115C-75.8. Selection of IS operators.

(a) The State Board of Education may select an IS operator for a prospective innovative school by January 15 and shall select an IS operator for a prospective school no later than February 15.

(b) Upon the recommendation of the ISD Superintendent, the State Board of Education shall only select an entity to contract as an IS operator if that entity demonstrates one of the following:

(1) The entity has a record of results in improving performance of persistently low-performing schools or improving performance of a substantial number of persistently low-performing students within a school or schools operated by the entity in this State or other states.

(2) The entity has a credible and specific plan for dramatically improving student achievement in a low-performing school and provides evidence that the entity, or a contractual affiliate of such an entity, is either currently operating a school or schools in this State that provide students a sound, basic education or demonstrating consistent and substantial growth toward providing students a sound, basic education in the prior three school years.

(b1) In the event that no entity demonstrates the qualifications required by subsection (b) of this section, the ISD is authorized to act as an IS operator for one academic year and the State Board shall select an entity in accordance with subsection (b) of this section to assume management beginning with the next academic year. If the State Board has not been able to select an entity demonstrating the required qualifications by the third year of management of the school by the ISD, the ISD shall remain the operator of the school until the end of the fifth year and shall develop a transition plan to return the school to the local school administrative unit.

(c) The selected IS operator is encouraged to hold public informational sessions and other outreach to the community, prospective innovative school, and local board of education of a prospective innovative school prior to a local board's adoption of the resolution required by G.S. 115C-75.7(c).

(d) The contract between the State Board of Education and IS operator shall require, as a minimum, that the IS operator meet the same requirements as established for charter schools in the following statutes:

(1) G.S. 115C-218.20 (Civil liability and insurance requirements).

(2) G.S. 115C-218.25 (Open meetings and public records).

(3) G.S. 115C-218.30 (Accountability; reporting requirements to State Board of Education).

(4) G.S. 115C-218.50 (Charter school nonsectarian).

(5) G.S. 115C-218.55 (Nondiscrimination in charter schools).

(6) G.S. 115C-218.60 (Student discipline).

(7) G.S. 115C-218.65 (North Carolina School Report Cards).

(8) G.S. 115C-218.75 (General operating requirements).

(9) G.S. 115C-218.85 (Course of study requirements). (2016-110, s. 1; 2017-57, ss. 7.26E(a), (f); 2018-5, s. 7.20(c).)