Action Plan

This document could be used by a school based leadership team to implement an MTSS process to brainstorm potential interventions which may be effective for an individual student and then to decide upon a course of action, and to document the follow up from the meeting at regular intervals after the meeting. Read More

School Improvement Plans - Administrative Rule Summary (6A-1.099827)

This document is a summary of the administrative rule 6A-1.099827 which was approved August 21, 2012.  This rule defines the requirements for charter schools to complete a School Improvement Plan, and potential Corrective Actions which can be taken by schools who are required to do so. Read More

School Safety

The presentation focused on the connection between educational success for students and the school safety climate. The presenter focused on emergency planning and the types of plans schools should have in place to address potential crisis situations. The webinar also focused on providing attendees information on best practices as they relate to providing a safe and secure learning environment. The presenter was Curtis S. Lavarello, the Executive Director of the School Safety Advocacy Council. Read More

School Spotlight: River City Science Academy

River City Science Academy is a public charter school that opened in 2007 with the focus on providing best-in-class STEM education to students in Duval County. The school is committed to graduating every student college ready through the variety of educational programs they offer at the school. The school’s mission is “To instill a love for learning in a structured and nurturing environment through engaging and stimulating learning opportunities.” Join us for a presentation by Principal Ozan Sipahioglu who will walk through how the school builds the nurturing environment at the school, and some of the tools the school uses to help staff stay connected to each, students and parents. Read More

SOP: Building Key Assignment

Standard Operating Procedure for assigning and checking out keys to the building. Read More

SOP: Fingerprinting

Standard Operating Procedure to use to ensure staff members are appropriate fingerprinted and background checks completed. Read More

SOP: Incoming and Outgoing Mail / Delivery Procedures

Standard Operating Procedure for dealing with incoming and outgoing mail to ensure the separation of duties with regards to accepting payments and invoices. Read More

SOP: Purchase Orders

Standard Operating Procedure for issuing Purchase Orders to purchase items. Read More

Spotlight: Athenian Academy Charter School

Athenian Academy Charter School opened in 2000, and has just started their 16th year educating students in Pinellas County, and have opened in a brand new facility this year. When it opened, the school was first Greek immersion charter in the United States. Today, Athenian Academy’s curriculum has evolved into dual foreign languages including both Greek and Spanish. The school's leader attributes a large part of the success of Athenian Academy towards the strong teams and professionals on staff. In her words “I make it a point to surround myself with people who are excellent at what they do. What makes this school work is that they do things better than I can.” This spotlight presentation discussed the school and explained their efforts to build effective teams within their staff to ensure student success. Read More

Spotlight: Bay Haven Charter Academy

Bay Haven Charter Academy opened in 2001 with just over 200 students and has grown into a network of schools serving nearly 3,000 students, receiving almost exclusively "A" grades from the state grading system each year for every school.  The school credits it's success to building their school on philosophical constructs based on best practice, and what is best for kids. One of the keys to their program is to "Bayhavenize" all of their stake holders from students to parents to staff members.  Each summer the school hosts a New Teacher Boot Camp to orientate their new staff members to the ideals that have made Bay Haven a success.  This presentation was led by Dr. Tim Kitts regarding their teacher orientation program, and how they ensure their staff live up to the High Expectations/High Achievement the school has for employees. Read More

Spotlight: Brooks DeBartolo Collegiate High School

Brooks DeBartolo Collegiate High School is a public charter school opened in 2007. Founded by Pro Football Hall of Fame Bucs Linebacker Derrick Brooks and the Edward J. DeBartolo Family, the school has always been focused on the goal of providing a high quality collegiate educational program to its students. The school uses a variety of methods to customize their educational approaches to reach each individual student, and has experienced fantastic success, having gone from a "D" in its second year to five consecutive "A"s from the State of Florida. This presentation focused on this successful school and how the Principal, Ms. Kristine Bennett uses her strong organizational skills to plan the school. The talk was focused on what leaders can do to plan for the myriad of deadlines and requirements they need to focus on, while still allowing them to stay focused on the important task of the school's academic success. Read More

Spotlight: Gulf Coast Academy of Science and Technology

Gulf Coast Academy of Science and Technology is a public charter school that opened in 2003. The school has been awarded an “A” by the State’s school grading system for the last 11 years. The school’s mission is to provide a unique education through weekly field experiences integrated with a hands-on advanced middle school curriculum. Gulf Coast Academy staff members will be sharing tips on how they’ve been able to stay focused on their original mission, and make sure that all of their staff are on board with the unique instructional practices employed at the school. Read More

Spotlight: Sigsbee Charter School / Place Based Education

Sigsbee Charter School is a public charter school located on the Naval Air Station Key West (NASKW). Sigsbee is one of only a handful of charter schools in the United States located on and focused on servicing children of military families in grade k-8. The school is a model not only with regards to being a high performing charter school in the state of Florida, but is also frequently studied by federal officials for replication among other military bases throughout the country. Despite the highly transient population, the school has earned an A rating in every year it was assessed. It has been awarded two substantial grants from the Department of Defense Education Act and is currently working under a Dissemination Grant for Best Practices awarded by the Department of Education. In this presentation Principal Eli Jannes will talk about the unique traits that make Sigsbee so successful. She will focus on Place-Based Education, a tool used to increase engagement and achievement while taking advantage of one's unique environmental and community partnerships. Read More

Spotlight: St. Petersburg Collegiate High School

St. Petersburg Collegiate High School has just opened their doors for their twelfth year. The school offers high school students the opportunity to graduate with both a high school diploma and an Associate’s Degree from St. Petersburg College. Their vision is to cultivate motivated learners, develop critical thinkers and empower visionary leaders. In order to do this, the school has built a culture around supporting and empowering their students to be successful on a college campus. This spotlight presentation focused on how SPCHS built this successful culture. School staff shared how they work with students to build their schedules, provide guidance and counseling and cultivate leadership within their students. Read More

Staff Computer Sign Out Agreement

This sample form could be used to sign out computers to staff members and warn them that they are responsible for the school's equipment while it is in their possession. Read More

Staff Coverage Form

This is a form that schools could use if they are implementing a process allowing teachers to cover for each other for situations such as doctors appointments.  The CSU recommends that if the school is utilizing this type of a process that some documentation is put in place to ensure that individual teachers are not taking advantage of the situation. Read More

Standards for Effective Charter School Governance

While a great board is not the only ingredient for success, it is essential to the recipe, great schools need great boards. This webinar will represent the best thinking of charter school leaders, governance experts, researchers, and practitioners on the most important responsibilities of charter school boards. Participants will learn the foundations of governance for charter schools, understand the roles and responsibilities of serving on a charter school board, learn best practices and participate in discussions to bring the standards to life. This presentation will be presented by Debbie Lister of Charter Board Partners. Read More

Strategic Planning 101

Unless you know where you are going, you’ll never know if you’ve arrived. Strategic Planning is the process of envisioning where you want to be as an organization, and building action steps to get there. As each charter school matures, strategic planning helps you break out of just the day-to-day focus of the early operational years to a strategic, prioritized approach for long-term sustainability and growth. The presenter, Mark Cannon, has a dozen years of experience in the charter school movement in Florida and nationally as a governance and strategic planning consultant. In this webinar, he will discuss the elements of an effective strategic plan and provide suggestions for charter school leaders and board members on how to carry out a strategic planning process. Read More

Student Behavior Documentation Log

This is a log document which can be used by school staff to record incidents with regards to a specific student. This type of a log is particularly beneficial when starting the MTSS process to collect data regarding a student's behavior prior to meeting with a school based leadership team in order to identify specific behaviors to target through the MTSS process. Read More

Student Disciplinary Form

This sample form can be used by schools to document student consequences and disciplinary issues. Read More

Student Emergency Release and Medical Information

This sample form is form the school can adapt to collect necessary medical an emergency release information for students. Schools should adopt (or use the district's) form which does receive permission for the school to get emergency medical treatment for students. Schools should also carefully consider a process for ensuring these documents can be easily obtained in the case of an emergency. Read More

Student Satisfaction Survey

This is a sample survey you may wish to use for students.  This survey is geared toward intermediate or older students.  The school can customize the survey to match the priorities the school is focusing on or to obtain specific information they wish to have from their students. Read More

Student Think It Over Forms

This is a form that was used by one school to give students when they needed to be prompted to think about their involvement in a particular situation.  This was used when students received a detention and was required as an exit ticket before students could return to class, but the use of such a form should match the overall mission and processes utilized at each individual school. Read More

Student Withdrawal Form - Parent Completes

Form for parents to complete if they are withdrawing their student from the school. Read More

Student Withdrawal Form - School Completes

Form for the school to complete internally to ensure and document that all of the tasks to withdraw a student are completed. Read More

Summary of 1012.31 - Personnel Files

According to Florida Statute (1012.31), the personnel files for public school employees are eligible for public inspection, and certain requirements exist for the process to add additional information into the employee record.  This document provides a summary of 1012.31 and what pieces of a personnel files are exempt from public records requests. Read More

Supporting the Governing Board as an Administrator

A charter school administrator serves not only the traditional educational leadership role, but also the role of a CEO of a non-profit organization. This often means coordinating the activities of, and interacting with, the Governing Board. While this is an essential part of the responsibilities, it is not something traditionally covered in educational leadership programs. This presentation will talk about the balance between coordinating the Governing Board as an employee of the Board, and ideas on how to facilitate Board Meetings in an effective way. Read More

Teacher Evaluation Requirements of the Student Success Act

In 2011 the Florida Legislature passed a bill commonly referred to as SB736, otherwise known as the "Student Success Act."  This bill was signed into law in 2011, and altered the way teacher evaluations occur in Florida.  It required that schools develop a performance evaluation system based on specific state requirements, along with a pay-for-performance component.  This document describes the teacher evaluation components described in Florida Statute 1012.34.  Click here to access the information sheet about 1012.22(1)(c) regarding pay for performance. Read More

Textbook / Material Evaluation Matrix

Form to use to help with evaluating curriculum materials such as textbooks. Provides a numeric rank of materials to objectively compare multiple products. Read More

Thank You For Donation Letter & Charitable Receipt

DescriptionThis sample letter could be used to send thank yous to donors to the school and to provide them for a tax receipt for their contribution. Read More

The importance of data reporting to ensure full FTE funding

The Florida Educational Finance Program provides funds to public schools, including charter schools.  The funding is based on the data reported during the state reporting weeks.  The first of which is October 8-12 this year.  Ensuring you have the data entered properly is essential to ensuring you receive all of the funds you are entitled to.  Even if you have the students in the seats at your school, you must have them reported correctly to receive funds. Dr. Andrew Binns was formerly the director of FTE & Student Reporting for the School District of Palm Beach County, he and a panel of other experts will provide tips for charter school leaders to help prepare for FTE week. This presentation will be specifically geared towards new schools and new educational leaders facing FTE reporting for the first time. Read More

The Life Cycle of Charter School Financing

Charters have been operating for over 20 years, and access to facilities is still one of the biggest challenges charter schools face. As the charter school market has grown, Financing Options have grown as well and now charter schools have more than a few options to consider. This session will discuss the various options available to charters and the best practices to help get the facility to match your needs today and accommodate your growth for tomorrow. You will come away with an understanding of various options (Developer Financing, CDFI Lending, Bank Financing, and Long-Term Tax-Exempt Bond Financing) to determine what is best fit for your charter school as you plan for your future. Read More

The RIGHT way to hire

Now is the time to start recruiting, interviewing and offering positions to your teachers if you have not already done so. During this presentation we will talk about some free tools to charter schools to recruit staff, processes to organize the applications you have received and some legal potholes to avoid when you start hiring your additional staff members. Read More

The Road from Leasing to Owning - Charter School Facilities

Finding a permanent home for a charter school is one of the most complicated tasks the school will face. Options abound for the facility itself and the financing of those facilities. This presentation will share the various options which are available for facilities and financing from one school's experience moving from leasing, renovating existing buildings and developing new facilities. The school has had land lords, developers, and obtained bond financing. The webinar will be presented by Richard Moreno of Building Hope and Greg McKenna of BB&T Bank. Read More

The Role of Insurance for Charter Schools

Charter Schools face very unique exposures to risk on a daily basis. Ignorance of these exposures is not a valid legal defense. Understanding methods in which to minimize or ways to transfer risk is essential. Insurance is a practical option to providing a level of protection against financial loss for school operators, administrators, and employees. Please join us for an informative presentation on the exposures Charter Schools face and the role insurance & risk management plays in, not only satisfying County School District requirements, but also providing peace of mind. This presentation is for new and experienced school leaders and employees. All are welcomed to attend. Read More

Threat Assessment Form

This form can be used to document an investigation when a student is causing issues or a threat may lead to police/law enforcement intervention with a student.  This form should be tweaked to match the internal processes the school uses to deal with such issues. Read More

Tips for Effective Board Functioning

An effective governing board is an essential component to a successful charter school.  Operating the governing board efficiently is not an easy task.  This presentation will cover a variety of important topics ranging from how to recruit and retain members, how to use committees to make meetings more efficient, and how to set agendas and manage board meeting time.  This presentation will be very beneficial to board members themselves, but also for school leaders who are often tasked with the responsibility of staffing the governing board. Read More

Title I, Part A Basics

How to ensure that all children have a fair and equal opportunity to obtain a high-quality education and reach, at a minimum, proficiency on State academic achievement standards and assessments. This free webinar will be presented by Sonya Morris- Chief of Federal Educational programs with the Department of Education. Read More

Title IX Compliance

Understanding how each individual charter school that offers athletics must comply with Title IX and are evaluated on their own compliance without regard to services provided by the their school District. Read More

Transportation 101

Florida statutes requires that " transportation is not a barrier to equal access for all students residing within a reasonable distance of the charter school." This webinar will focus on what school leaders need to know before you select a transportation company for your school. This webinar was presented by Karen O'Brien of Assured Transportation. Read More

Transportation Essentials

Florida statute requires that: “The charter school and the sponsor shall cooperate in making arrangements ... Read More

Understanding Your Required Financial Documents

Accounting and financial reporting for charter schools are complicated and often counter-intuitive. This webinar will focus on how to understand the basics of these financial reports. This presentation will be particularly beneficial for Governing Board members and new administrators who are unfamiliar with the accounting systems typically used by charter schools. The webinar will review the revenue estimating workbook, what should be in the annual budget, how to examine financial reports and what to expect with year-end financial reporting and audits. The webinar will be presented by Bill Hunter and Christy Simmons, partners with Hunter and Simmons, CPAs. Read More

Unpaid Leave Calculator

This form is meant to be a way to document for employees who are going on unpaid leave how that leave will affect their paychecks once they return to work. Read More
Apr 2017

Using the CSU Budget Template for Charter Applications

The Charter Support Unit has developed a comprehensive budget template designed to help create a complete budget. Many groups writing charter applications have used the template to write new charter applications. This webinar will be presented to speak to groups using the template to write a charter application. The presentation will discuss the importance of ensuring alignment between your charter application’s narrative and the budget itself. It will talk about common issues groups have had while using the budget tool, and will discuss some of the key indicators districts might look at while reviewing your application’s budget. Read More

We're getting sued ... what should we do?

The unfortunately truth is that we live in a litigious society. As a not-for-profit corporation, charter schools are not exempt from law suits, and should have a plan for how they respond if they are ever sued. When the school is served regarding a lawsuit, what exactly should the next steps be? What do school administrators and Governing Boards need to do, and not do, to ensure they are protected moving forward and defending the school. When should an attorney be called, and how much can the school expect to spend? These are all variables that should be considered when developing a plan for responding to potential law suits. Join us to learn more for this presentation by Amber Ashton, a senior associate attorney with de Beaubien, Knight, Simmons, Mantzaris & Neal, LLP. Read More
Dec 2016

We've Attained, Now Maintain- Strategies for Continued School Success

Once you get your school up and running, it is important to focus on developing systems to ensure you can maintain your success into the future. This presentation will provide step by step solutions and strategies to build and maintain academic school success. The presentation will include information on a low-performing school became a high-performing school, and the strategies they used to maintain this success. Participants in this webinar will receive practical tips they can use to ensure future success. Read More

What is Rigor and How Do I Get It?

Rigor is the most talked-about topic when discussing education and standards-based instruction and assessment. Most educators are still confused about what rigor is and what it looks like. This webinar will examine the idea using different models that demonstrate complexity, such as Marzano and Webb to help participants gain a better understanding of what rigor looks like, why it is necessary, and how can we increase its use during instruction. The webinar will provide ideas to teachers, and administrators to help ensure students are experiencing a higher level of rigor throughout the educational experience. The webinar will be presented by Ms. Melissa Prado Aguilar, the President of Phoenix Educational Support Services, LLC. Read More

Working Effectively with EMO/CMOs

This presentation will cover a variety of topics for schools who may already or who may be considering working with either an Educational Management Organization or a Charter Management Organization. Topics will include a variety of topics ranging from understanding your contract and pricing to how to ensure the operations are being handled appropriately. Read More

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