When Newark Charter School had its major modification for their high school approved in 2012, then Secretary of Education Lillian Lowery gave very specific conditions for the approval. One of them was to offer free and reduced lunch for the students of NCS. Another was to develop an outreach plan so their demographics were more consistent with that of the 5 mile radius they draw students from. The below letter from Lillian Lowery was written about a month before she resigned as the Secretary. But this was their approval. Some have referred to this as “The Lowery Doctrine”.
It is obvious the Board of Directors at Newark Charter School have ignored this condition to their modification. Four years later and a Delaware Secretary of Education has yet to see their Outreach Plan. Lowery never got it. Murphy never got it. Godowsky never got it. But here was are, as Newark Charter School has its first graduating class, and NO Outreach Plan. As of their September 30th count by last school year, they had less African-American students than the year before. They did go up in students with disabilities from 5.6% to 6.5%. And their Hispanic population went up a little bit. But that is not the same as an actual Outreach plan. Where is this NCS Head of School Greg Meece? For all the talk and bluster coming out of this school, no one at the top of this school has delivered what they were supposed to. I’ve heard parents say they are attempting to rectify their demographic situation, but when they were given a direct order by the Dept. of Education, they blew it off. For a school that seems to want others to follow their perceived notion of “the letter of the law” they sure do cherry-pick what to follow…
Newark Charter School Board President Stephen Dressel is claiming they joined the lawsuit against the Christina School District and the Delaware Department of Education, along with 14 other charter schools, and actually said “This is not a step we take lightly.” Yeah right! Dressel sent a letter to NCS parents and staff today about the suit. No doubt to rile them up more than they already are. I’m sure they will blast me on their new Facebook page, Parent Networking. Since NCS Parents had a few moles (guess what chumps, you still do). Greg Meece, Stephen Dressel and Joanne Schlossberg started this whole mess when Christina passed their referendum. They know exactly what they are doing here. Maybe that’s why they had their 16 minute board meeting in September so they could rush to executive session to talk about this. I have no doubt they were salivating at the opportunity. If anyone doesn’t see this for what it really is, they are fooling themselves.
Because of the lawsuit, any communication around this issue is probably not allowable by FOIA since it would be a part of litigation. But we all know who started this and why. Greg Meece. The “savior” of Delaware public education. It will be interesting to see how the Delaware DOE reacts to this. After all their boasts about NCS, look what they did. I have a feeling there is a lot more to this. All I know is the ESSA Student and School Supports Discussion Group in an hour and 15 minutes is going to be very interesting. How can this subject not come up?
Funny how NCS brings up taxpayer dollars when the whole district to charter funding formula by itself is flawed. NCS and the other charters are about to learn a very important lesson called “you don’t understand district funding”. And how does this work when Donald Patton, who sits on the board of Las Americas ASPIRAS, is also an administrator in the Christina School District? Isn’t that a HUGE conflict of interest?