Ohio Council of Community Schools Succeeds The University of Toledo

Statement from the Executive Director


Since its inception, the Ohio Council of Community Schools (OCCS), in partnership with The University of Toledo (UT), has worked diligently to improve public education options in Ohio. This partnership, developed nearly fifteen years ago, has been instrumental in impacting this change and is the foundation for the next iteration of OCCS.

As our partners already know through our many discussions, after consultation with UT and the Ohio Department of Education, OCCS informed UT that we will be succeeding UT as the sponsor of the 47 schools under contract by the end of September 2017.

Going forward, I want to reiterate to our partner schools, governing authorities, the families of the 25,000 students attending our schools, and other stakeholders that the OCCS commitment to quality technical assistance and oversight is not changing. OCCS will continue to provide grant opportunities to the governing authorities that have identified research-based initiatives which will help the school sustain high performance, improve low performance, or to implement an educational innovation. Additionally, OCCS remains committed to cultivating a culture of lifelong learning and will continue offering scholarship opportunities to students that attended our schools.

OCCS is proud of what has been accomplished as the designee of UT. Some of the highlights include:

  • In FY2016, when calculating a weighted average of Performance Index Scores, our partner schools outperformed the large statewide sponsors, state charter average, and urban 8 districts.
  • When calculating a weighted average of Performance Index Scores over the past 5 years (FY2012-FY2016), our partner schools have consistently been rated toward the top or outperformed the large statewide sponsors, state charter average, and urban 8 districts. 
  • Over the past four school years, at least 75% of our partner schools have earned an equal or better Performance Index Grade than the local district. Many of the schools that were outperformed by their local district have been shut down. 
  • In FY2016, nearly 70% of students in our partner schools were enrolled in a school that outperformed the Urban 8 district average in its Performance Index Score for the year. 
  • Currently, one of our partner schools is the top performing public school in Ohio. Additionally, we partner with the top two statewide virtual schools and one of the highest performing drop-out recovery and prevention schools in Ohio. 
  • Over the past four years, many of our partner schools have been awarded the Ohio Department of Education’s Momentum Award and All A’s Award, and/or named Blue Ribbon Schools, Schools of Promise, High-Performing Schools of Promise, and High-Progress Schools of Promise.

Finally, OCCS wants to thank The University of Toledo for being a great partner in education innovation and for providing OCCS with an opportunity to build on the current successes.

As the only charter school sponsor in Ohio who is solely focused on charter school sponsorship, OCCS is looking forward to strengthening the relationships with our partners and continuing to improve public education options for Ohio’s families.


For more information, please contact:


Lenny Schafer

Executive Director