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Applying the Characteristics of Highly Effective Schools

This module engages participants in answering the question: “Why are some charter schools more effective and successful than others?” Participants will learn about 18 essential characteristics that the most effective, successful charter schools share.


More importantly, participants will learn strategies for using these essential characteristics to benchmark their own charter school against the 18 characteristics and create plans for the strategies they might use to raise the level of effectiveness in their own schools. Attendees may be active in charter schools or planning to start one.


Key Points

  • Charter schools are fully successful when three components are supported and addressed: the educational program, the institutional character, and the culture of the school.

  • The characteristics of a single successful aspect of a school overlap with or rely on other successful aspects’”either within that component or in another component.

  • Participants will have the opportunity to create a guideline that will help their school become more effective in a range of ways and thereby become more successful overall.

  • Through deliberate planning and by following patterns or protocols from others who have successfully initiated change, participants will be able to instigate improvement in the eighteen characteristics that can markedly improve their schools.




1 day (call for information on half-day sessions)




Joe J. D’Amico, Dr. Christine Mason


Joe D’Amico’s consulting network specializes in services for charter school educators, including applications and federal grants. D’Amico has served as Executive Director of Education Quality for Educate, Inc., and for the George B. Thomas, Sr. Learning Academy, a non-profit student tutoring organization in Maryland. He has held positions with several other groups focused on educational research, technology, and service. He has taken lead roles in training and in development for both private and public schools. He received his education at the University of Pennsylvania and at Brandeis University.

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