Controversial Republican-backed school-reform model on target to be phased out

BY: - July 22, 2021

The Innovative School District (ISD), a Republican-backed school reform model that has failed to produce results, could be phased out in two years.  A provision tucked inside the state Senate's proposed 2021-2023 budget calls for North Carolina to “Transition from the Innovative School District Model” and end plans to select additional schools for the district.

PW exclusive: State Board of Ed urged to jettison firm hired as part of controversial Innovative School District scheme

BY: - June 2, 2020

A confidential letter delivered to the State Board of Education alleges that the school management firm Achievement for All Children has failed to meet its contractual obligations in running Southside-Ashpole Elementary, to the detriment of its students. The letter, obtained by Policy Watch, recommends that state education officials terminate the contract — three years early — under which the firm oversees Southside-Ashpole, the lone school in the state’s controversial Innovative School District.

Superintendent Mark Johnson names former charter school headmaster as his chief of staff

BY: - September 28, 2018

N.C. Superintendent of Public Instruction Mark Johnson has named the former headmaster of a Rutherford County charter as his new chief of staff, Johnson’s office announced Friday. Johnson announced Joe Maimone’s appointment a few months after Maimone’s unexpected resignation from Thomas Jefferson Classical Academy, the Mooresboro charter he co-founded in 1998. Maimone has also served […]

On eve of vote, State Board of Education divided on contract with controversial school takeover operator

BY: - April 4, 2018

On the eve of a crucial vote, the State Board of Education is clearly split on a recommendation to approve a prospective operator for the Innovative School District that’s troubled by claims of ethical conflicts and myriad questions about their curriculum and limited track record. Board members are expected to vote Thursday morning on a contract […]

State Board of Education weighs charter’s contract with former state legislator, charter advisor

BY: - December 6, 2017

Members of North Carolina’s State Board of Education are expected to discuss in open session Thursday one Charlotte charter’s ethically knotty contract with a new charter management organization led by a former state charter advisor, a former state lawmaker and a longtime school choice advocate. As noted in a Charlotte Observer report in August, the […]

N.C. charter school leader hosts Dan Forest fundraiser attended by controversial evangelical minister

BY: - October 27, 2017

Tony Helton, one of North Carolina’s most influential charter school leaders, hosted a July fundraiser at his home for Lt. Gov. Dan Forest that was reportedly attended by an evangelical minister whose Rutherford County church has been accused of covering up sexual molestation and violent attempts to “purify” members of its congregation. Policy Watch confirmed […]