The Annual Governance Reporting Requirement for Charter Schools

The Annual Governance Reporting Requirement for Charter Schools

November 2, 2021 | Charter Administration, Personnel Management

TEA collects information about charter school board members and school officers each year, as required by Texas law and outlined in TEC 12.119(b).

This year’s deadline is December 1, 2021!

  • The 2021-22 Annual Governance Reporting Form for Open-Enrollment Charter Schools is due no later than Wednesday, December 1, 2021.
  • Charters must submit this information through the Charter School Tracking System (CSTS) in TEAL.
  • CSTS is now available for use and will remain open through the submission deadline.

Many of our charter clients asked if we could provide a form to give to their Board and Administrators to complete to fulfill the “paper copy” portion of the requirement – and just to make collecting the information easier.  Of course, we were happy to!  Download the 2021-22 Governance Reporting Data Collection form here. 

What Do I Need to Do to Prepare For the Submission?

You will need to gather the following information from all board members and key administrators (Board Members, Chief Officers, Campus Administrators, Superintendent, etc.):

  • Full Legal Name and former names
  • Email, phone numbers, mailing address, residence address
  • Position
  • Amount of annual compensation (if any) to be received during the 2020-21 school year from the charter holder, charter school, or contractor/management company doing business with the charter holder or charter school.

Have each officer sign a paper form with the above information. Ensure that each submission from a board member contains information that is consistent with the information registered with the Texas Secretary of State (SOS). Review the SOS management system to synchronize this information here: https://www.sos.state.tx.us/corp/sosda/index.shtml which will require a unique login. Once logged in, click on “Business Organizations”, enter the charter name under “Find Entity,” and review names under the section entitled “Management.” This information should be kept up-to-date in real time as board changes occur.

Each person being reported must also answer these questions on the signed statement, of which you’ll submit their signature date:

  • Is any relative within the third degree of consanguinity (i.e., your parent, grandparent, great-grandparent, child, grandchild, great-grandchild, sibling, aunt, uncle, niece, nephew) or within the third degree of affinity (i.e., your spouse or your spouse’s parent, grandparent, great-grandparent, child, grandchild, great-grandchild, sibling, aunt, uncle, niece, nephew) a member of the governing body of the sponsoring entity or the governing body of the charter school?
  • Will any relative(s) within the third degree of consanguinity or affinity (see definitions above) be employed by or receive any compensation or remuneration from the sponsoring entity, charter school, or the management company of the charter school?
  • Are you a registered voter?  And if yes, in which state?
  • Have you ever been convicted of a misdemeanor involving moral turpitude; a felony; an offense listed in TEC §37.007(a); or an offense listed in Article 62.001(5) Code of Criminal Procedures?
  • I am current in my training requirements as authorized in TEC §12.123 and outlined in 19 TAC §§100.1102-100.1105.

What other information is collected?

Several additional compliance items are also addressed in the Annual Governance Reporting task.  These include attestation that your charter:

  • Has posted the student code of conduct and notice setting forth the circumstances under which a person may be refused entry to school property on the charter’s website
  • Has posted the daily financial reports of the charter school on the charter’s website. Sample Month End Report
  • Has posted the names of all Board members on the home page of the charter’s website
  • Has posted the salary of the Superintendent or CEO on the charter’s website

In the Governance Report, you are asked to prove compliance with each of these by pasting the direct weblink to the location of each compliance item.

What Are the Training Requirements?

Training requirements are listed in the TEC and TAC:

Who Must be Trained

Commissioner Rules require that the following officials complete a training course (unless exemptions apply):

  • Board members (specific rules found here)
  • Chief Executive Officers
  • Central Administrative Officers
  • Campus Administrative Officers
  • Business Managers

Did you miss our free webinar on TEA Training Requirements? You can view it here!

When Must Training Occur?

  • Officials at new charters must complete the required training within a year of the date the charter agreement is signed.
  • New officials at existing charters must complete the required training in one calendar year from the date of taking office.
  • Existing officials at existing charters must complete all required hours each fiscal year.
  • Your charter’s required annual audit report (AFR) is the reporting mechanism to TEA to verify compliance with this requirement.  The final audit report will address your charter’s compliance and, when applicable, list any official not complete in their training requirements.

Here are some questions and answers related to training and Governance Reporting:

QUESTION: On the Governance Reporting form, when a charter is asked if their training requirements are current, is the charter answering for

  • the current year (2021, ie 2020-21 school year) or
  • for the 2021-22 school year?
  • In other words, when checking YES, is the charter reporting training is current as of the date of the governance report, which would mean has been completed for prior years AND in process of being completed, if not already completed, for the current year?

ANSWER: A charter school official must complete his or her training within one calendar year from their start at the school.  That person’s governance form needs to indicate that all the necessary training was done in that time period.  For example, let’s say a new board member of a charter school joins the board on September 1, 2019. He or she has from that date until September 1, 2020 to finish training; and he or she does not complete training.  When the board member files his/her governance form in November of 2020, he/she can report that they are current in the training requirement.  Because the 2020 governance is being submitted in the middle of his/her training year, the board member is not expected to have all of this year’s training done when the year’s only half over.  

QUESTION: If a charter did not complete all board/administration required training for 2019-20 school year and checks NO on the training requirements question, is their board/administration required to complete the training for the 2019-20 year as well as to complete training for the 2020-21 year?

ANSWER: If a board member/administrator failed to complete training that was required between September 1, 2019 and September 1, 2020, he/she would have to select “no” on his/her form in this year’s governance submission.  Two things would happen then:  The school will receive a red “x” on the training requirements indicator of the Charter School Performance Framework, and the board member/administrator will be expected to complete the number of hours missing from his/her 2019-2020 training year.  That will be in addition to whatever hours are required for his/her 2020-2021 training year.

QUESTION: If an administrator is retiring during the 2020-21 school year, is he required to complete the training?

ANSWER: It depends on when his/her training year is.  Let’s say I’m a principal.  My training year is September 1, 2020, through September 1, 2021.  I am current in my training for the 2019-2020 year.  My 2020-2021 training year doesn’t end until September 1, 2021.  If I know I am going to retire before that date, I will not have to report my lack of training…though of course it is best practice that I complete the training while I am serving at the charter.

Where Can I Find Training?

Charter School Success offers complete training plans for all new and returning officers. All training is online for your convenience and available 24/7. You can find all of our training plans — bundled and discounted for you — right here.

How Do I Submit the Governance Report to TEA?

  1. Login into TEAL (Your charter will need accounts: one for a submitter and one for an approver, who must be the Superintendent)
  2. Choose the Charter School Tracking System (CSTS) application
  3. Enter or select your charter organization information and choose Next
  4. Choose Existing Member or Officer Info to Update from the dropdown and/or build new information by clicking New. Note: One automated form must be completed for each board member and school officer. Printed paper copies must be maintained on campus and must be signed and dated by each individual for whom a form is submitted.
  5. Fill in the mandatory fields, clicking Next to move from one screen to the next.
  6. Once all of the data is entered for all board members and officers, submit to TEA.
  7. The Superintendent must approve and issue final submission to TEA.  The deadline is December 1, 2020.

There is still time to achieve compliance by December 1st!

Register for our online training or purchase a complete training bundle today!

Detailed instructions from TEA for completing the submission can be found here: https://tea.texas.gov/sites/default/files/2021-2022-governance-guidelines-and-instructions.pdf

Questions?

Ask questions, get answers and discuss this topic on the Charter School Community Roundtable now.