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Building A Growth Strategy - 2013 National Charter Schools Conference

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Stuart Ellis (Charter School Capital), Michael Connelly (Mosaica Education), Marshall Emerson (ICAN Schools), and Manny Rivera (Believe to Achieve) map out the three stages of charter school growth …

Stuart Ellis (Charter School Capital), Michael Connelly (Mosaica Education), Marshall Emerson (ICAN Schools), and Manny Rivera (Believe to Achieve) map out the three stages of charter school growth from start-up to expansion/growth mode to a mature/sustainable school.

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  • 1. Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. Building a Growth Strategy National Charter School Conference Washington, D.C. July 1, 2013
  • 2. 2 Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. Welcome.
  • 3. 3 Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. WHAT WE’LL COVER •  Charter school growth stages •  Challenges school operators face at each stage •  Best practices and takeaways from our experienced panel Agenda Presentation will be available for download
  • 4. 4 Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. WHO WE ARE Panelists •  Michael Connelly, CEO, Mosaica Education •  Marshall Emerson, Co-founder/CEO, ICAN Schools •  Manny Rivera, CEO, Believe to Achieve •  Stuart Ellis, CEO, Charter School Capital
  • 5. Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. Stages of Growth
  • 6. 6 Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. STAGES OF GROWTH#ofStudents Start-up Survival/Establish Growth Flexibility/Scalability Sustainable Maturity Efficiency Time (years)0 2-3 5-10 100% Students as a % of mature target 10-25% 25-90% 90-100%
  • 7. 7 Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. STAGES OF GROWTH Strategic approach Start-up Growth Sustainability Financing Facilities Community involvement Academic accountability Operational support
  • 8. 8 Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. STAGES OF GROWTH Strategic approach Start-up Growth Sustainability Financing Any liquidity Facilities In target locale Community involvement Awareness Academic accountability Establish program Operational support Outside experts
  • 9. 9 Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. STAGES OF GROWTH Strategic approach Start-up Growth Sustainability Financing Any liquidity Flexibility/ scalability Facilities In target locale Modular Community involvement Awareness Fulfill the promise Academic accountability Establish program Measure program Operational support Outside experts Transitional resources
  • 10. 10 Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. STAGES OF GROWTH Strategic approach Start-up Growth Sustainability Financing Any liquidity Flexibility/ scalability Cost Facilities In target locale Modular Curb appeal/cost Community involvement Awareness Fulfill the promise Fabric of community Academic accountability Establish program Measure program Continuous improvement Operational support Outside experts Transitional resources In-house team
  • 11. 11 Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. STAGES OF GROWTH Strategic approach Start-up Growth Sustainability Financing Any liquidity Flexibility/ scalability Cost Facilities In target locale Modular Curb appeal/cost Community involvement Awareness Fulfill the promise Fabric of community Academic accountability Establish program Measure program Continuous improvement Operational support Outside experts Transitional resources In-house team
  • 12. 12 Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. STAGES OF GROWTH •  Different structures of working capital – Receivable sale – Term loan – Line of credit •  Facilities financing options – Lease option – Bond – Traditional bank loan •  Regarding costs of funds, all costs are NOT created equal – Evaluate total $ cost rather than % rate – Consider fixed transactional costs and penalties, in addition to annual rate related to costs Finance considerations
  • 13. Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. The Start-up Phase
  • 14. 14 Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. STAGES OF GROWTH Start-up Common Misperceptions Founding team to “create” best practices Teachers are also founders Business people are best fit to manage charter schools “If you build it, they will come”
  • 15. 15 Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. STAGES OF GROWTH Start-up •  Challenges at transition from Start-up to Growth phases – Access to funds – Resources (HR) – Other? Marshall speak to this series of slides The Challenges Finding good leadership and teachers Securing resources Finding suitable facilities Healthy enrollment Sustaining high performance as network expands
  • 16. 16 Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. STAGES OF GROWTH Start-up Meeting Challenges Create great job description and roles Screen leadership and teachers diligently Funding – grants, lines of credit, donations, financing Admissions and enrollment strategy Expansion planning
  • 17. 17 Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. STAGES OF GROWTH Start-up Best Practices Study and meet with schools doing things well Don’t be a master of everything. Master a few things and do them really well Build genuine and robust relationship with teachers, leaders, vendors, and external constituents Pay close attention to the budget Pay even closer attention to student progress data Do not waiver in your belief or mission
  • 18. 18 Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. STAGES OF GROWTH Start-up Challenges Approach Financing Obtaining resources to open successfully Grants, philanthropy, investment partners Facilities Find suitable space Work with real estate partners to assist in finding move-in ready space Community involvement Differentiate school from others Execute admissions and outreach plan Academic Ensure academic model will close any achievement gap and challenge students Implement academic model based on best practice Operational support Partner with experts Wear multiple hats
  • 19. Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. The Growth Phase
  • 20. 20 Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. STAGES OF GROWTH Growth Common Misperceptions “After the 3rd year, all will be in place and it’s smooth sailing!” Performance and accountability requirements will be the same as when charter was approved Professional and leadership development will be limited because teachers and principals will be fully trained No need to change routines or systems We’ll have sufficient funds from operating revenue to support expansion Facility upgrades will be minimal, if at all
  • 21. 21 Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. STAGES OF GROWTH Growth Challenges Adjusting to higher expectations and new/changing accountability requirements Advancing levels of student performance Managing growth with limited resources Inefficient or inadequate operating and data systems Annual loss of quality teachers and leaders Ability to recruit and hire new teachers Lack of capital for FFE, marketing, professional development, and curriculum
  • 22. 22 Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. STAGES OF GROWTH Growth Manny speak to this series of slides Meeting Challenges Build in longer term expectations for growth School improvement plans must have multi-year goals and measures Preparation for roll out of Common Core State Standards Greater access to resources and technology Conduct annual Quality Review Make “capacity building” a priority Enable teachers to track student progress with improved assessment systems
  • 23. 23 Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. STAGES OF GROWTH Growth Best Practices Prepare staff for school opening throughout the summer rather than 5-10 days before first day Build school culture Focus on continuous leadership Focus on teacher training and development Create professional learning communities (PLCs) and “data teams” Expand your community vision of learning environment to 24/7
  • 24. Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. 24 Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. The Sustainable Maturity Phase
  • 25. 25 Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. STAGES OF GROWTH Sustainable maturity Common Misperception Challenges are easier to meet as you scale
  • 26. 26 Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. STAGES OF GROWTH Sustainable maturity The Challenges Developing and executing a sustainable strategic plan Anticipate challenges Identify aspiration – mission, vision, core values, SWOT Right team to implement strategic vision and plan Reevaluate financing to match your needs
  • 27. 27 Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. STAGES OF GROWTH Sustainable maturity Meeting Challenges Hire the management team with the right experiences Assemble a strong and diverse advisory board Raise institutional funding Develop a five-year plan establishing goals, defining/redefining mission and update every two years Don’t take on opportunities beyond your mission and core competencies
  • 28. 28 Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. STAGES OF GROWTH Sustainable maturity Best Practices Define your objectives clearly and communicate them extensively both internally and externally Celebrate your successes and analyze your failures Develop data-driven culture and make sure you retain the passion that got you started Take what you do seriously with out taking yourself too seriously Develop pillars that define what you do Assess performance regularly and use assessment to improve
  • 29. Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. Recap
  • 30. 30 Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. STAGES OF GROWTH Recap Start-up Growth Sustainability Financing Any liquidity Flexibility/ scalability Cost Facilities In target locale Modular Curb appeal/cost Community involvement Awareness Fulfill the promise Fabric of community Academic accountability Establish program Measure program Continuous improvement Operational support Outside experts Transitional resources In-house team
  • 31. 31 Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. STAGES OF GROWTH •  Stages in charter school lifecycle present very different challenges •  Strategy and focus needs to vary significantly as you grow •  Leverage experts at every stage to allow you to focus on educating kids Key takeaways
  • 32. 32 Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. slideshare.net/charterschoolcapital
  • 33. Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. Questions?
  • 34. Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. 34 Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. Thank you.
  • 35. 35 Copyright © 2013 Charter School Capital, Inc. Stuart Ellis 877-272-1001 sellis@charterschoolcapital.org