SB 1882 PARTNERSHIPS
In 2017, the Texas Legislature passed Senate Bill 1882, which grants additional funding to school districts that agree to work collaboratively with nonprofit partners. These new partnerships offer SAISD the opportunity to expand options and resources provided to neighborhood schools, bring in targeted expertise for innovation and support, and empower educators with greater autonomy.
SAISD has a long-standing history of working with nonprofit organizations. These new SB 1882 partnerships allow schools to engage mission-aligned nonprofits at a deeper level for the benefit of students and staff.
Existing schools interested in pursuing a partnership must first complete the district’s rigorous in-district charter application process, called the Annual Call for Quality Schools, which includes the legal requirement that a majority of teachers and parents support the school’s plan. The Annual Call process takes one school year to complete. All partners will be extensively vetted by the school leadership team and district staff prior to being evaluated and approved by the SAISD Board. A partnership agreement between the nonprofit organization and SAISD Board must then be submitted to TEA for review and approval.
Each nonprofit organization will hire a small number of staff to support and coach the school’s leadership, provide professional development opportunities for school staff, and ensure the nonprofit meets all of the district’s expectations, such as producing an annual financial audit. The partner will also create a campus nonprofit governing board comprised of community stakeholders and professionals with the experience and passion necessary to support the school in achieving its goals. The nonprofit governing board will collaborate with the campus in selecting the curriculum, school calendar, and student assessments. If a change in leadership is ever needed at the school, the nonprofit partner will work closely with the district and the school’s community to select the school’s principal.
At any partnership school, the SAISD Board retains ultimate authority and oversight over the school, which will always remain an SAISD campus. The district will hold the partner accountable for strong academic and financial performance through a board-approved performance contract and regular monitoring of the school’s charter by district staff and the SAISD Board.
The district can end the partnership or revoke the in-district charter at any time if any of the following occurs: (i) the schools fail to meet their 3 or 5-year performance metrics; (ii) the school or partner violates applicable state or federal law; (iii) the schools fail to meet generally accepted accounting standards; or (iv) after two years, the schools are rated as “Improvement Required” or are in the bottom 5% in comparison to all district campuses based on academic performance.
SENATE BILL 1882 PARTNERS
Senate Bill 1882 partnerships are governed by a partnership agreement that ensures strong accountability for both the partner and the district. Partnership schools are in-district charter schools that remain SAISD schools and are subject to laws on student safety, special education, student enrollment, and other critical protections. The partnership agreements are typically for a term of 10 years, but each in-district charter school within the partnership is subject to a rigorous performance contract that is monitored annually and subject to a renewal evaluation every 3 to 5 years.
Additionally, SAISD can end the partnership if (i) the partner violates applicable state or federal law; (ii) the partner breaches the partnership agreement; (iii) the partner fails to meet generally accepted accounting standards or fails to produce an unqualified (“clean”) financial audit; (iv) two or more schools fail to meet their 3 or 5-year performance metrics; or (v) after two years, two or more of the schools are rated as “Improvement Required” or are in the bottom 5% in comparison to all district campuses based on academic performance.