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Florida charter school leader to be Inducted into the national Charter School Hall of Fame

Florida Consortium of Public Charter Schools (FCPCS) Congratulates Academica President Fernando Zulueta

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla., (May 15, 2019) – A longtime leader in the Florida charter school movement will be inducted into the Charter School Hall of Fame by the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools.  Fernando Zulueta, who is President of Miami-based Academica, is one of three individuals who will be inducted at the National Conference of the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, scheduled for June 30 to July 3 in Las Vegas, Nev.

In 1997, Zulueta joined parents and community members to establish one of Florida’s first charter schools, Somerset Neighborhood School, in Miramar, Fla.  He went on to found Academica in 1999; it is a network that has grown to more than 180 charter schools serving approximately 90,000 students across the country.  

Academica’s schools have been recognized as National Blue Ribbon Schools, ranked among U.S. News & World Report's Best High Schools and College Success Award winners by Great Schools.

Zulueta’s partnerships have helped to bring more resources and visibility to the charter school movement.  He founded the highly successful and sought-after Sports Leadership Academy Management (SLAM) charter schools with entertainer Amando Christian Perez (Pitbull), catching the attention of celebrities including Kanye West, who toured one of the schools with Zulueta and Pitbull last year.

“The Florida Consortium of Public Charter Schools congratulates Fernando Zulueta on this important career achievement and national honor,” said Robert Haag, President of the Florida Consortium of Public Charter Schools (FCPCS).  “We recognize his major impact on the charter school movement in Florida and beyond.”

Each year since 2007, the National Alliance has welcomed a new group of charter school leaders into the Charter School Hall of Fame.  This year’s honorees join 41 individuals and organizations, all nominated by their peers for their long-term commitment and contributions to the charter school movement.

About the Florida Consortium of Public Charter Schools

The Florida Consortium of Public Charter Schools (FCPCS) is the leading charter school membership association in the state, with a membership of nearly 75 percent of all operating charter schools.  Since its inception in 1999, FCPCS has been dedicated to creating a national model of high quality, accredited public charter schools that are student-centered and performance-driven.  FCPCS provides a wide array of technical support, mentoring, training, networking, and purchasing services to its membership, as well as serving as an advocate for all Florida public charter schools.

 

U.S. News & World Report Magazine Ranks Three Florida Charter High Schools Among Nation's Top 50 Charter High Schools

Florida Consortium of Public Charter Schools (FCPCS) Congratulates the three Florida Schools

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla., (May 8, 2019) – Three of Florida’s public charter high schools have been ranked in the top 50 of all charter high schools in the United States, according to rankings prepared and recently released by U.S. News & World Report magazine.

The three Florida charter high schools and their 2019 rankings among U.S. charter high schools are:

  • International Studies Charter High School, Miami, ranked number 11 among U.S. charter high schools and number 41 among all U.S. high schools.  421 students are enrolled in grades nine through 12 at the school.  It ranked fourth on the list of all Florida high schools, according to U.S. News.
  • Archimedean Upper Conservatory Charter School, Miami, ranked number 17 among U.S. charter high schools and number 79 among all U.S. high schools.  The school has a 100 percent graduation rate, according to U.S. News.  It ranked ninth on the list of all Florida high schools.
  • Doral Performing Arts and Entertainment Academy, Doral, Fla., ranked number 37 among U.S. charter high schools and number 146 among all U.S. high schools.  It ranked fifteenth among all Florida high schools.

“The Florida Consortium of Public Charter Schools congratulates Florida’s three top 50 charter high schools and salutes their students, teachers and administrators for their truly remarkable accomplishments,” said Robert Haag, President of the Florida Consortium of Public Charter Schools.  “This is a great opportunity to increase visibility and recognition of public charter schools in our state.

The complete list of 2019 rankings of the nation’s charter high schools by U.S. News & World Report is available at this link: https://www.usnews.com/education/best-high-schools/national-rankings/charter-school-rankings

About the Florida Consortium of Public Charter Schools

The Florida Consortium of Public Charter Schools (FCPCS) is the leading charter school membership association in the state, with a membership of nearly 75 percent of all operating charter schools.  Since its inception in 1999, FCPCS has been dedicated to creating a national model of high quality, accredited public charter schools that are student-centered and performance-driven.  FCPCS provides a wide array of technical support, mentoring, training, networking, and purchasing services to its membership, as well as serving as an advocate for all Florida public charter schools.

 

Three Florida Schools Named to Charter School Honor Roll for 2019

All Three Schools are Members of the Florida Consortium of Public Charter Schools (FCPCS)

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla., (May 7, 2019) – Three Florida charter schools have been named to the Charter School Honor Roll, an annual awards program presented by Charter School Capital of Portland, Oregon.

The three Florida charter schools are:

  • East Tampa Academy, serving students in levels VPK, K, 1 and 2 and located at 4309 N. 34th Street in Tampa.  East Tampa Academy was named to the Charter School Honor Roll for its community service.
  • Imagine Schools – Chancellor Campus, located at 3333 High Ridge Road in Boynton Beach.  The school serves 1,025 students in grades K through 8.  It was awarded the Charter School Honor Roll designation for its positive school climate.
  • Manatee School for the Arts, located at 700 Haben Boulevard, Palmetto, Florida.  It was honored in the category of school growth.  It has the highest rate of graduation of all high schools in Manatee County.

The Charter School Honor Roll is a celebration of charter schools nationwide that exemplify exceptional accomplishments in any of the following categories: school growth, student achievement, community service, school leadership and positive school climate.  Thirty charter schools across the nation were recognized and named to the Charter School Honor Roll for 2019.

All three of the winning Florida charter schools are members of the Florida Consortium of Public Charter Schools (FCPCS).

“We are proud to congratulate East Tampa Academy, Imagine Schools Chancellor Campus and Manatee School for the Arts for achieving this significant honor,” said Robert Haag, President of the Florida Consortium of Public Charter Schools.

The complete list of charter schools named to the 2019 Charter School Honor Roll is available at this link: https://charterschoolcapital.org/2019HonorRoll?utm_campaign=AprilNewsletter&utm_medium=Email&utm_source=HonorRoll&mkt_tok=eyJpIjoiWVRSaE1ESTNNMkZsWWpSaiIsInQiOiJibm4wNkRQNTNzbzl4SFEzdXR2aVVodmZpNkZoXC85NzZrTFFUZXdxUCs0TFY2aGFZOTdsbjVrOXlrVkdRUjc3bCt3OGpxMW1SSDVsYUZsM3RGNXVTYlwvWThUVDhSbllPSWVoTUQ3ZTl4SFowM284R0Z4VjBDdlpMTGNJV2lia3VHIn0%3D

About Charter School Capital, Inc.

Charter School Capital is proud to deliver access to growth capital and facilities financing to charter schools nationwide.  In the past 10 years, Charter School Capital has invested more than $1.8 billion to more than 600 charter schools, helping them provide a high-quality education to more than one million students across the country.

About the Florida Consortium of Public Charter Schools

The Florida Consortium of Public Charter Schools (FCPCS) is the leading charter school membership association in the state, with a membership of nearly 75 percent of all operating charter schools.  Since its inception in 1999, FCPCS has been dedicated to creating a national model of high quality, accredited public charter schools that are student-centered and performance-driven.  FCPCS provides a wide array of technical support, mentoring, training, networking, and purchasing services to its membership, as well as serving as an advocate for all Florida public charter schools.

 

 

School choice harms public schools? The numbers don’t add up

Where is the evidence that spending more money on schools produces better education?

Re-posted from an op ed column posted April 21, 2019 to Florida Politics Blog

By Lloyd Brown

One of the strangest notions bandied about in the media is that school choice — giving kids equal opportunity — is somehow “draining money” from public schools.

First, you have to ask: why would that matter even if it were true? Taxpayer money is supposed to go to educate children, not provide well-paid jobs for adults.

Then you would have to ask: Where is the evidence that spending more money on schools produces better education?

Next, you would ask: Why should schools be paid to educate students who are not in their school?

Other questions would include: Isn’t it the parents’ business where their child goes to school? And isn’t it important if the child gets a better education at less cost?

Only 395,726 kids in Florida get school choice with state aid.

Florida TaxWatch compared the traditional district school cost to the cost of charter schools and tax-credit scholarships.

The study found a per-pupil cost for Florida schools of $10,856.

TaxWatch estimated per charter school student funding for 2017-18 to be $7,476. There were 295,214 students last year.

The average maximum scholarship available through the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship Program, which allows children from less affluent families to transfer from failing public schools to private schools, was $6,447 for 2017-18. There are 100,512 students this year.

Thus, the total cost to educate them this year is about $2.8 billion.

Compare that to the cost of K-12 schools and it amounts to 10 percent — but a huge saving to taxpayers.

The fact is, charters saved taxpayers $997.8 million in 2017-18, and the tax credit scholarship saved $476.6 million, for a total of $1.47 billion.

That is money the public schools — or more precisely the taxpayers — would have to raise if the voucher students returned to public schools. Adding students to a school increases costs. Subtracting students reduce costs, contrary to what voucher opponents would have you believe.

The idea that school choice is harming public schools is fanciful — and even if true would be far less important than the fact that it is helping children, families and taxpayers.

Lloyd Brown, a former reporter, columnist and editor, is retired but still writing occasionally, for eyeonjacksonville.com, American Thinker and other publications.

 

Florida Public Charter Schools to Celebrate National Charter Schools Week May 12 to May 18, 2019

Florida Consortium of Public Charter Schools (FCPCS) Member Schools Expected to Participate in Celebration

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla., (April 25, 2019) – Many of Florida’s more than 650 public charter schools are expected to participate in this year’s National Charter Schools Week celebration, slated for May 12 to May 18, 2019.  National Charter Schools Week is an official program of the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, based in Washington, D.C.

The theme for this year’s celebration is “Charter Schools Are,” according to information posted on the website of the National Alliance, which notes, “This special celebration is a time for everyone in the (charter schools) movement – leaders, teachers, students, parents and advocates – to come together to showcase our schools and students.”

For 2019, each weekday during National Charter Schools Week is focused on a different core group of charter school participants, according to the National Alliance.  Monday is focused on charter school leaders, Tuesday is about charter school teachers, elected officials are recognized on Wednesday, the primary focus Thursday is on charter school supporters and advocates, while Friday embraces students and alumni of charter schools.

Many of Florida’s public charter schools have been active participants in National Charter Schools Week during past years, according to the Florida Consortium of Public Charter Schools.

“The Florida Consortium of Public Charter Schools encourages our member schools to once again take part in this year’s celebration, in order to showcase their educational accomplishments and increase awareness and understanding of Florida’s public charter schools,” said Robert Haag, President of the Florida Consortium of Public Charter Schools.  “This is a great opportunity to increase visibility and recognition of public charter schools in our state.

For more information about National Charter Schools Week, visit the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools website at https://www.publiccharters.org/what-you-can-do/celebrate-national-charter-schools-week.

About the Florida Consortium of Public Charter Schools

The Florida Consortium of Public Charter Schools (FCPCS) is the leading charter school membership association in the state, with a membership of nearly 75 percent of all operating charter schools.  Since its inception in 1999, FCPCS has been dedicated to creating a national model of high quality, accredited public charter schools that are student-centered and performance-driven.  FCPCS provides a wide array of technical support, mentoring, training, networking, and purchasing services to its membership, as well as serving as an advocate for all Florida public charter schools.

 
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