TAKE ACTION

If you oppose a new Uplift Charter School in the DISD boundary:

 

1. Please send an email to both your Dallas City Council Member and City Plan Commissioner by February 1, 2021 (sample message below).

2. If you live in Council Member Adam Bazaldua’s City Council District 7, where the proposed Uplift new build is planned please contact his appointed Plan Commissioner Timothy Jackson NOW at: d7plan@gmail.com and plan to attend his pre-hearing Zoom on February 15, 2021.

3. Please plan to register to speak at the City Plan Commission Hearing on February 18, 2021.

4. Finally please share this information with your contacts and on social media to help inform other parents and community members.

 

If the SUP passes the City Plan Commission hearing, it will go to the Dallas City Council for a vote on April 14, 2021.

Copy/paste all or parts of the following text and send to your City Council Member and City Plan Commissioner or feel free to write your own:

Critical concerns about Uplift Charter Schools in Dallas ISD: 

1. There is no elected school board to oversee taxpayer funding - this means no elected trustee to oversee  your tax dollars and no ability to vote out the trustee if you do not agree with how they are managing the  school. Charter schools in Texas are private organizations but operate with taxpayer money. As a private organization  they are governed by self-selected boards of directors that are not accountable to local taxpayers or voters, unlike  public school districts that are governed by democratically elected boards of trustees.   

2. The money transferred from Dallas ISD taxpayers to Uplift  is financially devastating and unsustainable.  Since 2011/12, Uplift Education has reduced Dallas ISD’s revenues by over $450 million, without the approval of any  DISD taxpayer. Using a conservative per pupil funding amount of $8,000, Uplift Luna alone drains just under $12  million in revenue annually from DISD.  

• Since Uplift relies on under-enrolling students with demographics representative of the community the result  is a significant fiscal impact on DISD of draining resources, leaving the most costly students to teach while  simultaneously necessitating cuts in academics, programs, and staff in DISD. 

3. The new Uplift campus will pull students from DISD and disrupt education for students. Uplift states this new  build is a relocation of its Downtown Luna (pre-K - 5) and Deep Ellum Luna (gr 6-12) campuses, indicating the Luna  students will travel 9.6 miles in rush-hour traffic to the new location. If the Luna students do not, the DISD campuses  in the area will suffer significant destabilization as Uplift draws from these schools. 

Important to know: 

- Opening, closing, and relocating campuses by charter schools at their whim is directly opposed to the central tenet of  stability in education, especially for the disadvantaged. 

4. The Uplift student outcomes are not better than Dallas ISD and when comparing “apples to apples” are  often worse. This proposed new charter campus is located in close proximity to academically acceptable Dallas ISD  schools, with a plethora of educational offerings from early  elementary through high school. There are nine DISD  schools within 8 minutes of the new Uplift campus, all rated B or C except one. In short there is no need for this  campus.

5. Uplift practices discriminatory admissions and enrollment policies resulting in segregated communities  and the exclusion of certain student populations. Uplift does not serve students at levels representative of  students in the Dallas ISD area. Instead Uplift markets to and enrolls students deemed most likely to succeed thereby  undermining the neighborhood DISD campuses. 

Important to know: 

- Charter schools do not serve all students. State law allows charters to exclude any student from enrollment who has  any discipline history – even for minor offenses, such as being sent to the principal’s office*.

6. Uplift practices yield concerns about educational inequity for students, such as larger class sizes, less  teacher pay, higher teacher turnover, and spending more on administration and less in the classroom.

Help support public education in Dallas.

Sources:   

TEA Summary of Finance 

TEA TAPR 2019-20 

TEA Snapshot 2018-19 

TEA list of 2020 charter amendments 

* Texas Education Code 12.111 (a)(5)(A) available at: https://statutes.capitol.texas.gov/Docs/ED/htm/ED.12.htm

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