Message from the Executive Director
Douglas P. Thaman, Ed.D.
October 10, 2012
Greetings! Thank you for being a member of the Missouri Charter Public School Association (MCPSA). Due to the support of your school and others, MCPSA is able to provide a wide range of services to Missouri’s charter school community. Our goal is to always provide outcomes and programming you and our membership value.
Our theme for our 2012 annual Missouri Charter School’s Conference was “Stepping Up To The Plate”. That is what YOU do each and every day through your commitment of time, energy, and talent providing a high quality education for Missouri’s children. Whether you are a school leader ensuring each day runs smoothly; a classroom teacher ensuring each day is full of opportunity for children; a board member ensuring the school maintains a focus on teaching and learning; a sponsor providing oversight and support; or a community leader helping ensure parameters are in place for quality education, you ’step up to the plate’ with an eye on the ball and intention to hit it out of the park!
This past year has been one of growth and change for the Missouri charter school sector! We celebrated the opening of two new charter schools in Kansas City and the expansion of several charter schools in St. Louis. We were disappointed but understood the reasons behind the closures of seven charter schools between the two cities. This brought out the best in so many people working to ensure that the children had quality schools to attend this year. The Association led the charge for passage of Senate Bill 576 which introduced changes in the ways schools and sponsors are held accountable and, for the first time, expanded where charter schools may locate to districts outside of Kansas City and St. Louis.
As the State Association, we are 100% committed to providing each of you and your schools quality service and support. It has been a great year of growth including raising funds to expand our efforts as well as develop and implement a leadership development program for school leaders and governing boards. We also established our School Leader Network, Board President Network, and have begun the planning for a Teacher Network bringing opportunities for collaboration amongst peers. Finally, we have made significant attempts to sharpen the focus of the Association toward increasing communication to our member schools and stakeholders, finding ways to ensure member schools have opportunities for meaningful input, and providing quality service and advocacy.
We hope that each of you has felt the impact of our growth and efforts in positive ways. As the State’s membership organization, your input is critical. We want to hear from you whether it is through sharing an idea, expressing a concern, or seeking information. The whole idea behind MCPSA is to provide service, support, and advocacy to you and on behalf of you, our members. Without you, the Association would have no purpose or meaning. Please always feel free to reach out!
On a personal note, my first year with the Association has been a tremendous professional experience. I have sincerely enjoyed meeting and working with each of you. I look forward to our ongoing opportunities working together to ensure Missouri’s families have a choice when it comes to which public school will provide their children the innovative, quality education they deserve.
With Great Regard,
Douglas P. Thaman, Ed.D.
Executive Director, MCPSA