22nd Annual California Charter Schools Conference Highlights
The 22st Annual California Charter Schools Conference, held March 16-19, 2015 at the Sacramento Convention Center in Sacramento, CA, was host to 3,000 charter leaders, supporters, advocates and parents. This year's conference theme was "One Movement, Many Voices."
In addition to 150+ breakout sessions, 50+ poster sessions and 230+ exhibiting companies, the conference also offered a special programming strand exploring the impact of the 60th anniversary of Brown v. Board of Education. Pre-conference programming as well as tours of several Sacramento charter schools kicked-off the event on Monday, March 16.
United States Senator Dianne Feinstein opened CCSA's 22nd Annual CA Charter Schools Conference.
General Session Emcees Included:
- Marco A Murillo, Charter School Alumni, The Preuss School, UCSD, La Jolla, CA
- Darya Jones, Charter School Alumni, KIPP King Collegiate High School, San Lorenzo, CA
- Raymond Lopez, Charter School Alumni, California Academy for Liberal Studies, Charter Middle School, Los Angeles, CA
- Nicole Rivera, Charter School Alumni, Valley Preparatory Academy Charter School, Fresno, CA
- Jed Wallace, president and CEO, California Charter Schools Association
- Amanda Ripley, investigative journalist and best-selling author
- Juan Williams, FOX News political analyst and best-selling author
Student Performances By:
- KIPP San Francisco College Preparatory, Student Performance
- Sacramento High School Drumline and Dancers
CCSA awarded $2,000 individual college scholarships to five deserving high school graduates at Association member charter schools. The scholarship is named in honor of Susan Steelman Bragato, the co-founder of the first charter school in California and the founder of the California Network of Educational Charters (which was renamed the California Charter Schools Association in 2003).
- Maria Bernal, Leadership Public School Richmond, Richmond, CA
- Jose Chitala, Academia Avance, Los Angeles, CA
- Chelsie Dang, Preuss School UCSD, San Diego, CA
- Anibal Pablo, Oakland Charter High School, Oakland, CA
- Maria Lizeth Ruiz, Paramount Academy, Delano, CA
Hart Vision Awards
The Hart Vision Awards were established in 1995 in honor of Gary K. Hart, retired California State Senator and former California Secretary of Education. While serving as state senator, Hart sponsored the legislation that established California charter schools. The goals of the Hart Vision Awards are to recognize and honor annually individuals who have demonstrated outstanding leadership and excellence in education. Nine awards were announced at the conference.
- Charter School of the Year - Camino Nuevo Charter Academy, Los Angeles
- Charter School of the Year - John Muir Charter School, Sacramento
- Elected Officials of the Year - Kristin Olsen, Assembly Republican Leader (R - Modesto) and Marc Levine, Assemblymember (D - San Rafael)
- School Leader of the Year - Judy Burton, founding president and CEO of Alliance College-Ready Public Schools
- Supporter of the Year - John Fisher, Doris & Donald Fisher Fund
- Teacher of the Year - Genein Letford, NEW Academy Canoga Park, Canoga Park
- Volunteer of the Year - Enrique Esparza and Maritza Leal, Redwood City, CA
One Movement, Many Voices Video Contest
CCSA's first-ever One Movement. Many Voices video contest. winners were also announced at the event. More than 40 informative, creative and inspiring videos were submitted, three contest winners selected, and $23,000 in prizes was awarded to individuals and the charter schools of their choice during the plenary program on Wednesday, March 18.
- Ashley Jennings (1st place winner). Ashley was awarded an individual cash prize of $5,000, and the California Montessori Project Orangevale charter public school received a donation of $10,000 on behalf of Ashley.
- The Classical Academies (2nd place winner). The Classical Academies charter public schools and their students received a total prize of $5,000.
- Diana Gasparyan (3rd place winner). Diana was awarded an individual cash prize of $1,000, and the University High School Fresno charter public school received a $2,000 donation on behalf of Diana.
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