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Catawba College's Phil Kirk Serving on Blue Ribbon Charter School Commission

June 23, 2007

Category: Alumni, Staff, Teacher Education

Phillip J. Kirk, Jr.Catawba College's Vice President for External Relations and Chairman Emeritus of the State Board of Education Phillip Kirk is a member of a new Blue Ribbon Charter School Commission convened by the State Board of Education.

The Commission is charged to look at the types of charter schools that have been successful, possible guidelines for approval of future charter schools, and whether the cap on charter schools should be raised. The Commission held its first meeting June 21 in Raleigh.

Charter schools are privately-run, publicly-funded schools that are allowed greater independence in their teaching methods. In 1996, the N.C. Charter Schools Act authorized the creation of a system of no more than 100 such schools in the state, all subject to the same testing and accountability standards as public schools.

Kirk, a 1967 Catawba alumnus, joined the College's administrative team in July 2006. During his career, he as served as an elected official, state government administrator, a lobbyist and an influential voice in public policy. He has worked tirelessly to ensure that high-quality education remains a priority in North Carolina, consistently emphasizing public education and other programs for children. He serves on numerous boards including the Public School Forum of North Carolina, the N.C. Center for the Advancement of Teaching Foundation, and the University of North Carolina Tomorrow Commission. He also has received several statewide "Friends of Education" awards from the Professional Educators of North Carolina, the I.E. Ready Award, the top award given by the North Carolina Community College System, and the Public School Forum of N.C.'s 2007 Jay Robinson Leadership Award.