TRANSFORMATION SCHOOLS

Dallas ISD has several vacant school buildings that, with some renovations, could become schools again, as well as new building projects on the horizon over the coming years. Additionally, there is non-traditional space throughout the district that could be utilized as well (e.g., additional space at a local community college). In these vacant/new school buildings and other non-traditional spaces, Transformation Schools will find a home. Transformation Schools will be new, start-up, open enrollment schools. No Transformation School will be able to institute academic entry requirements – in other words, they will remain open to all students regardless of their academic abilities.

Five Transformation Schools have already been identified through the Public School Choice proposal process to date (IDEA; Hulcy STEAM; Solar Prep; Mata Montessori; CityLab HS-proposed name). Moving forward, the district’s goal is to have an equitable distribution of Transformation Schools across the district. All Transformation Schools will be fully open enrollment for students across the entire district and transportation will be provided for families within certain parameters. Transformation Schools should seek to offer instructional approaches, content, and themes that are attractive to Dallas ISD families of all backgrounds, which could lead to more economically diverse student bodies in these schools.

Three types of Applicant Teams would be eligible to apply to become a Transformation School:

  • An Applicant Team made up of existing Dallas ISD employees with at least three individuals (including the Lead Applicant) who plan to hold full-time positions at the campus
     
  • An Applicant Team made up of a mix of district employees and out of district educators/partners[1] who are looking to launch a Choice School with at least three individuals (including the Lead Applicant) who plan to hold full-time positions at the campus
     
  • An Applicant Team made up of only out-of-district educators/partners who are looking to design and launch a Transformation School in Dallas ISD with at least three individuals (including the Lead Applicant) who plan to hold full time positions at the campus

Unlike prior years, the Public School Choice 3.0. competitive proposal process does not require an Applicant Team to have a proposed principal as part of their team in order to be eligible to submit a proposal. For example, a successful Applicant Team for a Transformation School could potentially only include a team of teachers who will use the planning year (under district guidelines) to search for/select their founding principal.

Because Transformation Schools will be entirely new from the ground up, there will not be any existing staff. As such, the leadership teams of Transformation Schools will be able to hire and select their own staff under district guidelines.

The District will be responsible for securing a suitable facility for successful Transformation School applicants. Applicant Teams should remain focused on the academic vision and instructional plan, rather than the future location or facility.

Note on External Partners: If a group of community members, parents, or non-profit organizations (i.e., museums, universities, teacher development organizations, etc.) have an idea for a Dallas ISD Transformation School and wish to engage in the competitive process, they will need to find an Applicant Team to partner with and sponsor their ideas throughout the proposal process.  The Applicant Team must meet all of the eligibility criteria for Public School Choice 2.0 outlined in this application.  These groups can also reach out to the Office of Transformation and Innovation for guidance about how to proceed with their ideas.

[1] Out-of-district Educators: Professionals who are formally certified (possess valid licenses/certifications) to teach and/or lead within a public K-12 school setting and/or individuals who represent an organization with a track record of verifiable success developing, supporting, and/or managing K-12 public schools. It is expected that educators who plan to move from another state to launch a Choice School in Dallas ISD meet all Texas Education Agency certification requirements prior to official school launch.