Skip Navigation

School Board

HCPS publishes minutes of School Board meetings after Board approval. Although the online minutes do not include signatures, citizens may arrange to review the official documents by completing a public records request with the Communications Department.

901 E. Kennedy Boulevard, Tampa
Tuesday, September 19, 2017

The School Board of Hillsborough County, Florida, met in Workshop Session Tuesday, September 19,

2017, at 9 a.m., in the School Board Auditorium, 901 East Kennedy Boulevard, Tampa, with Superintendent Jeff Eakins, and Board Members Lynn L. Gray, Sally Harris, Melissa Snively, CindyStuart, and Susan Valdes (arrived 9:12) present. Chair Cindy Stuart presided.

Absent: April Griffin, Tamara P.Shamburger

Board Attorney – James Porter

Chief of Staff: Alberto Vazquez, Ed.D. Deputy Superintendent: Van Ayres

Chief of Schools, Administration: Harrison Peters

Assistant Superintendents/Division Chiefs:

Academic Support and Federal Programs –Tracye Brown

Business – Gretchen Saunders

Diversity – Minerva Spanner-Morrow

Educational Leadership and Professional Development – Tricia McManus

Teaching and Learning – Debbie Cook

Communications and Media Officer – Grayson Kamm Media Outreach, Department Manager – Tanya ArjaAdministrative Secretary (Recording) – Kandee King

Approximately 15 people were in theaudience, including other school district personnel. Chair Stuart called the meeting to orderat 9 a.m.

(1)  National Association of Charter School Authorizers (NACSA) Evaluation

This workshop was held to provide the results of the NACSA Authorizer Evaluation. During this presentation information will be presented on how the District can Measure, Act, and Improve this process.

Jenna Hodgens, General Director of Charter Office, introduced Beth Seling and Heather Wendling from

NACSA who provided a PowerPoint outlining their observations and recommendations.

Hillsborough County Public Schools (HCPS) is one of seven districts from across the state who are members of NACSA. HCPS has been a member since 2001. Without the partnership of NACSA this evaluation would not be possible.

Beth Seling began the presentation giving an overview of NACSA, the evaluation process, evaluation results, and next steps.

Today’s Goals

  • Understand the purpose of NACSA authorizer evaluations and components of the evaluation process.
  • Understand the key strengths and priorities for improvement of Hillsborough County Public Schools’ authorizing program.
  • Discuss next steps for the Board’s role in leveraging the evaluation report to continue to ensure quality authorizing in Hillsborough County.


  • To improve student achievement through responsible charter school oversight in the publicinterest.
  • Not-For-Profit, Non-Partisan, Membership Association
  • 124 Authorizer Members, representing 3,700 charter schools (approximately 60% of charterschools)
  • Authorizer Development Services include, authorizer start-up, application decision-making, performance management, Board and Staff training, authorizer evaluation, and due diligence.
  • The Principles of Charter School Authorizing consists of maintaining high standards, upholdingschool autonomy, and protecting student/public interest to improve educational outcomes.

Evaluation Purpose

  • Provide the authorizer with a reflective, formative analysis of its practices against Florida Principles & Standards for Quality Charter School Authorizing.
  • Synthesize the authorizer’s primary strengths and priorities for improvement with actionablefeedback.
  • Consider the authorizer’s core practices, organizational structure, and capacity, all through the lens of the overall quality of its schools.

Evaluation Structure

  • Accountability – Overall, the authorizer only approves applications that meet rigorous evaluation criteria and holds schools accountable for their academic, financial, and organizational performance.
  • Access for all students – Access means the equal opportunity for all students to attend quality public charter schools. The authorizer increases access to quality public education by ensuring that all charter schools are meeting their equitable obligations and commitments, including for open enrollment; for transparent, consistent enforcement of student discipline; for meeting the needs of student identified with disabilities and English Learners; for providing safe and adequatefacilities and transportation; and by providing high-performing charter schools with opportunities to grow.
  • Defining and respecting school autonomy – The authorizer honors and preserves charter school autonomies, ensuring schools have ample opportunities to adapt as needed to meet the needs of their students.
  • Authorizing procedures and capacity – The authorizer’s procedures support the implementation of high-quality authorizing practices and the authorizer has the capacity, in terms of staffing and resources, to carry out its authorizing duties effectively.

Evaluation Process

  • Comprehensive desk audit
  • Two-day site visit
  • Draft report(for authorizer review)
  • Final report and presentation

Evaluation Sources

  • Evaluation Evidence
    • Policies and protocols
    • School leader interviews
    • Board and staff interviews
    • Authorizer observations
    • Case histories
    • Record of decision-making

NACSA Authorizer Evaluation of Hillsborough County PublicSchools (HCPS)

Key Strengths

  • HCPS’s Board of Directors and management team are dedicated to ensuring quality charterschools for their students, and staff understand their duties and obligations to uphold charter school quality and autonomy.
  • HCPS’ application decision-making process is rigorous and transparent.
  • HCPS conducts frequent and continuous monitoring of its charter schools to protect students’ rights and ensure all students have access.

Key Recommendations

  • Develop a strategic plan for the CSO, including a vision and goals for charter schools in Hillsborough County; incorporate this planas an explicit component of the District’s overall plan for improving student achievement.
  • Establish and implement rigorous standards of academic, financial, and organizational performance, broadly applicable to all schools, and incorporatethose standards into the charter contract.
  • Establish the District’s performance expectations as the basis for high-stakes decisions related tocharter schools (intervention, renewal, termination).
  • Ensure adequate staff resources for conducting key authorizing duties effectively.

Next Steps

  • Short-Term
    • Review final evaluation report.
    • Identify and prioritize the Board’s role in implementing and supporting recommendations for improvement.
  • Long-Term
    • Ensure that resource allocation for the District’s authorizing program keeps pace with the
    • growth of its charter portfolio.
    • Require the District’s overall strategy for improving student achievement to incorporatecharter schools as a key lever.

There was general discussion to include:

Emphasis on the strategic plan, charter schools are a part of ourdistrict and should operate under our strategic plan. Discussion regarding KPI’s and monitoring, charter or not all KPI’s look the same.

There are currently 54 approved Charter Schools with 49 of the schools operational.

All Charter Schools in Hillsborough County are not-for-profit, however there are profit organizations that manage Charter Schools.

Currently 7 of the 67 districts in Florida are members of NACSA. This membership is not a requirement, however; it offers HCPS valuable tools such as this evaluation.

We should not be waiting for a school to become a "Double "F” before we move toward closing them, however; we are bound by certain statutes with regard to grading of Charter Schools.

HCPS has a great partnership with our CharterSchools and look forward to seeing the recommendations implemented.

With no further discussion the workshop adjourned at 10:13 a.m. (Audio recording on file.)

HCPS publishes minutes of School Board meetings after Board approval. Although the online minutes do not include signatures, citizens may arrange to review the official documents by completing a public records request with the Communications Department.

Search for School
Find a School
School Locator

Locate your attendance area school

School Locator