Concept Schools

PUBLIC CHARTER SCHOOL FUNDS UNDER SCRUTINY; November 23, 2010; NBC4i (Columbus, OH) 
"Concept Schools" runs 25 schools in five different states, serving 7,000 students.  In Columbus, the schools are known as Horizon Science Academies.  Horizon's High School is ranked Excellent on its latest state report card.  Horizon Middle School is rated in Continuous Improvement and Horizon Elementary is in Academic Watch.

Two NBC 4 viewers contacted the station, asking us to look into allegations that Ohio taxpayer money was being used to recruit teachers overseas, specifically Turkey. [SEE CHART BELOW]

The Ohio Federation of Teachers showed NBC 4 a lease for a Horizon School in Dayton, whose landlord has a Turkish mailing address.  The President of the Ohio Federation of Teachers wants to know if the rent money is actually going to Turkey.  She also wants to know why Turkish teachers are employed by Horizon.

"At a time of high unemployment in Ohio, when teachers have been laid off, teachers coming out of college can't find jobs. Why would we be importing teachers and administrators from Turkey when Ohioans don't have jobs?" questioned Sue Taylor, President of the Ohio Federation of Teachers…
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PIMA IDA HELPED TURKISH-RUN, OUT-OF-STATE SCHOOLS; September 16, 2010; Arizona Star Sr. Reporter blog (Tucson, AZ)
Some readers noticed a detail in my Sunday story on the Pima County Industrial Development Authority that I didn't bother to delve into. Two of the seven out-of-state bond issues by IDA were for Turkish-run charter school companies, in the mold of the local Sonoran Science Academy [and HERE]. This is the network of schools I've written about, inspired (at the least) by exiled Turkish imam Fethullah Gülen.

The two are Coral Academy of Science in Nevada and Horizon Science Academy and Chicago Math & Science Academy, in Illinois and Ohio. The latter two are part of the Concept Schools group and benefited from the same bond issue.

Coral, which is in Reno, is the closer cousin to the Sonoran Science Academy schools among these schools. Sonoran and Coral are members of the Accord Institute, which is a Turkish-run nonprofit in California that serves as a kind of hub for the West's Gulen schools and provides curriculum and other services to the schools. Also, staff has moved between Coral and the Sonoran schools.

Coral was one of the first out-of-state charter schools to benefit from the expansion of activities by Pima County's Industrial Development Authority. A $7.7 million bond issue for the school, enabled by the IDA, occurred Aug. 27, 2008.

In the other case, the named borrower is a corporation called New Plan Learning, but the specific schools that would benefit from the bond issue are the Horizon Science Academy schools in Ohio, as well as Chicago Math & Science Academy. 

That bond issue has not yet occurred. The IDA's job, for what it's worth, is to act as a conduit that connects a borrower and a lender, allowing the lender to issue tax-exempt bonds. In June the Pima County Board of Supervisors approved up to $90 million in financing for the Horizon and Chicago schools.

Not surprisingly, Sonoran Science Academy has also been a beneficiary of Pima IDA bond issues. But that's been true of many Arizona charter schools since the IDA began financing their projects in about 2001. Sonoran's Phoenix school benefited from $2.1 million in bond financing in January 2006, and the Pima IDA facilitated a $10.6 million bond issue in December that year.
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UNITED SCHOOL OF AL YAHAR WELCOMES STUDENTS IN AL AIN; April 20, 2010; AME Info (United Arab Emerites) 
"After ten years of operations in the USA, Concept Schools International, in joint venture with Bin Ham Group, is now operating the brand new 'United School of Al Yahar' in Al Ain."…

"Dr. Taner F. Ertekin, Chairman of Concept Schools International said, "Concept Schools International is a management company that reshapes the K-12 schools through the use of own unique education design. We follow the model of Concept Schools, a Chicago-based educational management and consulting company, ..."*

*Taner Ertekin is one of the original founders of the Horizon Science Academy charter school chain. His bio on the Concept Schools website states that he "started schools in Thailand and Japan" before becoming active in Ohio.
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Question #1: What is the exact financial relationship between Concept Schools, a corporation which manages 19 publicly-funded charter schools in the Midwest and gets 10% of all their revenue as management fees, and Concept Schools International?

Question #2: Will any money from the 90 million dollar bond issue be going to Concept’s overseas schools?

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A look at Concept Schools, Inc. imported staff members

The Gulen charter schools justify their extremely high use of H1B visas on an insufficiency of U.S. math and science teachers. However, there are two odd things about this explanation.
#1: The schools primarily import teachers from Turkey, with a few from Central Asia, despite the fact that other countries would also have teachers wanting to work in the U.S. who are strong in math and science. This narrow targeting of individuals from these particular areas can be explained by the fact that the Gulen Movement has its strongest presence in Turkey. It also has a presence in Central Asia where Gulen schools were opened immediately after the dissolution of the Soviet Union. 

#2: Staff members are being imported for positions other than math and science teachers. H1B visa petitions have been submitted for business managers, IT personnel, human resources directors, ESL teachers, English teachers, history teachers, character education teachers, and even PE teachers. This is explained by the fact that the schools are run by members of the Gulen Movement who place a priority on importing, and giving U.S. work to, their brethren from abroad.

You can acquaint yourself with the pattern for the Gulen school imports on the page "Importing English Teachers" on the very informative blog called "Gulen Charter Schools."

To enlarge the size of the table for easier viewing, simultaneously press the Ctrl and the + keys until satisfied. Return to your original text size by simultaneously pressing the Ctrl and the - keys.
 
H1B VISAS FOR CONCEPT SCHOOLS*
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008
2009
TOTAL
Concept Schools Nfp
9450 W. Bryn Mawr Avenue Suite #250 Rosemont
0
0
0
1
0
67
9
8
9
94
Concept Schools Inc
9450 Bryn Mawr Avenue, Suite 250 Rosemont
0
0
2
5
31
9
0
1
0
48
Horizon Educational Services Of Columbus Inc
1329 Bethel Road Columbus
0
0
0
0
0
0
14
10
6
30
Horizon Science Academy
1055 Laidlaw Ave. Cincinnati
3
4
2
4
3
3
21
12
13
65
Horizon Science Academy Dayton High Sc
250 Shoup Mill Road Dayton
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
12
12
Horizon Science Academy Springfield
630 South Reynolds Road Toledo
0
0
0
0
0
0
5
5
8
18
Horizon Science Academy Cleveland High School
6000 South Marginal Road
0
0
0
0
0
0
1
13
0
14
Horizon Science Academy Toledo
425 Jefferson Avenue Toledo
0
0
0
2
0
0
6
5
7
20
Horizon Science Academy, Inc
1341 Bethel Road Columbus
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
12
15
27
Horizon Science Academy Of Lorain, Inc
760 Tower Blvd. Lorain
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
6
6
Horizon Science Academy Cleveland Middle School
6100 South Marginal
0
0
0
0
0
0
1
8
3
12
Horizon Science Academy – Cleveland 
6000 S. Marginal Road Cleveland
0
0
0
0
0
1
1
6
2
10
Horizon Educational Services, Inc
6000 South Marginal Road Cleveland
0
2
2
2
2
2
3
1
4
18
Horizon Science Academy Denison Middle School
1700 Denison Avenue
0
0
0
0
0
0
3
2
3
8
Horizon Science Academy-cleveland
6000 S Marginal Road Cleveland
0
0
0
0
0
0
8
0
0
8
Horizon Science Academy – Springfield
630 S. Reynolds Road Toledo
0
0
0
0
0
0
1
2
2
5
Horizon Sci.acad.cleveland Elem.school, Inc
(no address given)
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
2
2
Horizon Science Academy- Columbus
1070 Morse Road Columbus
0
0
0
0
0
5
5
0
1
11
Horizon Science Academy Denison Elementary, Inc
1700 Denison Avenue
0
0
0
0
0
5
5
0
5
15
Noble Academy
1200 E. 200th Street Cleveland
0
0
0
0
0
0
3
7
1
11
Noble Academy Columbus Inc
1345-1347 Bethel Road Columbus
0
0
0
0
0
0
2
1
3
6
Noble Science Academy – Cleveland
1200 E. 200th St. Euclid
0
0
0
0
0
0
1
1
5
7
Noble Academy - Celevalnd, Inc
1200 E 200th ST Cleveland
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
1
0
1
Indiana Math and Science Academy-Indianapolis Inc
4575 W 38th Street Indianapolis
0
0
0
0
0
0
2
4
11
17
Chicago Math. & Science Academy Char. School, Inc
1705 W. Lunt Ave.
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
6
6
Chicago Math. And Sci. Acdmy. Charter Sch
1705 W. Lunt Ave.
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
6
6
Chicago Mathematics & Science Academy
1705 West Lunt Avenue
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
6
1
7
Chicago Math And Science Academy
1705 W. Lunt Avenue**
0
0
0
1
0
0
4
0
6
11
Chicago Mathematics And Science Acdmy. Chartr Sch
1705 W. Lunt Ave.
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
1
1
Wisconsin Career Academy
4801 S. 2nd Street Milwaukee
2
1
5
9
2
2
5
6
5
37
TOTAL
5
7
11
24
38
94
100
111
143
533



GREEN CARDS FOR CONCEPT SCHOOLS*
2001
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008
2009
TOTAL
Concept Schools Nfp
9450 W. Bryn Mawr Avenue Suite #250 Rosemont
0
0
0
0
0
10
0
1
0
11
Concept Schools Inc
9450 Bryn Mawr Avenue, Suite 250 Rosemont
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
Horizon Educational Services Of Columbus Inc
1329 Bethel Road Columbus
0
0
0
0
0
2
0
1
0
3
Horizon Science Academy
1055 Laidlaw Ave. Cincinnati
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
3
0
3
Horizon Science Academy Dayton High Sc
250 Shoup Mill Road Dayton
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
Horizon Science Academy Springfield
630 South Reynolds Road Toledo
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
Horizon Science Academy Cleveland High School
6000 South Marginal Road
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
Horizon Science Academy Toledo
425 Jefferson Avenue Toledo
0
0
0
0
0
1
0
0
0
1
Horizon Science Academy, Inc
1341 Bethel Road Columbus
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
1
0
1
Horizon Science Academy Of Lorain, Inc
760 Tower Blvd. Lorain
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
Horizon Science Academy Cleveland Middle School
6100 South Marginal
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
Horizon Science Academy – Cleveland 
6000 S. Marginal Road Cleveland
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
Horizon Educational Services, Inc
6000 South Marginal Road Cleveland
4
0
3
0
0
0
0
0
0
7
Horizon Science Academy Denison Middle School
1700 Denison Avenue
0
0
0
0
0
1
0
2
0
3
Horizon Science Academy-cleveland
6000 S Marginal Road Cleveland
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
Horizon Science Academy – Springfield
630 S. Reynolds Road Toledo
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
Horizon Sci.acad.cleveland Elem.school, Inc
(no address given)
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
Horizon Science Academy- Columbus
1070 Morse Road Columbus
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
Horizon Science Academy Denison Elementary, Inc
1700 Denison Avenue
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
Noble Academy
1200 E. 200th Street Cleveland
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
Noble Academy Columbus Inc
1345-1347 Bethel Road Columbus
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
Noble Science Academy – Cleveland
1200 E. 200th St. Euclid
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
Noble Academy - Celevalnd, Inc
1200 E 200th ST Cleveland
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
Indiana Math and Science Academy-Indianapolis Inc
4575 W 38th Street Indianapolis
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
Chicago Math. & Science Academy Char. School, Inc
1705 W. Lunt Ave.
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
Chicago Math. And Sci. Acdmy. Charter Sch
1705 W. Lunt Ave.
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
Chicago Mathematics & Science Academy
1705 West Lunt Avenue
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
Chicago Math And Science Academy
1705 W. Lunt Avenue**
0
0
0
0
0
0
1
2
0
3
Chicago Mathematics And Science Acdmy. Chartr Sch
1705 W. Lunt Ave.
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
Wisconsin Career Academy
4801 S. 2nd Street Milwaukee
0
0
4
0
0
0
0
1
0
5
TOTAL
4
0
7
0
0
4
1
10
0
26


SEE THIS POWERPOINT PRESENTATION: Concept Schools - Success in Education or Success in Marketing.

* Concept Schools, Inc. manages Ohio's Horizon Science Academy and Noble Science Academy schools, the Chicago Math and Science Academy in Illinois, Indiana Math and Science Academy schools (two in Indianapolis), Michigan Math and Science Academy (Hazel Park), and the Wisconsin Career Academy (Milwaukee). 

** Searching for Michigan Math and Science Academy by employer @ http://www.myvisajobs.com/H1B_Visa.aspx yielded NO results. Searching by location (Hazel Park, MI) yeilded “Chicago Math And Science Academy” with these numbers.

3 comments:

Robert Colleran said...

I would like to know more about the $90 million bond issue. Where is this money coming from and where is it going ?

Rosemary McGuckin said...

Perhaps there needs to be some senate investigations of these troubling practices

Jmenns11 said...

Looking for any teachers from concept schools who have been treated poorly. We just had 4goodyear teachers let go who challenged what the school was doing. Something needs to be done.