As a champion of school success, we share school achievement, growth and comparative performance information with each partner because we believe student data should be the basis for every decision.
We’re a resource for schools as they plan and evaluate opportunities for short- and long-term improvement, providing guidance, opportunities for professional development and clear, data-driven feedback. Our schools can rely upon us to provide additional resources, information and opportunities for collaboration, innovation and growth.
We monitor every OCCS sponsored school in order to ensure it is observing its charter contract and continually assist them by providing resources to help them succeed. OCCS' Academics and Technical Assistance team has successfully worked with partners to monitor school improvement plans, review state and federal accountability regulations, and to align educational and performance plans. Decisions concerning opening new schools, reauthorizing existing schools, and intervening with or closing poor performers are heavily informed by data collected and monitored throughout each academic year and throughout the course of the charter contract.
We hold our schools to high standards. In exchange, our schools enjoy the freedom to innovate and make decisions that reflect students’ needs—without additional burdens or red tape.
As sponsors, we monitor our schools’ compliance with all applicable laws and with the charter contract. All monitoring is conducted through a dedicated department via document collection, contract analysis, information and resource sharing, site visit evaluation, and governing board meeting attendance. We also offer support to any schools that may not fully understand their charter contracts as well as obligations under state and federal law. We interface with the Ohio Department of Education to assure compliance of each sponsored school.
Our dedicated in-house Compliance Department works together with our schools to ensure that standards are met as well as offer additional support to help them meet their obligations.
Our first step is to assess start-up budgets and provide fiscal training for school board members during the application process. By collaborating with the school treasurer and reviewing the fiscal requirements and deadlines on a regular basis, we ensure that our schools are on track. We participate in the school auditing process and work with auditors to act as a liaison for the school. We review the Ohio Department of Education (ODE) issued payment reports and information to ensure all owed payments are reaching schools. We work directly and frequently with schools to identify and prevent problems to keep each school in good fiscal standing.
As a careful steward of public tax dollars, OCCS provides a comprehensive package of fiscal oversight services for our member schools.
As a statewide sponsor of charter schools, OCCS believes in the value of using on-the-ground resources for our schools in the form of regional representatives. Regional representatives are located in each area of Ohio where we sponsor schools, working directly with our schools on a personal level. Representatives ensure that each school is compliant 10 days before the start of the school year. Throughout the year, they attend board meetings and visit schools regularly, meeting with school leaders to ensure compliance with state and federal regulations. Representatives also coordinate technical support and school complaint investigations. They act as a liaison with the Ohio Department of Education.
Regional representatives are one of the many ways that charter schools are able to perform at such high standards affording our students the best environments for learning.
Each year we make sure our schools are in compliance with all state and federal laws related to students with disabilities. A dedicated OCCS Special Education Department (SPED) conducts a data review of each school's SPED program and discusses the findings and provides recommendations to the school administration and staff to ensure better educational outcomes for students with disabilities.
Comprehensive Special Education Services include a minimum of two SPED visits, during which OCCS reviews student files to ensure best practices.
Public charter schools generally operate with just two-thirds of the per-pupil funding provided for traditional public school students, and those funds must be allocated to cover the significant costs of education, facilities and transportation. With very limited exceptions, Ohio charter schools receive no portion of local share or levy funding.