State Board of Education discusses possible action against Epic Charter Schools

OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – The State Board of Education is having a meeting where they’ll discuss possible action for Epic Charter Schools.

In October, a report by the state auditor found that Epic Charter Schools owed the state $11.2 million, most of it for overpaying administrative costs. 

The school hasn’t paid back the money, and the Board of Education is discussing what the next course of action will be.

In the meantime, some lawmakers have tried proposing bills to create more transparency.

“There were several bills run this session on the Democrat side, the Republican side, that would’ve said [to] education management organizations like Epic, ‘We need to know how you’re spending those dollars. These are tax payer dollars,” Rep. Melissa Provenzano, D-Tulsa, said.

Read More

Biden promised to end federal funding of for-profit charter schools. A new report explains how they operate.

They set up nonprofit schools and then direct the schools’ business operations to related corporations. For example, it says, one of the largest EMOs, National Heritage Academies, “locks schools in with a ‘sweeps contract’ where virtually all revenue is passed to the for-profit management corporation, NHA, that runs the school.”

“In other cases, the EMO recommends their own related companies for services that include leasing, personnel services, and curriculum,” it says.

The report was produced by the Network for Public Education, an education advocacy group that opposes charter schools. It was written by Carol Burris, executive director of the Network for Public Education and a former award-winning New York principal, and Darcie Cimarusti, the network’s communications director.

The authors wrote that despite “strict regulations against the disbursement of funds from the federal Charter Schools Program (CSP) to charter schools operated by for-profit entities,” they identified more than 440 charter

Read More

How the Pandemic Helped Schools Integrate Video Games

The pandemic has impacted many industries. Esports and video games got a boost as it was a sport that did not need to be in person. These online continuations of the season gave a boost to the industry as well as popular games such as Animal Crossing, Among Us and the resurgence of Minecraft defined the quarantine. This, coupled with many students being in distance learning, gave streaming and video games a huge platform. The beginning of the pandemic was all about Animal Crossing which was a game that crossed into the mainstream. There were even politicians like President Biden who made their own island to show that they knew what was ‘hip’ and ‘cool’ with the youth.

This is all a fancy way of saying that the pandemic created an environment where streaming and video games collided. What isn’t talked about in relation to streaming and video games is

Read More

Bozeman high schools report fewer Fs despite pandemic challenges | Education

Despite a challenging start to the school year, Bozeman School District’s two high schools reported an overall lower number of failed courses for the fall semester compared to the past school year.

The principals at Bozeman High School and Gallatin High School reported seeing a concerning number of students receiving an F in at least one class during fall’s mid-semester mark. But through flexible grading options and support from teachers, fewer students received failing grades in the first semester.

“Teachers were really willing to work with students,” said Gallatin High Principal Erica Schnee.

By semester’s end, 3.3% of Bozeman High in-person students received an F, compared to 8% of Bozeman High students from last year. At Gallatin High, 8% of in-person students failed — the school is in its first year.

After noticing a higher-than-normal number of failing students halfway through the fall semester, conversations began among teachers about how

Read More