Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Why Achievement First Mayoral Academies Doesn't Have Proposed Bylaws

AFMA proposal:

The by-laws for the Achievement First Mayoral Academies are in formation and being reviewed by legal counsel. Upon completion of a final draft, the by-laws will be forwarded to the Rhode Island Department of Education. In Exhibit 6, please find a copy of the Board by-laws for Elm City College Preparatory, which oversees three of the nine schools managed by Achievement First in the State of Connecticut. These by-laws will be adapted for Achievement First Mayoral Academies in Rhode Island. The most notable difference between Elm City Board by-laws and the ones in formation for AF Mayoral Academies is the statutory requirement that the board of mayoral academies be chaired by a mayor of one of the enrolling towns. Other differences may include, but are not limited to, the number of annual meetings and the total number of Board of Directors.

Let's be clear here: Rhode Island Mayoral Academies (RIMA) is the charter holder in this relationship. Mayor Fung has no power (One vote as long as he's on the RIMA board, one vote on the AFMA board? Who knows because we don't have the bylaws?). Achievement First is a contractor.

RIMA has a set of by-laws for a Rhode Island mayoral academy that has passed muster with their lawyers and the state -- the by-laws of the Democracy Prep Mayoral Academy. They are ultimately accountable for oversight of AFMA insofar as they appoint the schools' board outside of its chair.

So clearly what's going on here is that the contractor is being allowed to write the by-laws of the board that will directly oversee them board by the non-profit that's supposed to be monitoring the whole thing.

And they couldn't get that done on time, so there are no valid by-laws in the application. Despite the fact that the applicant to hold the charter has their own set of valid by-laws in hand. And that's ok with RIDE.

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