Today I assume the role of CEO of the Texas Charter Schools Association (TCSA). I couldn’t be more excited to lead the organization that is tasked with telling the stories of the incredible work you and your dedicated staffs are doing, and the students’ lives you’re changing. The responsibility of being the voice for the profound-and difficult-work you are doing every day is not lost on me, or the rest of the TCSA team. Thank you for trusting us to represent you.
While TCSA wears many hats, the one that we never take off is advocating for policies at the federal, state, and local levels that will allow charter schools to continue to open, expand, and operate with autonomy and flexibility, while being responsible stewards of taxpayer money. One benefit of TCSA’s advocacy work will impact your budget this year as you receive, for the first time ever, state funding for facilities costs.
In the coming legislative session, TCSA will work to not only protect this funding, but also convert the $60 million allotted in the current budget from a fixed amount of money to a per-student allotment that grows over time. In addition, we’ll be working to push back on mandates that would impact your ability to make decisions that deliver on your mission and stop local governments from blocking your ability to grow through zoning and permitting decisions, among many other policies.
Our work on your behalf isn’t limited to the Capitol building. We also advocate for you with the Texas Education Agency and State Board of Education. From working to make TEA regulations fairer and provide opportunities to appeal regulatory decisions, to working with the State Board of Education to expand the Permanent School Fund’s Charter School Bond Guarantee Program.
The success we have enjoyed in securing facilities funding, among other things, has led to much more intense and vocal opposition to charter schools. You need TCSA now more than ever. The 296,000 students you’re educating are counting on us to make sure your ability to serve them continues. And with 141,000 names on charter school waiting lists, there’s no sign that the demand for what you’re offering is slowing down.
Your partnership is crucial to our success in advocating for your interests and we hope you will renew your membership today. In addition to benefiting from TCSA’s ongoing advocacy work, membership brings additional benefits, including:
- Discounted legal products, including model board policies, Student Code of Conduct, and a TCSA model personnel handbook;
- Access to Learning Zone, TCSA’s online training portal, and discounted registration rates for the Texas Charter Schools Conference;
- Legal information and advice, as well as updates and alerts on specific matters pertaining to public charter schools;
- Tools to engage parents on advocacy efforts with the legislature;
- Access to a growing market of solution providers and strategically aligned partnerships with negotiated pricing and contract terms;
- Resources and advice for navigating TEA requirements for your school’s growth and expansion.
If you join or renew by September 30, your school will receive an updated TCSA model personnel handbook for free.
We know that you have many tough decisions to make when it comes to balancing your schools’ books. Joining TCSA may mean not hiring a new teacher or foregoing something else that you need. We know you’re counting and watching every penny. But, having a strong TCSA in your corner is not a luxury. You need us to be your eyes, ears, and voice to ensure you can keep doing what you’re doing so well.
Will you please take a minute today to renew or begin your membership with TCSA? We know you count on us-and we count on you too.
Thank you for all you do and for your previous support. I look forward to meeting and working with you in the coming months.
HOW TO JOIN OR RENEW:
Step 1: Login to the Quality Member Portal
Step 2: Complete the Online Membership Application
Upon submission of the online application, an invoice will be automatically generated and sent directly to the accounting contact email listed on the application.
Step 3: Remit your Membership Dues to:
Texas Charter Schools Association (TCSA)
700 Lavaca Street, Suite 930
Austin, TX 78701
If you have questions, please contact Nadia Luna.
Thank you for your continued support of charter schools in the great state of Texas.