Infinity Charter School

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Infinity Charter School
Address
5405 Locust Lane
Lower Paxton, Pennsylvania, Dauphin County, Pennsylvania 17109
United States
Information
Type Public
Founded initially approved 2003, charter renewed twice
Founder Nancy J. Hall
School board internally selected Charter Board members
Oversight Central Dauphin School District, Pennsylvania Department of Education
President Suzanne Gausman
Administrator Shelly Fredericks, Business Manager
Faculty 8 teachers (2011)[1]
Grades K-8 (2013)
Age range 5 years old - 14 years old
Pupils

209 pupils (2015)[2]
124 Pupils (2014)[3]
121 pupils (October 2013)[4]
121 pupils (2012-2013)[5]

118 pupils (2011-12)[6]
 • Kindergarten 11 (2012), 11 (2010)
 • Grade 1 9 (2012), 9 (2010)
 • Grade 2 13 (2012), 15( 2010)
 • Grade 3 16 (2012), 20 (2010)
 • Grade 4 19 (2012), 16 (2010)
 • Grade 5 18 (2012), 13 (2010)
 • Grade 6 14 (2012), 12 (2010)
 • Grade 7 12 (2012), 11 (2010)
 • Grade 8 9 (2012), 11 (2010)
Language English
Tuition set by PDE based on student's home district
Communities served region of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Student Waiting List none (2012)[7]
Website
Public School Districts region in Dauphin County

Infinity Charter School is a small, urban, public charter school.[8] The school is located in Lower Paxton, Dauphin County, Pennsylvania. It is one of five public charter schools operating in Dauphin County, Pennsylvania.[9] In 2015, enrollment grew to 148 pupils full day kindergarten through eighth grade, with 15.5% of pupils eligible for a federal free or reduced price lunch due to the family meeting the federal poverty level.[10] According to a report by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, 100% of the school's teachers were rated "Highly Qualified" under the federal No Child Left Behind Act.[11]

In 2014, enrollment was 124 pupils in grades kindergarten through 8th, with 9% of pupils eligible for a federal free or reduced price lunch due to the family meeting the federal poverty level.[12]

In 2013, enrollment was 121 pupils in grades kindergarten through 8th, with 12% of pupils eligible for a federal free or reduced price lunch due to the family meeting the federal poverty level.[13] In 2010, the school employed 8 teachers yielding a student-teacher ratio of 14:1.[14] Additionally, 4% of the pupils receive special education services and no pupils were identified as gifted. According to a report by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, 100% of the school's teachers were rated "Highly Qualified" under the federal No Child Left Behind Act.[15] In 2012, Infinity Charter School served 121 students throughout the year.[16] Infinity Charter School has been recognized as exempt from federal income taxes under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.

Charter Approval The Central Dauphin School District School Board renewed the charter school's agreement for another five years in 2012, and again in 2015. The Infinity Charter School was originally approved for 4 years in 2003, by the State Charter School Appeal Board, after the Central Dauphin School Board denied the charter approval.[17]

In Pennsylvania, charter schools are initially approved and subsequently overseen by the local school board (Central Dauphin School District) and the Pennsylvania Department of Education.[18] Charter Schools are mandated to make annual, in depth reports to the Pennsylvania Department of Education. In Pennsylvania, charter schools are a public school alternative the local public schools. Students may seek admission to a local charter school. The student's home public school district pays the tuition costs on the student's behalf. Additionally, when the local school district provides transportation to its students it must also provide transportation at no costs to charter school students when the receiving school is within 10 miles of the District's borders.[19] Pennsylvania charter schools have the same academic accountability as traditional public schools and must give the PSSAs to their pupils each year, working to achieve AYP status.[20]

Admission Students apply to attend the school. Infinity Charter School employs no screening devices in the enrollment of its students, and it must accept any student, regardless of the student's intellectual ability or mental aptitude․ According to PA Charter School law, if more students apply to attend than there are open slots available, charter schools are required to use a random lottery system to select new incoming students.[21] According to the Charter School law, siblings (brothers and sisters), and children of individuals who help establish a charter school, are granted an “admissions preference.” Students residing in the Central Dauphin School District are given priority according to the number of slots available for students. If there is space available for more students, seats are declared open for out-of-District students.[22][23] Infinity Charter School receives students from multiple local school districts.

The Capital Area Intermediate Unit IU15 provides the school with a wide variety of services like specialized education for disabled students and hearing, speech and visual disability services and professional development for staff and faculty.[1]

Award In 2012, the U.S. Department of Education named National Blue Ribbon School.[24]

Ranking Local School Directory.com ranked Infinity Charter School 16th, for academic achievement, among 1895 public elementary schools operating in Pennsylvania, in 2010.[25]

2015 School Performance Profile[edit]

The Pennsylvania Department of Education reported that 92% of 8th grade students at Infinity Charter School students were on grade level in reading on the PSSAs given in April 2015. In math/Algebra 1, 54% of 8th grade students showed on grade level skills. In science, 93% of the school’s 8th graders demonstrated on grade level science understanding. No eighth grade writing scores were reported. In 7th grade, 100% were on grade level in reading, while 67% showed on grade level math skills. Among 6th graders, 93% were on grade level in reading and 87% were on grade level in mathematics. In 5th grade reading, 100% of 5th grade students at Infinity were on grade level in reading on the PSSAs given in April 2015. In mathematics, 61% of 5th grade students showed on grade level skills. No fifth grade writing scores were reported. In 4th grade, 100% were on grade level in reading, while 73% showed on grade level math skills. In science, 100% of fourth graders showed on grade level understanding. Third (3rd) graders were not reported due to low enrollment.[26]

Statewide 58% of eighth (8th) graders were on grade level in reading, while 29% demonstrated on grade level math skills. Pennsylvania 7th graders were58% on grade level in reading and 33% demonstrated on grade level math skills. Among sixth (6th) graders, 60.7% were reading on grade level, while 39.7% demonstrated on grade level math skills. Among Pennsylvania fifth graders, 61.9% of fifth (5th) graders were on grade level in reading, while 42.8% demonstrated on grade level math skills. Pennsylvania 4th graders were 58.6% on grade level in reading and 44.4% demonstrated on grade level math skills. In science, 77.3% of fourth graders showed on grade level understanding. Among Pennsylvania third (3rd) graders, 62% were reading on grade level, while 48.5% demonstrated on grade level math skills.[27]

2014 School Performance Profile[edit]

Infinity Charter School achieved a score of 96.7 out of 100. The score reflects on grade level: reading, science, writing and mathematics achievement. In 2013-14, only 98.8% of the students were reading on grade level in grades 3rd through 5th. In 3rd grade, 100% of the pupils were reading on grade level. In math, 100% were on grade level (3rd-5th grades). In 4th grade science, 100% of the pupils demonstrated on grade level understanding. In writing 100% of 5th grade pupils demonstrated on grade level skills.[28]

2013 School Performance Profile[edit]

Infinity Charter School achieved 89.9 out of 100. Reflects on grade level reading, mathematics, writing and science achievement on the state PSSAs and Keystone Exams. In reading/literature - 97% were on grade level. The third grade had 100% reading on grade level. In Algebra 1/mathematics - 96% showed on grade level mathematics skills. In Science, 100% of 4th graders showed on grade level science understanding. In 5th and 8th grade writing, 77.7% of pupils showed on grade level writing skills.[29] According to the Pennsylvania Department of Education, 2,181 public schools (less than 73 percent of Pennsylvania public schools), achieved an academic score of 70 or higher. Pennsylvania 8th grade students, who take Algebra i, no longer take the PSSAs. Instead, they now take the Keystone Exams at the end of the course.[30] Charter School students' achievement exceeded the local traditional public schools in the Central Dauphin School District.

AYP History[edit]

In 2012, Infinity Charter School achieved Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) status under the federal No Child Left Behind Act.[31] Infinity Charter School achieved AYP status each school year from 2004 through 2011.[32]

PSSA results[edit]

Each year, charter school students are required to take the Keystone Exams and PSSAs just like their peers in traditional public schools. Third grade, sixth grade and seventh graders are tested in reading and mathematics since 2006. Foutrth grader are tested in reading, math and science. Fifth graders are tested in reading, math and writing. Eighth graders are tested in: reading, writing, mathematics and Science. Beginning in the Spring of 2013, eighth graders, who are enrolled in Algebra I take the Keystone Exam for Algebra I at the end of the course. The testing of 8th grade in reading and mathematics began in 1999. Testing in science began in 2007. The federally mandated goal was for 100% of students to be on grade level or better in reading and mathematics, by the Spring of 2014. The tests focus on the state's Academic Standards for reading, writing, mathematics and science. The standards were first published in 1998 and are mandated by the Pennsylvania State Board of Education.[33] The state withholds data on a class when there are 10 or fewer students in the results.

8th Grade Science:

  • 2012 - 100% on grade level, 73% advanced. State - 59%
  • 2011 - 100%, 82% advanced. State – 58.3%
  • 2010 - 100%, 90% advanced. State – 57%[40]
4th Grade Science
  • 2012 - 100%, 94% advanced. State - 82%
  • 2011 - not reported due to a small number of pupils participating
  • 2010 - not reported due to 8 pupils participating

Tuition[edit]

Students who live in the local public school district's attendance area may choose to attend one of Pennsylvania's 157 public charter schools. A student living in a neighboring public school district or a foreign exchange student may seek admission to a public School District. For these cases, the Pennsylvania Department of Education sets an annual tuition rate for each school district. It is the amount the public school district pays to a charter school for each resident student that attends the charter and it is the amount a nonresident student's parents must pay to attend the Central Dauphin School District's schools. The 2012 tuition rates for Central Dauphin School District are Elementary Schools $9,179.86.[43] For students who reside in other local school districts, their home school district pays its mandated tuition rate to the charter school. Harrisburg School District paid $10,193.86 for elementary students and Steelton-Highspire School District paid - $9,908.11.

Wellness and food service[edit]

Infinity Charter School was not required to establish a school wellness policy, because it does not participate in the federal school lunch program. The school does not serve hot school lunches. Students are expected to bring their own lunch. No breakfast is provided.[44] The school employs a part-time nurse who conducts the annual health screenings (data reported to the PDE and state Department of Health) and to monitor prescribed medications to students during the school day. Students can be excluded from school unless they comply with all the State Department of Health’s extensive immunization mandates. School nurses monitor each pupil for this compliance.[45] Nurses also monitor each child's weight.

The School participated in Highmark Foundation’s Healthy High 5 Health eTools for Schools grant which enabled mobile data collection of pertinent health and physical fitness screening data on students K-12 in a database held by InnerLink, Inc. in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.[46] Health eTools for Schools also provided interdisciplinary research-based curriculum in nutrition, physical education and physical activity to participating districts. The program was discontinued in 2013.[47]

School safety and bullying[edit]

The Infinity Charter School administration reported there were zero incidents of bullying in the School in 2012. Additionally, there were no sexual incidents involving students. The local law enforcement was involved in zero incidents at the school.[48] [49] Each year the school safety data is reported by the School to the Safe School Center, which then publishes the compiled reports online. Nationally, nearly 20% of pupils report being bullied at school.[50]

The Infinity Charter School Board of Trustees has provided the School's antibully policy online.[51] All Pennsylvania schools are required to have an anti-bullying policy incorporated into their Code of Student Conduct. The policy must identify disciplinary actions for bullying and designate a school staff person to receive complaints of bullying. The policy must be available on the school's website and posted in every classroom. All Pennsylvania public schools must provide a copy of its anti-bullying policy to the Office for Safe Schools every year, and shall review their policy every three years. Additionally, the School must conduct an annual review of that policy with students.[52] The Center for Schools and Communities works in partnership with the Pennsylvania Commission on Crime & Delinquency and the Pennsylvania Department of Education to assist schools and communities as they research, select and implement bullying prevention programs and initiatives.[53][54]

Education standards relating to student safety and anti harassment programs are described in the 10.3. Safety and Injury Prevention in the Pennsylvania Academic Standards for Health, Safety and Physical Education.[55]

Audit[edit]

As with all Local Education Agencies in Pennsylvania, Infinity Charter School is audited by the Pennsylvania Auditor General on a cyclic basis. In July 2011, the school was audited covering the period July 1, 2006 through October 1, 2010. Findings were reported to the administrator and Board of Trustees.[56] The Board of Trustees has a third party accountant conduct an annual financial audit of transactions and accounts.[57]

Extracurriculars[edit]

Infinity Charter School does not offer athletic extracurriculars. By Pennsylvania law, all K-12 students residing in a public school district, including those who attend a private nonpublic school, a cyber charter school, a charter school and those homeschooled, are eligible to participate in the extracurricular programs including all athletics. They must meet the same eligibility rules as the students enrolled in the local school district's schools.[58]

References[edit]

  1. ^ National Center for Education Statistics, Common Core of Data - Infinity Charter School, 2012
  2. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (December 4, 2015). "Infinity Charter School Performance report fast facts 2014". 
  3. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (November 6, 2014). "Infinity Charter School Performance report fast facts 2014". 
  4. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education, Infinity Charter School Performance report fast facts 2013, December 5, 2013
  5. ^ PDE, Enrollment by LEA and School, 2012
  6. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education, Enrollment and Projections by LEA, October 2011
  7. ^ PDE, Charter School Report Summary Data, 2012
  8. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2013). "EdNA - Infinity Charter School". 
  9. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education, PA ED DIrectory - Charter Schools, 2013
  10. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education, School Performance Profile - Infinity Charter School, 2015
  11. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education, Professional Qualifications of Teachers Infinity Charter School 2015, 2015
  12. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education, School Performance Profile - Infinity Charter School, 2013
  13. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education, School Performance Profile - Infinity Charter School, 2013
  14. ^ National Center for Education Statistics, Common Core Data - Infinity Charter School, 2010
  15. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education, Professional Qualifications of Teachers Infinity Charter School 2012, September 21, 2012
  16. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education, Charter School Annual Report 2012, 2012
  17. ^ Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania (April 15, 2004). "CENTRAL DAUPHIN SCHOOL DISTRICT, Petitioner v. FOUNDING COALITION of the INFINITY CHARTER SCHOOL, Respondent". 
  18. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2014). "Charter Schools". 
  19. ^ Pennsylvania General Assembly (October 1, 2004). "24 P.S. §17-1701-A Charter Schools - Transportation". 
  20. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2014). "Charter School Regulations". 
  21. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2014). "Summary of Charter School Legislation". 
  22. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education, Charter School Annual Report 2013, 2013
  23. ^ Infinity Charter School Administration (2014). "Infinity Charter School FAQ". 
  24. ^ US Department of Education (2012). "2012 National Blue Ribbon Schools Elementary School list". 
  25. ^ LocalSchoolDirectory.com (2010). "2010 School Rankings - Pennsylvania Elementary Schools". 
  26. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (October 1, 2015). "2015 PSSA School Level Data". 
  27. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (October 1, 2015). "2015 PSSA State Level Data". 
  28. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (November 6, 2014). "Infinity Charter School Academic Performance Data 2014". 
  29. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (October 4, 2013). "Infinity Charter School Academic Performance Data 2013". 
  30. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2014). "PENNSYLVANIA SCHOOL PERFORMANCE PROFILE Frequently Asked Questions". 
  31. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (September 21, 2012). "Infinity Charter School AYP Overview 2012". 
  32. ^ PDE, AYP History 2003-2012 By School, 2013
  33. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2014). "State Academic Standards". 
  34. ^ Pittsburgh Post Gazette (October 15, 2012). "How is your school doing?". 
  35. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education, Infinity Charter School Academic Achievement Report 2011, September 21, 2011
  36. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education, Infinity Charter School Academic Achievement Report 2010, September 29, 2010
  37. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (September 21, 2012). "Infinity Charter School Academic Achievement Report Card 2012" (PDF). 
  38. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education, Charter School Academic Achievement Report 2011, September 29, 2011
  39. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education Report (September 14, 2010). "2010 PSSAs: Reading, Math, Writing Results". 
  40. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education Report (August 2010). "Science PSSA 2010 by Schools". 
  41. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education, Charter School Academic Achievement Report 2010, October 20, 2010
  42. ^ Pittsburgh Post Gazette (October 15, 2012). "How is your school doing?". 
  43. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (May 2012). "Pennsylvania Public School District Tuition Rates". 
  44. ^ Infinity Charter School Administration (2013). "Parent Handbook 2013-2014" (PDF). 
  45. ^ Pennsylvania State Department of Health (2010). "Pennsylvania Bulletin Doc. No. 10-984 School Immunizations; Communicable and Noncommunicable Diseases". 
  46. ^ Kristin Ioannou, Highmark. Inc. (2007). "Highmark Healthy High 5 Health eTools for Schools Available Free Through 2009". 
  47. ^ Cathy Hoffman, Interlink (September 2, 2008). "Highmark Foundation Extends Subsidy for Health eTools for Schools through 2013" (PDF). 
  48. ^ Center for Safe Schools (2013). "Infinity Charter School Safety Report 2013" (PDF). 
  49. ^ Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Safe School Center (2012). "Pennsylvania Safe Schools Online Reports". 
  50. ^ Safe & Responsive Schools Project (June 20, 2011). "Area high school students create anti-bullying mural". Williamsport Sun Gazette. 
  51. ^ Infinity Charter School BOT, Bullying Policy 326, December 14, 2008
  52. ^ Pennsylvania General Assembly (2006). "Regular Session 2007–2008 House Bill 1067, Act 61 Section 6 page 8". 
  53. ^ Center for Safe Schools of Pennsylvania (2006). "Bullying Prevention advisory". 
  54. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2012). "Bullying, Hazing, and Harassment Resources". Archived from the original on 2011-11-21. 
  55. ^ Pennsylvania State Board of Education (January 11, 2003). "Pennsylvania Academic Standards Health, Safety and Physical Education". 
  56. ^ Pennsylvania Auditor General (July 2011). "INFINITY CHARTER SCHOOL DAUPHIN COUNTY, PENNSYLVANIA PERFORMANCE AUDIT REPORT" (PDF). 
  57. ^ Infinity Charter School Administration, Infinity Charter School Annual Report, June 30, 2013
  58. ^ Pennsylvania Office of the Governor Press Release (November 10, 2005). "Home-Schooled, Charter School Children Can Participate in School District Extracurricular Activities". 

Coordinates: 40°16′38″N 76°50′56″W / 40.27722°N 76.84902°W / 40.27722; -76.84902