Facts About Special Education at The Charter School of Wilmington (CSW)

Here are some well known facts about The Charter School of Wilmington, some taken from their very own website!

The founding companies behind CSW are DuPont, Ashland (Hercules), AstraZeneca, Christiana Care, Delmarva Power, and Verizon.

CSW has a whopping .6% of their student population with special education.

CSW was named a 2013 National Blue Ribbon School by the US Department of Education.

This Wilmington, Delaware school had an African-American population of 5.5% for the 2013-2014 academic year.

CSW was ranked #62 on Newsweek’s 2013 list of best schools in America.

For their monthly Board of Directors minutes, nothing has been put on their website since 3/25/14.

They haven’t updated their finances since 3/25/14 either….

For their federal aid, it doesn’t break it down into subgroups on that financial statement, so there is no way to find out how much they get from the federal government for IDEA-B funding, which is the funding schools get based on their number of IEPs.  But wait, I’ll look at their 2013 Audit.  Maybe that will give me some more information!  Nope, just shows the amount of federal funding left over after the 2012-2013 school year to be $45, 174.00.  So how much does Charter School of Wilmington get for their Federal IDEA-B funding?  Someone had to have paid for those 6 special ed students from the 2013-2014 school year.  6 out of 970….

Before the charter school lovers go nuts, yes, I know, this is a STEM school.  One of the best in the country.  I guess special ed kids aren’t good at math or science?

Let’s take a look at their application process.  Maybe there is a good reason why special ed kids don’t make it into this prestigious school.  I would talk to their admissions panel, but as per the CSW website that information is CONFIDENTIAL.  So how do you get in?  As an 8th grader, you have to take a placement test in December or January.  That sounds fair.  I guess only the best get in.  Wait a minute, nobody would know that, because their INTEREST RUBRIC SCORES for the tests, which include test scores, an essay, and a recommendation form, are CONFIDENTIAL too.  And their admission scoring is proprietary.  And if you wanted to find out what your child scored on the test, apparently that scoring won’t be shared by anyone in phone or in person.  Well I should just stop looking at the frequently asked questions tab and go straight to the admissions policy.

Top priority goes to students who express a specific interest in going to CSW.  This is measured on a point scale.  198 points is calculated based on their placement test, which covers math and reading.  The applicants report card grades for 7th and 8th grade carry a weight of up to 120 points.  Another maximum of 65 points can be awarded to a student who excels in teacher recommendations, enrollment in honors classes for Math or Science, extracurricular activities in Math or Science, and an essay the applicant gets to write.  If you get 325 points, you meet the requirements for the specific interest.  Great!

Now if you get less than 325 points, don’t lose hope!  Cause you can request an interview with the school.  You could have an “otherwise compelling eligibility” and the President of the School can consider ANY additional information about you to make a decision!  You also have to reside in the Red Clay School District.  And you can get extra consideration if you have a brother or sister that goes there, or one of your parents works there!

Well, let me take a look at the actual application and see what it says on there.  Oh wait, I missed the boat!  The 2014-2015 application closed on January 8th of this year.  Oh well.  Maybe I can google it.  Awesome, the Delaware DOE website has it!  But it’s from 1996….but I can check that out.  Dammit!  That’s their application to become a charter school.  I can’t find it anywhere online.  Does anyone know if it asks if the student has an IEP or special education?

With their preferred interest test, does anyone know if they accommodate students who do have an IEP when they take the test?  Hmm….  Sorry folks, I tried to get more information on special education at Charter School of Wilmington, but it appears my well has run dry.  But I won’t give up!