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OKLAHOMA: TPS gets $100,000 Gates Foundation grant for charter compact

grant-moneyTulsa Public Schools is among five districts nationwide selected for partnerships that officials say will improve collaboration between the district and its charter schools.

Through the partnership with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, TPS will receive a $100,000 grant to help with implementation of its new district-charter school compact.

The Gates Foundation announced its new district-charter collaboration partnerships — to include TPS and districts in Aldine, Texas; Lawrence, Mass.; San Jose, Calif.; and Spokane, Wash. — Wednesday in a teleconference from Houston.

The districts join 15 previous Gates Foundation district-charter partners.

“We are very pleased to be a part of this,” TPS Superintendent Keith Ballard said.

“This really is a community project in Tulsa. Our community partners are involved, and our school board is supportive. … Our charter partners have been marvelous partners with us in changing the trajectory of student lives.”

The Tulsa school board last week adopted a new compact with its three charter schools with guidance from the Gates Foundation on making it more collaborative and friendly.

District spokesman Chris Payne said the new compact will help in the effort “to tear down the walls between charter schools and our public school district. We want to increase transparency, do a better job of sharing data and best practices with our charter partners, etc.”

“We think it’s important that we leverage our relationship with charters to give children in the district the best education possible, bottom line,” he said.

TPS-sponsored charter schools are KIPP-Tulsa College Preparatory, Tulsa Lighthouse Charter School and Tulsa School of Arts and Sciences.

In addition to the $100,000, the district may be eligible for future grants through the Gates partnership toward fostering more collaboration.

The Gates Foundation announced a round of similar partnerships in December 2012 for districts in seven cities.

To date, the foundation has invested $25 million toward district-charter collaboration around the country, foundation officials said.

The partnerships “are part of the foundation’s continued efforts to provide every student with a high-quality public education that prepares them for success in college and career,” foundation officials said in a statement.

Source: Tulsa World – by Tim Stanley

View more articles on Oklahoma charter schools


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This entry was posted on January 30, 2014 by in Charter Schools, Oklahoma, States.


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