New “Safer at Home” Restrictions from the City of Philadelphia
In response to rising COVID-19 cases in Philadelphia, the City and Department of Public Health have announced changes to restrictions on businesses, events and gatherings, and other activities to help flatten the epidemic curve, prevent hospitals from becoming overwhelmed, and reduce the number of COVID-19 deaths. The new “Safer at Home” restrictions are effective November 20, 2020 through January 1, 2021. An extension of these restrictions and/or the implementation of additional restrictions is possible depending on trends in the spread of coronavirus in the city.

Notably, these new restrictions require high schools and colleges to move to online instruction only, with the exception of clinical instruction for students in health sciences.
House Bill 703
House Bill 703 was approved by Governor Wolf on October 29th. The Bill requires the publication of the charter school Board of Trustees’ email addresses on the school’s website. Specifically, the Act requires that within 180 days of the effective date (the effective date is 60 days from enactment (by Saturday, June 26, 2021), the email addresses be published on the school’s publicly accessible internet website in a location and manner that are easily accessible.

Email addresses may be used by members of the public, school staff, and students to communicate with school board directors and charter school board trustees regarding matters of school governance.
DPO Feedback on SPR Updates 
The District is developing a new report on student and school performance, which would replace the existing School Progress Reports (SPRs) beginning for the 2020-2021 school year. This report will align closely to the Board of Education's Goals and Guardrails.

As a reminder, the Division of Evaluation, Research, and Accountability (ERA) is gathering feedback on what measures should—or should not—be included for this report. Please click here for more information and to share your feedback. If you have questions, please reach out to performanceframework@philasd.org.
2019-20 District-Wide Survey Results
As a reminder, District-Wide Survey data from SY 2019-20 is now available and ready for review on the District’s website. School level PDF reports can be accessed here via the Office of Research & Evaluation. To explore data more dynamically, visit the District-Wide Surveys website here.
In-Person Learning
If your school's first day for instruction within the building has changed from what is currently on our CSO website via the Charter Sector Reopening 2020-21 page, please let us know by completing the form here.

Additionally, The Pennsylvania Department of Health (PDH) and the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) are distributing cloth masks to schools for each student. If you would like to obtain free masks for your school, please reach out to School District of Philadelphia (SDP) contact, Chris Fuscellaro, at cfuscellaro@philasd.org to arrange pickup. As a reminder, please see guidance regarding the Universal Face Coverings Order, linked here.
Monday, November 23, 2020

Please remember to update the PHLConnectED Tab in Infinite Campus (IC) with the SIM and IMEI number once a Comcast code or hotspot is assigned to a student. Also ensure that all updates are within IC by Monday, November 23, 2020 so that information is migrated to the new PHLConnectEd tab.
Preliminary Report Review Window
Various Dates
The CSO will be sharing a Preliminary Report that contains findings in the Organizational Compliance and Viability Domain that will be included in the 2020 Annual Charter Evaluation (ACE). Via Epicenter, schools will be able to both review findings and, if necessary, provide the CSO with evidence that demonstrates compliance. 
  • Shared with schools: Tuesday, December 1, 2020
  • Responses due by: Friday, December 11, 2020

The CSO will endeavor to provide a response to all feedback prior to the final ACE Preview Window in late 2020.
SY 2020-21 Calendar of Collections
Various Dates & Times

Please refer to the following upcoming Calendar of Collections deadlines:
  • Approved Board Minutes from July 1, 2020 - September 30, 2020: November 1, 2020
  • Audited Financial Statements for FY20: December 31, 2020
IU-26 Charter School Special Education Meetings
Beginning Tuesday, December 1, 2020, the Office of Specialized Instructional Services will be holding virtual meetings to discuss Intermediate Units (IUs). To view the full list of dates, click here. For more information, please visit the Office of Specialized Services’s website here, or contact Russell Washington at ruwashington@philasd.org.

How is your school celebrating the upcoming holidays?
Share your activities or pictures with the CSO!

HBCU College Fair
Tuesday November 17, 2020
4:00 PM

The School District of Philadelphia (SDP) will be hosting the Malcolm Bernard Historically Black Virtual College Fair on Tuesday, November 17, 2020. The Malcolm Bernard Historically Black Colleges and Universities College Fair is the largest HBCU College Fair on the East Coast. This historic college recruiting week has a track record of attracting nearly 12,000 students each year from numerous states including NY, PA, and MA.

For interested students, please encourage them to bring copies of their test scores and transcripts, as some colleges and universities may be offering on site acceptances. Students can register here. Click here to view the flyer.
Virtual FAFSA Pop Up Event #2
Monday, November 23, 2020
5:00 PM - 7:00 PM

In partnership with 12+, Promise Corps, College Possible and PHENND, the School District of Philadelphia (SDP) is hosting several FAFSA completion pop up events, in an effort to support students and their families with financial aid completion. Each event will be held virtually. The second event will be hosted by College Possible on Monday, November 23, 2020, between 5:00 PM - 7:00 PM. Registration is required by clicking here.
Essay Contest for Charter School Students
Friday, November 20, 2020

The Pennsylvania Coalition of Public Charter Schools is co-sponsoring a “Thankful for my Academic Home: My Charter School” essay writing contest for students. Click the flyer linked here for more information on how students can enter. The deadline for submissions is Friday, November 20, 2020. If you have any questions regarding the contest rules or eligibility, please contact Brandie Karpew at b.karpew@pacharters.org.
Turning Points for Children
Various Dates & Times

Turning Points for Children, a non-profit organization that supports with facilitating Parent Cafes, workshops, and community events for parents and youth, has several upcoming opportunities that are free and accessible to the public. On Tuesday, November 17, 2020 they will be hosting a Budgeting Workshop where participants will learn how to better manage their money and save for future planning needs. Those interested can register here. They will also be hosting multiple workshops on Wednesday, November 18, 2020 including a virtual workshop for youth ages 14-21, titled ‘You Are Worthy, Flower. The goal is to help youth find a way to tap into their resilience during trying times. Registration details are here.

The organization works with residents, schools, and libraries within a Community Umbrella Agency (CUA) 3 in Philadelphia. Questions can be directed to Christopher Sponsler at csponsler@turningpoints.phmc.org.
Minds Matter
Sunday, November 29, 2020

Minds Matter, a four-year college access program that begins in students’ freshman year of high school, is accepting applications for its Freshman Bridge Program. Minds Matter offers its students a combination of individualized mentor support and group tutoring that provides students with the resources, information, and guidance they need to gain admission to, enroll in, and graduate from four-year colleges. Students must have a minimum 3.0 GPA and meet Federal Income Eligibility Guidelines for free or reduced-priced lunch. Additional requirements can be viewed here.

Interested students are encouraged to submit an application by the deadline, Sunday, November 29, 2020, as seats are limited. Students and parents/guardians must both complete separate applications. For more information about Minds Matter, click here. The application can be accessed here. Direct questions should be directed to Catherine Qiu at catherine.qiu@mindsmatterphilly.org.
Free Classes Offered by Kimmel Center
The Kimmel Center has announced that it will be offering free digital arts education to schools throughout the City, including charter schools. Students will have the option of choosing between multiple free creative art programs that will be taught by an experienced teaching staff. School teachers will also have access to these “Creative Stages” programs online. To learn more about the Kimmel’s free creative arts education programs, click here, or contact the Kimmel Center via email at Education@kimmelcenter.org.
Fresh Artists
Fresh Artists, a Philadelphia-based non-profit with the mission to empower K-12 children through the power of art-making, is encouraging all registered art teachers in the charter sector to apply for annual grants. The grants are designed to help schools struggling with cuts in art funding by providing free classroom art supplies. 

If your school has art teachers, please encourage them to click here to learn about registration criteria as well as additional announcements and upcoming giveaways such as Surprise Supplies and Fresh Artist's pop-up give-away of bulk materials. For more information on Fresh Artists and offered opportunities and programs for students and teachers, visit the website here. To be connected directly with Fresh Artists, complete the form here.