Greenville Technical Charter High School

About Us » Our Charter

Our Charter

 

 

 

 

 

 

Greenville Technical Charter High School

Proposal

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Submitted By

 

 

Greenville Technical Charter High School

 

Charter Committee

 

 

 

 

July 27, 1998


TABLE OF CONTENTS

 

 

 

Greenville Technical Charter High School Charter Committee

ii

 

 

Proposal

1 – 30

 

 

Appendix A – Bylaws

A1 – A7

 

 

Appendix B –  Charter Committee Biographies

B1

 

 

Appendix C – Accountability Plan

C1 – C10

 

 

Appendix D – Budget

D1 – D-3

 

 

Appendix E – Sample Staff Handbook

E1 – E4

 

 

Appendix F – Sample Personnel Handbook

F1 – F2

 

 

Appendix G – Professional Standards

G1 – G8

 

 

Appendix H – Sample Student Policy

H1 – H5

 

 

Appendix I – Insurance

I1

 

 

Letters of Support

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

i

 


 

Greenville Technical charter high school

 

Where The Future Begins Today !

The Greenville Charter School Committee is a not-for-profit organization organized in South Carolina.  The Corporation has been formed for the purpose of developing a charter high school in Greenville County.  A short biography for each Board member is included in Appendix B.  The Corporation is seeking 501 c (3) status.  The Corporation’s EIN is 57-1066272.  A copy of the Corporation’s Bylaws is attached as Appendix A.

Greenville Technical Charter High School (GTCHS) will open its doors in August  1999, with two hundred (200) students, one hundred (100) freshmen and one hundred (100) sophomores.  One hundred (100) new freshmen will enroll every August thereafter until the school reaches its projected capacity of four hundred (400) students by June, 2002, the end of the first three-year charter period.

 

 

1.  Vision

GTCHS will embrace the credo of its host, Greenville Technical College, a college that works, to become “a school that works” for all students.

 

2.  Mission

The school will provide equitable opportunities for all students to acquire an education focused on linkages among rigorous academics, technology and careers to produce graduates who are prepared  for success  in the global workforce of the 21st Century.

 

To Achieve The MissioN

 

A project-based curriculum, modeled after prevailing practices in the workplace, will provide each student with a strong academic foundation as well as the technical training necessary for employment and advancement in the contemporary economy.  Individualized active learning, critical thinking, and problem solving will be augmented with training in a state-of-the-art technological environment.  Finally, each student will develop close associations with adults  who will play the role of career mentors and learning coaches.                                                


                 FOR STUDENTS

Each GTCHS student will receive an education for:

  • Intellect: Each student will meet high academic standards.
  • Citizenship: Each student will be given the opportunity to be a leader in the school and in the community. Each student will be prepared to exercise the rights and responsibilities of American citizenship.
  • Employment: Each student will participate in an education program that links technology, careers and a rigorous academic program.
  • Responsibility: Each student will be held accountable to a code of moral and ethical conduct.

 

FOR Teachers

Each GTCHS teacher will deliver educational services characterized by:

  • Innovation: Each teacher will study and adapt innovative teaching practices.
  • Productivity: Each teacher will provide instruction within education management systems that enhance productivity.
  • Accountability: Each teacher will increase individual professionalism through ongoing self-assessment and accountability.
  • Involvement: Each teacher will be an active participant in the management of the school.
  • Modeling: Each teacher is expected to model the habits of the heart and mind that students are expected to develop.


3.  Goals

Each graduate of Greenville Technical Charter High School will:

 

  1. Read, write and communicate effectively.
  2. Use mathematics, the arts, computers and other technologies effectively.
  3. Define, analyze and solve complex problems.
  4. Acquire, integrate, and apply essential knowledge from the core academic disciplines: Language Arts, History, Geography, Economics, Government, Mathematics, Science, and a World Language.
  5. Study and work effectively.
  6. Demonstrate personal, social and civic responsibility.
  7. Be placed, within ninety (90) days after graduation, in a related post-secondary program, or related workplace employment.

 

4.  GOALS, Objectives and LEARNING STANDARDS

 

School academic objectives will be aligned with the South Carolina Academic Achievement Standards and the standards of the School District of Greenville County. The following are sample learning standards. 

 

Each student will:

 

  1. Read, write and communicate effectively.
    • 1. Read and listen critically for information, understanding and enjoyment.
    • 2. Write and speak clearly, factually, persuasively, and creatively in Standard English.


      1.3.      Distinguish fact from opinion.

      1.4.      Read, write and converse in at least one language in addition to English.

  1. Use mathematics, the arts, computers and other technologies effectively.

      2.1.      Apply mathematical skills to interpret information and to solve problems.

      2.2.      Use the arts to explore and express ideas, feelings and beliefs.

      2.3.      Use computers and other technology to acquire, organize and communicate information to solve problems.

  1. Define, analyze and solve complex problems from a global perspective.

      3.1.      Make careful observations and ask pertinent questions.

      3.2.      Research, select and organize information from multiple sources.

      3.3.      Make reasoned inferences and construct logical arguments.

      3.4.      Develop and present conclusions through speaking, writing, and graphics.

  1. Acquire, integrate, and apply essential knowledge from the core academic disciplines.

      4.1       Read a wide variety of literature including fiction, non-fiction, poetry, drama and non-fiction from different eras and cultures.

 

      4.2       Analyze literary works and communicate findings in writing, orally and through other methods of presentations.

 

      4.3       Know and understand mathematical concepts such as measurement, estimation, quantity, probability and statistics.

 

      4.4       Recognize and use patterns, construct mathematical models, represent and reason about quantities and shapes, draw accurate conclusions from data, and solve, justify and communicate solutions.

 

      4.5       Apply the fundamental principles of the life sciences, physical sciences, earth/space sciences, and the science of technology to analyze problems and relate them to human concerns and life experiences.

 

      4.6       Investigate and demonstrate methods of scientific inquiry and experimentation.

 

      4.7       Know and make connections among important historical events, themes, and issues.

 

      4.8       Synthesize and communicate information about important events and fundamental concepts in South Carolina, United States and world history, including documents such as the Declaration of Independence, U.S. Constitution, Bill of Rights, Federalist Papers and the Gettysburg Address.

 

      4.9       Know important information regarding the physical environment and understand such concepts as location and place, critical features of a region, demographic trends and patterns, and the relationship between people and the environment.

 

      4.10.    Know and understand the nature of the creative process, the characteristics of visual art, music, dance and theater and their importance in shaping and reflecting historical and cultural heritage.

 

      4.11.    Know basic concepts of human development, mental health, parenting, and disease prevention.

 

      4.12.    Develop and participate in physical activities for personal growth, fitness, and enjoyment.

  1. Study and work effectively.

      5.1       Set goals and achieve them by organizing time, workspace and resources effectively.

 

      5.2  Monitors progress and learn from both mistakes and successes.

 

      5.3       Manage money, balance competing priorities and interests and allocate time among study, work and recreation.

 

      5.4  Work independently and in groups.

 

      5.5  Work hard, persevere and act with integrity.

 

      5.6.      Participate in school to work activities.

 

  1. Demonstrate personal, social and civic responsibility.

 

6.1       Accept responsibility for one’s own behavior and actions.

 

      6.2       Know career options and the academic and technical requirements needed for employment and economic independence.

 

      6.3  Learn to resolve disagreements, reduce conflict and prevent violence.

 

      6.4  Participate in school and community activities.

 

      6.5       Understand individual rights, responsibilities and roles in the community, state and nation.

 

      6.6.      Understand the principles of democracy, equality, freedom, law and justice.

 

 

5.  Pupil Achievement Standards

 

GTCHS will develop new and higher standards for all students to achieve.

 

The following sample standards illustrate goals for academic achievement in each of the core academic disciplines:

By the end of Grade 10 each student will be able to:

 

LANGUAGE ARTS

  • Deliver oral presentations using appropriate gestures, tone vocabulary, and organization.
  • Analyze, evaluate, and apply knowledge of how authors use elements of fiction as a point of view, characterization, and irony for specific rhetorical and aesthetic purposes.
  • Write coherent compositions with a clear focus, adequate detail, and well-developed paragraphs.
  • Use different levels of formality, styles, and tone when composing for different audiences.


SOCIAL STUDIES: HISTORY, GEOGRAPHY, ECONOMICS, GOVERNMENT

  • Analyze and explain the interrelationship of selected historical events.
  • Analyze the impact of the early Industrial Revolution on society.
  • Investigate how individual and cultural factors affect people’s lives and career choices.
  • Analyze factors that influence changes in cultures over time.
  • Demonstrate how arts and artifacts of a culture are affected by new technologies.

 

Mathematics

  • Use a variety of strategies in problem-solving approaches.
  • Understand basic and advanced procedures while performing the processes of computation.
  • Apply basic and advanced concepts of measurement.
  • Describe the general nature and broad usage of mathematics.

 

Science

  • Formulate testable questions and generate explanations using the results of predictions.
  • Summarize chemical reactions by symbolic or word equations that specify the reactants and products involved.
  • Demonstrate an understanding that constant motion in a circle requires a force to maintain it, because velocity is constantly changing.
  • Describe the structure and function of DNA.
  • Describe uses of material conversion processes, i.e., separating, forming, conditioning and combining, in production processes.
  • Propose designs and chose between alternative solutions.


 

World Language

 

  • Use the target language to engage in conversations, exchange information, and express feelings and opinions.
  • Comprehend and interpret written and spoken language on diverse topics and in diverse media. Present information and ideas to an audience of listeners or readers on a variety of topics.
  • Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of traditions, institutions, and expressions of the target culture.
  • Describe basic concepts relating to nutrition, exercise, and safety.
  • Present information on strategies for avoiding high risk behaviors.
  • Present basic information adverse effects of controlled substances, alcohol and tobacco.

 

HEALTH

 

6.  Admission Policy and Standards

 

Each student will complete a basic application form. The form will include the student’s name, address, school currently attending, last grade completed, current grade, and telephone number.  The parent or sponsor will be required to sign the admission form.

 

Applications will be available in all Greenville County middle schools, the County Library branches and other points of distribution currently used by Greenville Tech.

 

Applications may be obtained in different languages upon request.  Applications will be accepted at  the Charter Technical Charter High School prior to  May 1, 1999.  Up to 200 students will be enrolled in August 1999.  Should the number of applicants exceed the number of seats a lottery will be used. 

 

All names will be drawn on the date established in an open meeting of the Charter School Committee or by the Committee’s designee.  When all seats are filled then all other applicants will be placed on the waiting list in the order in which their names were drawn.

 

7.  EVIDENCE of Support

 

The proposal to establish a charter high school on the campus of Greenville Tech has received wide spread support in the community.  Over thirty (30) local businesses have written letters of support for the establishment of the school.  Over fifty (50)  residents have expressed an interest in enrolling a child in the school.  The Committee intends to conduct a number of local forums on the proposed school program in the Fall.  Additional evidence of support may be provided to the School District of Greenville County Board of Trustees at that time.

 

In addition the proposal is supported by the South Carolina Chamber of Commerce and local residents and officials.

 

8.  Program Description

 

Model

 

The Greenville Technical Charter High School will adapt the four  (4)  basic principles of the national High Schools That Work initiative to the economic and educational context of Greenville County, South Carolina.

 

Goals

 

      1)   To elevate the mathematics, science, communications, problem solving and technical competencies of career - bound students to meet national standards.

 

  • To blend the traditional college preparatory studies of mathematics, science, and language arts with career and technical studies.

 

  • To articulate campus instruction in both an academic core and a technical proficiency with on-the-job experience in Greenville County

 

      4)   To develop with Greenville Tech and local businesses a mentoring program to support the school’s mission.

 

PRINCIPLES OF THE CURRICULUM

 

The curriculum will be developed to reflect the following principles:

 

  1. Rigorous academic core studies paralleling a career concentration with measured benchmarks of progress.

 

  1. Technical structures that allow each student to master competencies prescribed by industrial and national boards.

 

  1. Integration between academic and technical subject areas in project based learning activities.

 

  1. Career development competencies that are age appropriate, and connected to working and learning with adults in the workplace and life long learning.

 

  1. Providing the extra time, assistance and support that students need to accommodate their multiple learning styles and other needs.

 

  1. Engaging students as active learners.


REPLICATION

 

One of the school’s goals is to develop curriculum units for dissemination to schools in South Carolina.  GTCHS will undertake, as part of its mission, development of model units that will be validated  by a third party during the first four (4) years of the school’s charter.  GTCHS will then offer these units to other Greenville County  High Schools.  Interested schools will be offered the opportunity to participate in the process beginning in the summer of 2000.  Opportunities for peer collaboration will be explored with interested teachers.

 

 

 

 

COURSE OF STUDY:  GRADES 9-12

 

Each student’s program of study will have a strong academic core including mathematics, science, and language arts and social studies (history, geography, economics and government).  South Carolina and Greenville County   curriculum  standards will be used as a basis to develop the high school’s curriculum frameworks with learning standards for each area.

 

All science, mathematics, language arts, and history courses listed will be offered to all students.  Specific Greenville Technical College academic programs identified as part of an individual student’s program of study may be taken in grades 11-12 as an alternative to academic courses at GTCHS through the dual credit program.  The student’s program of studies may include additional courses not offered at GTCHS.


 

The core academic program for all students is outlined in the table below.

Academic Core

SUBJECT

9th

10th

South

Carolina

Exit Exams

11th

12th

Language Arts

English

Literature

 

Diagnostic Reading, Vocabulary, and Spelling, Grammar

English

 

Literature

 

Continuation of Fundamental Language Skills

Summer

 

English

Literature

 

 

Reading and Writing

 

English

 

Literature

 

  1. Communications
  2. Service Learning
  3. Professional Capstone

History

World Geography

 

 

 

Global Resources: Natural and Human

World History to 1700:

 

 

 

 

Invention and Technology to the Industrial Revolution

 

U.S. and the World from 1700 to the Present:

From the Industrial Revolution to the Post-Industrial Era

Advanced Studies

  1. Free Enterprise Economics and

Democratic Citizenship

  1. Service Learning
  2. Professional Capstone


 


SUBJECT

9th

10th

South

Carolina

Exit Exams

11th

12th

Science

Introduction to Science and Technology

  1. Health/Safety
  2. Environmental
  3. IPS

Biology

 

Chemistry

Advanced Biology/ Chemistry

Physics

Anatomy and Physiology

Mathematics

Math Lab, or

Algebra I, or

Algebra II

Algebra I, or

Algebra II, or

Geometry

Algebra II, or Geometry

Geometry and

Discrete Mathematics

and Trigonometry

Calculus

World Language

 

 

Spanish 1, or other languages at GT.

Spanish 2, or other languages at GT.

 

Spanish 3, or

other languages at GT.

Spanish 4, or other languages at GT.

Physical

Education

Health

 

Physical

Education

Health

 

Physical

Education

Health

 

 

Physical

Education

Health

 

Physical

Education

Health

 

 

Grade 9: Career Pathway Exploration

Each entering student will participate in a yearlong exploratory program.  Each student will study the entire academic core all year long and rotate through a one-trimester exploration of each of the three Career Pathways.

 

Career Pathways

  1. Business
  2. Technology
  3. Health and Public Service
   

Business

Entrepreneurship

Finance and Marketing

Engineering

Computer Technology

Manufacturing

Health Occupation

Child Development

Protective Services

 

A strong personal and career guidance component will connect the academic core to the Career Pathways in the first year.  With the help of an individual mentor, each student will assess academic progress and investigate future instructional options.

 

During the first year, each student will construct an Academic Road Map (ARM) that includes one of the three Career Pathways the following year.  (Pathway admission will be competitive based on student performance during the first year.)  The ARM will be approved by the parent (or sponsor), the student’s mentor and the student.  This plan may be amended as needed.

 

Grade 10: Career Pathway Selection

Sophomores continue their study within the academic core disciplines and complete South Carolina Competency Examinations in the required subject areas at the end of the year.

 

In the second year each student must select one career pathway.  This pathway selection allows the student to test a pathway with two options:

 

  1. to rotate each semester through the three (3) Concentrations in a particular Career Pathway

 

  1. to begin a major in one of those three Concentrations.

 

Each student, in consultation with a mentor,  may also move from trial rotation to concentration during this year.  Some degree of flexibility will exist for a student between pathways to the extent that space allows and the student meets program preparation standards.

 

 

Grade 11: Career Pathway Concentration

Studies in the academic core become more specialized and workplace-referenced in the junior year.  The humanities increasingly incorporate functional business literacy while the history curriculum investigates the role of technology and business in the American experience.  Mathematics and Science similarly stress problem-solving and technological applications.

 

Each student will select a Career Pathway Concentration by the beginning of grade eleven.  The Concentration curriculum will present a series of competency clusters developed by boards within the relevant industries and occupations as well as remain in articulation with post-secondary  education requirements.

 


Each student’s mentor brings focus to the student’s academic progress and the professional destinations described in the initial Academic Road Map during the junior year.  Inquires and applications for increased on-the-job activity consistent with that map are initiated at this time.

 

 

GRADE 12:  CAREER PATHWAY CAPSTONE

 

Each student will complete a program of study in all of the core academic disciplines, including performances leading to the SAT II and Advanced Placement examinations of the College Board when appropriate.

 

The Career Pathway Capstone, in close consultation with the mentor, may include dual enrollment opportunities, internships or cooperative work placements in the community.    Each senior will complete two (2) integrated, comprehensive projects demonstrating a mature, purposeful preparation for life in the community and the workforce. 

 

1.) A Service Learning Project will be designed within the humanities curriculum and involve each senior in the work of a non-profit or governmental agency in the community for at least fifty (50)  hours.  Each student will experience the voluntary spirit so central to American society prior to becoming a high school graduate and a full-fledged community member.

 

2.) Each senior will also complete a workplace-based project, or Professional Capstone, integrating acquired academic competencies with job skills.  Project foci may include an industrial problem, a planned expansion, an employee recommendation for a business improvement, or some other detailed economic study of the student’s choice.

 

Each student will choose a mode of presentation—oral, graphic, technological, in writing, or some combination—to present his or her successful Professional Capstone investigation to the entire school community, parents, and interested members of the community.  Similarly, the associated frustrations and triumphs of the Service Learning Project will also be communicated to classmates, friends, family, and sponsors.

 


An essential ingredient of the program offered at GTCHS is a guarantee that each student who receives a diploma will be placed, within ninety (90) days after graduation, in a related post-secondary program, or related workplace employment.

 

Principles of Instructional MethodologY

 

  1. Project-based learning: All core academics will use project based learning methodologies that integrate academic components and technical components.  Project based learning gives each student, individually or in teams, the opportunity to apply content areas based upon real life experiences.   These clear, purposeful activities allow each student to demonstrate not only prior knowledge, but also how this information has been processed in seeking a solution to the problem.  Project based learning develops student’s communication skills by requiring the presentation of a solution as a demonstration of mastery of specific learning activities. Project based learning allows teachers to provide a multi sensory program that best meets the needs of students with different learning styles.

 

  1. Time on Task to Learn: Recent studies support long established beliefs that longer periods of time spent in active laboratory, hands on learning result in much stronger retention and subsequent application of skill.  Each student will spend at least one-third and up to one-half of daily learning time in technical laboratory or workplace learning environments.  These blocks of time provide for uninterrupted learning experiences that allow the student to identify needs and resources, formulate solutions, initiate and complete tasks, and document and communicate outcomes. 

 

  1. Individualized Program: Each student will develop an Academic Road Map with the assistance of a counselor, mentor (s) and his/her parents or sponsor.  The Academic Road Map will state the student’s proposed four (4) year program at GTCHS. This will include a course of study and career goals.  Each student will also have an annual Individual Learning Plan (ILP).  Included in the plan will be academic goals, data from the most recent assessments, and a summary of the student’s career goals.   ILPs and associated learning activities become mile posts  on an Academic Road Map for each student.

 

  1. Technical Curriculum: Each technical concentration is organized in a competency based format.  Staff, related industry practitioners, and related post-secondary professionals identify what students need to know and be able to do in the work place within the respective career area.  These tasks are grouped into activities currently found in the work place for which people are compensated to perform.  Once these activities are validated by local industry and/or third party accrediting reviewers, then standards are set.  Standards are based on how well the activity must be performed to secure professional compensation.   The setting of standards and the measures to determine competency will be continuously examined and validated by local, national, or third party reviewers.  Examples of such standards may be found with ASE (Automotive Service Excellence), AGAPI (American Graphic Arts and Printing Industry), and NLN (National League of Nurses) standards.  Most national industrial standards also include third party accrediting review team visits and/or associated national testing.

 

  1. Technology: Advances in technology have significantly enhanced teachers’ ability to customize instruction to meet the individual needs of students; teach in a multi sensory manner; and continually assess student performance.  GTCHS staff will make extensive use of technology in the preparation and delivery of instruction.

 

 

 

 

Student Activities

 

Student activities  are an important part of many technical program enrichment and  standards recognition for students.  Activities will include, but are not limited to: Student Council, National Honor Society, the Technical Industrial Clubs of America (VICA), Future Business Leaders (FBL), Distributive Education Clubs of America (DECA), America First Contests, and Odyssey of the Mind.

 

A survey of enrolled students will be conducted as part of the registration process to determine interest in intramural and/or interscholastic programs.  

 

 

Developmental Guidance and Career Development Program

 

The most critical component of the guidance program is the ongoing, active participation of parents and their subscription to the following core principles:

 

  • The program is focused on post-secondary success.
  • The school has career focus not a general education focus.
  • Students are expected to be active learners engaged in activities that are real life applications of valued knowledge and skills.

 

The most powerful influence in every student’s life is the family or family surrogate in its many modern forms.  The parent and the school in this charter become the learning team, pledging to help each student follow a plan of learning success.  The program investment by the parent and student goes beyond the school day and school year.  The program makes time a variable and learning a constant. 

 

Parents will sign an agreement outlining this commitment and these expectations after the eighth grade orientation and before ninth grade enrollment.  As active partners, parents regularly participate in benchmark reviews and celebrations of accomplishment during each student’s four (4) years at the high school.

 

  1. Organized Career Development Plan: A planned program of experiences and activities consistent with the National Career Development Guidelines will be carried out as an embedded component of the curriculum.

 

  1. Mentoring: Each student is assigned to a mentor upon arrival at the school and remains with this mentor for his or her entire four-year program of study.  In this way, mentors develop close personal relationships with their advisees, their parents, and their teachers.  Student achievement and progress can be carefully monitored, as well as personal growth and development.  In the event of a personal or family crisis, mentors are singularly well equipped to intervene on behalf of the student at school as well as in the community.

 

 


 

9th

Exploration

10th

Discovery

11th

    Direction

12th

Pathfinder

The first-year counseling program helps each student develop a personal profile and take inventory of his or her strengths and areas for improvement.

In the second year, students learn how to manage their personal affairs and explore a range of personal and professional lifestyles. They also learn how to set personal and professional goals and solve problems.

Students focus on a particular career pathway and learn individual and interpersonal skills-teamwork and conflict resolution-valued in the workplace

Students prepare for both the workplace and lifelong learning by further career research and practicing active listening and clear communication

 

 

Grade 9: The first-year counseling program helps each student develop a personal profile and take inventory of strengths and areas for improvement.

 

Grade 10: Each student in the second year learns how to manage personal affairs and explores a range of personal and professional lifestyles and goals.

 

Grade 11:  Each student focuses on a particular career pathway and learns individual and interpersonal skills—including teamwork and conflict resolution—valued in the workplace.

 

Grade 12:  Each student completes preparation for the workplace and the community through further career research and the practice of a range of communication skills, including active listening.


 

9.  Evaluation Plan

 

Students at the school will participate in all assessments as required by the South Carolina Education Accountability Act of 1998.  Consistent with the intent of this legislation, the school will develop a comprehensive Accountability Plan.

 

The four guiding principles of the GTCHS evaluation plan are:

 

  1. Each student can reach high academic and technical program standards, but all learn differently and at varied paces. The academic and technical standards, which drive the school’s curriculum, must be applied individually. 

 

Measurement technique:  Each student will have an ILP and will meet with a Counselor   to discuss and update this contract once per semester .  The Counselor, with the student, will keep track of specific standards met and curriculum unit (s) completed.  The Counselor may confer with the Career Mentor/Learning Coach as needed.

 

Teachers will develop rubrics to measure progress toward each standard incorporated into a unit, and a student will revise unsuccessful work.   Each student will be required to complete extra work as necessary to keep on pace to complete all work by the end of the following summer.  The school will create a standard electronic document to track levels of success at various standards; different teachers can update this list, which will always be available to the mentor and other school administrators.

 

Demonstration:  Each student will successfully complete all required projects for advancement to the next level of study.

 

  1. All students must accumulate knowledge and be able to use it. They will master fundamental skills and apply them to real-life work.

 

Measurement technique:  Teachers will use a variety of assessments to measure progress on mastery of discrete skills or content knowledge--tests, timed and un-timed--writing, lab demonstrations, discussions, small projects.  Some of this work will be edited and revised; some will be scored holistically.  Every student in the school will complete a timed response essay once a month.  These writing assignments will be collected in a master portfolio and tracked over four years to help create specific writing goals for each student’s ILP.

 

 

Teachers will create rubrics for the large projects that make up the project classes.  These rubrics will assess student success on the standards around which the project was designed.  They will demarcate between successful and unsuccessful work, and describe specific characteristics of highly successful work.  These assessment tools will provide a picture of which standards each student has met, where a student has excelled, and where improvement is needed.  By including specific characteristics of successful work, rubrics will help improve skills, as well as provide a picture in time of student progress.  Learning Coaches and Career Mentors  will also have opportunities to assess student work.

 

Demonstration:  All students will be successful at all parts of all projects.  Adherence to our first principle will ensure that no student has unattainable standards as immediate goals.

 

Also, every student will present an academic portfolio at a community open house.  The selected work must demonstrate success at a standard selected as part of the ILP process.  The student will discuss the work in the context of a unit or project.  The school will invite parents, Learning Coaches, other members of the Greenville community, faculty from other Greenville schools and other charter schools, and state charter board members to attend and formally assess work with a standard rubric.  There will be one such open house the first year and three every year thereafter. 

 

 

  1. All students will become proficient at work requiring higher order thinking and problem solving.

 

Measurement technique: Students will practice higher order thinking skills and problem solving in each project.  This work will be measured with rubrics, and classroom teachers and each student’s mentor teacher will monitor success.  Joseph Renzulli and Sally Reis have developed the Student Product Assessment Form (SPAF), which measures levels of success on a five-point scale in areas such as focus of work, use of resources, consideration of audience, and overall quality.  An assessment form modeled on the SPAF will be developed and distributed to each student to use for constant self-evaluation. 

 

Demonstration:  Each student will score at least three out of a possible five on each area of work assessed using the form.  This score designates that the student has demonstrated considerable, but not “to a great extent,”  evidence of meeting the specific standard. It will demonstrate an understanding of the requirements for success and progress towards mastery.  Teachers will meet regularly and discuss work samples to determine a school-wide definition of different numerical scores. 

 

  1. All students need ties to their community to develop into successful members of that community.

 

Measurement technique:  Each student will have a Learning Coach, who will provide support in the academic environment of the school and a Career Mentor who will provide support in the workplace.  Each student will complete surveys twice per year (beginning and end) to assess the career placement on a four-point scale.  This data will be used by the school counselor, teachers, Learning Coaches and Career Mentors to review and revise programs at the school.

 

In addition, the school will develop the surveys, which will ask about levels of commitment, changes in behavior or academic success, interest in each other’s work, and overall success in linking Greenville Technical Charter High School to the community.  Survey data will be used to improve structures surrounding the program and, if necessary, change placements.

 

Demonstration:  Each student will be assigned a community-based Career Mentor beginning with the Career Concentration in the junior year.  On a four-point scale, Learning Coaches and students must rate the program at 2.5 or higher; scores must improve each year until they reach 3.5, at which point they may remain the same.  An outside evaluator will be hired to collect data to measure the Learning Coach program’s impact on student academic performance.

 

 

10.  Accountability Plan

 

The school will hire an independent evaluator to:

 

  • Meet with faculty, parents, and the board,
  • Write a school accountability plan based upon the principles articulated herein,
  • Examine Greenville Technical Charter High School’s assessment tools to determine if they accurately measure progress towards standards and other goals which are part of the accountability plan, and assist in making necessary changes,
  • Use SocratesÔ or other similar record keeping software to collect data and maintain a database from Greenville Technical Charter High School student assessments,
  • Produce a variety of reports showing school progress towards student mastery of standards and other identified goals, as outlined in the accountability plan.


Additionally, the school will know it is meeting its goals if parents and students continue to choose Greenville Technical Charter High School as an educational option.  Parents and students will have on-going opportunities to provide formal and informal feedback to the faculty and board. [See Appendix C for sample Accountability Plan Implementation by a third party.]

 

11.  Budget and Audit

The proposed budget is attached as Appendix D.

 

An independent audit of the School’s finances shall be conducted annually by an independent auditor retained by the Charter Committee. The audit will meet requirements set forth in statute and agreed to with the Board of Trustees of the School District of Greenville County.

 

 

12.  Governance Structure

The Greenville Charter Committee will govern the school.  The school’s planning committee will hold the first annual election in September 1999.  The newly elected Charter Committee will include at least one teacher.  All employees of the school and all parents are eligible to vote.  Parents shall receive one ballot for each child enrolled in the school.

 

The Charter Committee’s responsibilities shall include:

  • Hiring employees.
  • Contracting for services.
  • Developing school policies, with the input of the professional staff.
  • Adopting a budget.
  • Approving the school’s educational program.
  • Approving the school’s accountability plan.

 

The Charter Committee will delegate to the Principal the day to day operations of the School.  The Principal will insure staff participation in the governance of the school.  The Principal may appoint Committees with student, staff and parent representation to provide input on the development of the school’s program.  

 

The Charter Committee may contract with others to provide services such as financial management, staff and curriculum development and program evaluation.

 

 

Racial Balance

The racial composition of the school will not differ from that of the district by more than 10%. 

 

The current racial composition of the district is:

 

72% Caucasian.

28% Minority.

 

 

 

 

                                          TRANSPORTATION

 

 

The Charter Committee will discuss contracting for transportation with the School District of Greenville County Board of Trustees. 

 

The Charter Committee will provide transportation in accordance with the District’s approved transportation policy and the requirements of the Individuals with Disabilities  Act.

Transportation for field trips and extracurricular activities will also be provided.

 

The Charter Committee will also consider contracting for these same services with other vendors.

 


Facilities and Equipment

The Greenville Area Commission has agreed to provide the Charter High School with a rent free facility for the term of the charter.  The facility (Health Annex Building) is located on the main campus of Greenville Tech.  The building includes 18,252 sq. ft. of space. The building meets ADA codes and will  provide ten (10) basic classrooms, offices, and seminar and project rooms.  The Area Commission has also agreed to provide students with access to  college’s  learning resource center, computer and science labs.  In addition the students will use facilities at the college and in the community to support the physical education and extra curricular program.

 

The Charter Committee has accepted this offer.  In evaluating the space offered the Committee considered the following factors:

 

  • Access to facility.
  • Ancillary facilities and services.

 

The Charter Committee believes that the proposed site offers a safe environment for students and staff.  The daily schedule of the school will be structured so that students are supervised throughout the day.  The Charter Committee also noted that the College maintains its own security force on site.

 

Personnel Policies

 

Several proposed personnel policies are attached as Appendix E.  The policies will be reviewed with the school principal and the Charter Committee’s Personnel Subcommittee in June and then finalized.  The Personnel Subcommittee will approve a Staff Handbook no later than January 1999.

 

The Charter Committee will not follow the provisions of Article 5, Chapter 25 of Title 59 (Employment and Dismissal of Teachers).

 

A sample teacher’s contract is also attached as Appendix F.  All staff will be considered employees at will.  All staff will be employed under eleven (11) month contracts. 


Teachers will be required to participate in a summer professional development institute each year.  This program will be developed with local businesses.

 

The Charter Committee believes that accountability applies not only to students, but also to the staff who serve as role models for students.  Appendix G details the standards that will be used to evaluate teachers and the principal.  Non-certified teachers will be required to meet the same performance standards as certified teachers. 

 

 

The grievance and hearing procedure for the staff at the school are as follows:

 

  1. Employees are encouraged to discuss any concerns with their immediate supervisor.
  2. Should an issue, which may include a performance evaluation of the employee and a decision to terminate the employee’s services, not be resolved through discussion then

the employee may reduce his/her concerns in writing and submit these to his/her supervisor.

 

  1. The supervisor will meet with the employee within a reasonable period of time to attempt to resolve the issue. A summary of the discussion and the proposed resolution shall be given to the employee by the supervisor.

 

  1. If the employee is not satisfied with the proposed resolution then he/she may request a meeting with the Charter Committee’s Personnel Subcommittee.

 

  1. The Personnel Subcommittee shall meet with the employee within a reasonable period of time to attempt to resolve the issue. The Subcommittee shall give a summary of the discussion and the proposed resolution to the employee.

 

  1. If the employee is not satisfied with the proposed resolution then he/she may request a meeting with the Charter Committee.

 

  1. The Charter Committee shall meet with the employee within a reasonable period of time to attempt to resolve the issue. The Charter Committee shall give a summary of the discussion and the proposed resolution to the employee.

 


 

Student Policies  

 

A committee chaired by the Principal will develop a Student and Parent Handbook during the summer of 1999.  The committee will include teachers and parents.  After the initial enrollment period student representatives will be added to the Handbook Committee.  The Charter Committee will approve the Student and Parent Handbook prior to distribution.



The Handbook will include sections on:

 

  • Fundamental expectations such as attendance, dress, civility, academic expectations, respect for self, others and property.
  • The Basic No’s.
  • Offense and Consequences.

 

A sample of a handbook section is included in Appendix  H.

 

All students will be accorded due process.  In instances when out of school suspension of more than ten (10) school days or expulsion is being considered the following procedures will apply:

 

  • The student will be given written notice of the infraction.
  • The student will be provided with the opportunity to present his/her version of the incident. The student may be represented by counsel at the student’s own expense.
  • The student may call witnesses.
  • The student will be given a written statement on the outcome of the administrative hearing.

 


The first level meeting will be held with the school principal.  The first level meeting will be held before the sanction(s) is implemented, unless health or safety concerns dictate otherwise.

 

If the student does not agree with the principal’s decision, he/she may appeal the decision to the Charter Committee.  The appeal must be sent in writing to the Charter Committee Chairperson within three (3) school days after the principal’s decision.  The Charter Committee will schedule a meeting to hear the appeal within five (5) days.  During this time the student may not attend school.

 

The Charter Committee will conduct an administrative hearing on the appeal.  The student may be represented by counsel at the student’s own expense. The student may call witnesses.  The Charter Committee will make a record the proceedings.  The Charter Committee’s decision will be sent to the student in writing within five (5) days after the hearing.

 

The School will comply with all Federal and State requirements that relate to disciplining students whose program is governed by IDEA.

 

The school will inform the Greenville School District’s designated official of all long term (more than ten (10) days) suspensions and expulsions.

 

Liability and Hold Harmless

 

The Greenville Technical Charter High School Charter Committee agrees to indemnify and hold harmless the School District of Greenville County Board of Trustees, officers, directors, agents and employees, successors, and assigns from all claims, damages, losses and expenses, including attorney’s fees, arising out of or resulting from any action of the School caused by any intentional or negligent act or omission of the School, its officers, agents, employees, and contractors.

 

Insurance

 

A sample insurance plan is included as Appendix I.  The Charter Committee will review any additional requirements that the Board of Trustees may have.

 


Assurances

 

The School makes the following assurances:

 

  • The school prohibits discrimination in accordance with State and Federal statutes.
  • The school will enroll students on a first come first serve basis. Should the number of applicants exceed the number of openings then a lottery will be used. In accordance with statute enrollment priority will be given to the children of the staff and to siblings of students attending the school or drawn first from the lottery.
  • Students not chosen by lottery will be placed on a waiting list in the same manner as students were chosen for open slots.
  • The school will not charge tuition.
  • The school will provide transportation for all enrolled students under the proposed transportation plan.
  • Students enrolled will comply with all of the health requirements set forth by state regulations.
  • At least 75% of the teachers employed will be certified to teach in South Carolina.
  • The school will comply with all State, Federal (including the Freedom of Information Act) and local laws.
  • The school will obtain tax-exempt status within two (2) years after the charter is granted.
  • The school will remain nonsectarian in its programs, admission policies, employment practices, and all other operations and is not and will not be affiliated with any nonsectarian school or a religious institution.
  • The school will meet all of the audit requirements of the School District of Greenville County.
  • The school will report annually to the Greenville Technical Charter High School Charter Committee, The School District of Greenville County Board of Trustees as the sponsor, and the South Carolina Department of Education, as required by the South Carolina Charter School Law, 1996. The report will include the number of students enrolled, academic achievement of the students, the number of staff, and the certification status of the teaching staff.  The school will meet or exceed the number of days of operation and required instructional hours of the Greenville County Public Schools.


 

RELEASE FROM LOCAL POLICIES

Except as provided in this application, the Board of Trustees of the School District of Greenville County agrees to release the Greenville Technical Charter High School from all other local policies.