The National Alliance for Public Charter Schools (NAPCS) is hosting its 14th annual conference in Las Vegas, N.V. from Sunday, June 29th until Wednesday July 2nd. The NAPCS is an organization that advocates for students enrolled in or hoping to attend charter schools.
Charter schools are schools that receive public funding, but act independently. These schools don’t fall under the guidelines of conventional school districts, so they can attract students from large areas and backgrounds. Sin City will attract an extra 4,000 people who are touching down at Mandalay Bay Hotel & Resort next week to speak on the future of the charter school movement.
Charter schools are public schools with somewhat of a private school atmosphere, barring the fact that they are open to all children, do not charge tuition, and have no special entrance requirements.
[Check out our INFOGRAPHIC illustrating the state of charter schools.]
The NAPCS conference will focus on five categories: instruction, leadership, policy, operations, and governance.
As charter schools are known for implementing alternative learning strategies in the classrooms, there will be quite a bit of talk at the conference about new ways to advance content in the classroom, ways to innovate curricula, and other classroom-specific topics. These sessions will be primarily geared toward teachers, school leaders, and education specialists.
Charter schools have a reputation of breaking the mold from the iron clad cultural paradigm that has taken a hold of the nation’s public schools, and for that reason there might be some adjustment for parents who are putting their children in an educational environment that differs from their own.
There’s a strong likelihood that parents of children who attend charter schools may not have attended charters themselves, as charter school’s enrollment in the U.S. has increased 635 percent since the year 1990. These sessions will focus on dealing with the leadership strategies of tomorrow’s charter schools, including school culture and hiring staff.
The political landscape impacts charter schools just as it would any other public school. The NAPCS has clear political connections; Jeb Bush, Jr. serves on the board of directors. These sessions will focus on overcoming what the NAPCS website calls “policy-induced obstacles.”
It takes a village to raise a child, and the same could be said about running a school. Teachers alone don’t keep a school’s doors open, that’s why back-office employees such as financial support professionals, facilities workers, and public relations and communications specialists should be kept up to date on the best ways to keep a charter school’s day-to-day operations running smoothly.
Oversight of a charter schools comes with responsibility and demands a certain amount of foresight. These sessions will focus on training, planning, judging school quality, and charter renewals.
"Who Attends." National Alliance for Public Charter Schools. NAPCS, 1 Jan. 2014. Web. 25 June 2014. National Alliance for Public Charter Schools.