Sherman Thomas Charter School
Sherman Thomas STEM Academy
Sherman Thomas Charter High School
9th - 12th Grade
Welcome to Sherman Thomas Charter Schools! In 2000, an administrator from Madera Unified School District (MUSD), concerned by the over crowding in their public schools, asked me to look into the charter school movement as an opportunity to start something new within our facility grounds. I asked, “What are charter schools?” and he said, “I don’t know, find out.”
So, after two years of attending workshops, conferences and charter development groups, I discovered the exciting educational opportunities of creating a charter, non profit corporation, working with MUSD and Madera County Office of Education (MCOE) in developing Sherman Thomas Charter Schools.
MUSD granted our first charter in 2002 for Sherman Thomas Charter School, servicing Kindergarten through 8th grades, and the dream of creating an innovative educational program was birthed. The curriculum selected was based on Ed Hirsch’s “Core Knowledge”, in which many elementary books were written with titles like “What Every First Grader Should Know”. Each grade level progressively increased with the knowledge of what an American school child should learn about their country, with the educational skills needed to develop productive citizens of the 21st Century, while always ever learning. We were proudly named a Distinguished California School in 2012.
In 2009, Tera Napier and I founded the Sherman Thomas Charter High School (STCHS), which combines the idea of site-based schooling, with part of their education being independent study. This would give a student and parents a choice in high school education based upon the student's and family’s needs. A caveat we felt necessary was that high school students needed more projects of giving back to their community. A requirement to graduate from STCHS was implemented, called “Service Learning”, whereby students selected their own project to provide a “gift” of their passion or mission back to their community. The high school has been highly regarded and accredited by Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) with University approved A-G courses and NCAA approved for the athletes.
In 2016, the eighth grade teacher, Jamie Brock, came to me with a dream of hers. She wanted to open a junior high school geared for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM). I suggested that it should be a new “real” middle school of 6th, 7th and 8th grades to more correctly group students who are socially and educationally developing together. This school has become a reality, being chartered by MUSD in 2016 and classes began in August 2017.
Throughout these past 18 years, we have had the opportunity to educate some of the most amazing young men and women of Madera. Many are now in a wide variety of vocations, ranging from teaching to the military and are productive young leaders in Madera and our country. My joy has always been in seeing our students return back to our campuses to share their experiences as they have matured. The fact that some of our former students are now parents of their own children, whom have chosen to send their children through our educational programs, stands as a testimonial of the success of Sherman Thomas Charter Schools.
Looking forward to what the future holds!
Roger Leach, Founder and Executive Director
Tera Napier is the Deputy Director at Sherman Thomas Charter Schools in Madera, California. During her tenure guiding the K-8 program she has seen STCS ride a continuous wave of academic improvement to become the highest-performing school in the city of Madera, as well as a 2014 California Distinguished School. Her efforts have also created the foundation for two additional schools – Sherman Thomas Charter High School and the Sherman Thomas STEM Academy. Her success and expertise have distinguished her as one of the leading school choice advocates and school leaders in the Central Valley.
Jamie Brock is the principal of Sherman Thomas STEM Academy, a 6th- 8th grade middle school with a STEM focus and college and career emphasis. After completing her B.A. at Fresno Pacific, she earned her multiple subject and single subject mathematics teaching credentials as well as her administrative credential. She worked at STCS for 10 years (as the 8th grade teacher and vice principal) and STCHS for 3 years (as the math teacher and vice principal). Jamie is excited to be bringing this new school choice to her hometown.
Jessica Montemayor is the principal at Sherman Thomas Charter High school. Jessica has been teaching since 2003. She started her education as a 5th grade teacher, worked with new teachers through coaching, and was a Guidance and Instructional Specialist at Sherman Thomas Charter School. Jessica has been at STCHS since its beginning in 2009. She started as the English teacher, supervising teacher, and now, your principal.
Lisa Rider is the Principal at Sherman Thomas Charter School, a K-8 school in Madera, California. After receiving her BA at CSU Stanislaus and then her teaching credential at Fresno Pacific University, she came to work for Sherman Thomas. In the fourteen years she has been here at Sherman Thomas, Lisa has taught 4th, 6th, and 7th grades and was the Lead Teacher for two years and Vice-principal for one year. Lisa is excited to be leading a school that she believes in!
Here are some other resources for information:
LCAP (Local Control Accountability Plan)
The LCAP is a three-year plan that describes the goals, actions, services, and expenditures to support positive student outcomes that address state and local priorities. The LCAP provides an opportunity for local educational agencies (LEAs) to share their stories of how, what, and why programs and services are selected to meet their local needs.
The following is information regarding your rights and responsibilities regarding filing a Title IX Complaint.
Title IX Coordinator Contact Information
All complaints should be sent to our Title IX Coordinator, who can be reached at:
101 W. Adell
Madera, Ca 93638
Your Rights and Responsibilities Under Title IX
(a) You have the right to fair and equitable treatment and you shall not be discriminated against based on your sex.
(b) You have the right to be provided with an equitable opportunity to participate in all academic extracurricular activities and athletics offered by the Sherman Thomas Charter Schools (“STCS or the “School”).
(c) You have the right to inquire of the athletic director or other appropriate STCS administrator as to the athletic opportunities offered by the School.
(d) You have the right to apply for athletic scholarships.
(e) You have the right to receive equitable treatment and benefits in the provision of all of the following:
(f) You have the right to have access to a gender equity coordinator to answer questions regarding gender equity laws. The gender equity officer is the Title IX Coordinator. Please see above for this Coordinator’s contact information.
(g) You have the right to contact the State Department of Education and the California Interscholastic Federation to access information on gender equity laws.
(h) You have the right to file a confidential discrimination complaint with the United States Office for Civil Rights or the State Department of Education if you believe you have been discriminated against or if you believe you have received unequal treatment on the basis of your sex. See below for more information regarding how to file a complaint.
(i) You have the right to pursue civil remedies if you have been discriminated against.
(j) You have the right to be protected against retaliation if you file a discrimination complaint.
(k) You can find out more information regarding your rights, STCS’s responsibilities, and access information on gender equity laws from the following resources:
(j) You can find a list of community-based organizations that provide support to youth, and their families, who have been subjected to school-based discrimination, harassment, intimidation, or bullying at: https://www.cde.ca.gov/re/di/eo/
Definition of Discrimination and Harassment Based on Sex Under Ed. Code Section 230
Harassment and other discrimination on the basis of sex include, but are not limited to, the following practices:
(a) On the basis of sex, exclusion of a person or persons from participation in, denial of the benefits of, or subjection to harassment or other discrimination in, any academic, extracurricular, research, occupational training, or other program or activity.
(b) On the basis of sex, provision of different amounts or types of student financial aid, limitation of eligibility for student financial aid, or the application of different criteria to applicants for student financial aid or for participation in the provision of student financial aid by others.
(c) On the basis of sex, exclusion from participation in, or denial of equivalent opportunity in, athletic programs. “Equivalent” means equal or equal in effect.
(d) On the basis of sex, harassment or other discrimination among persons, including, but not limited to, students and nonstudents, or academic and nonacademic personnel, in employment and the conditions thereof, except as it relates to a bona fide occupational qualification.
(e) On the basis of sex, the application of any rule concerning the actual or potential parental, family, or marital status of a person, or the exclusion of any person from any program or activity or employment because of pregnancy or related conditions.
How to File a Complaint Under Title IX
(a) You can find more information regarding how to file a complaint as follows:
(b) A complaint regarding discrimination or harassment based on sex must ordinarily be filed with the U.S. Office for Civil Rights within 180 days of the last act of discrimination. If your complaint involves matters that occurred longer than this and you are requesting a waiver, you will be asked to show good cause why you did not file your complaint within the 180-day period. If you have questions about your situation, you can contact the California branch of the Office for Civil Rights at the address listed below. A complaint filed with STCS under our UCP alleging unlawful discrimination, harassment, intimidation or bullying must be initiated no later than six (6) months from the date when the alleged unlawful discrimination, harassment, intimidation or bullying occurred, or six (6) months from the date when the complainant first obtained knowledge of the facts of the alleged unlawful discrimination, harassment, intimidation or bullying.
(c) The U.S. Office for Civil Rights has its own policies and procedures for investigating complaints. Please review the above link for more information about this process. A complaint filed with STCS under our UCP or Title IX, Harassment, Intimidation, Discrimination, and Bullying Policy will be investigated in compliance with those policies.
(d) There are a variety of ways to file your complaint. You can use the U.S. Office for Civil Rights electronic complaint form filed directly through their website; or mail, email, or send by facsimile your own letter or a completed copy of the Office for Civil Rights Discrimination Complaint Form.
Office for Civil Rights
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue SW
Washington, D.C. 20202
FAX: 202-453-6012; TDD: 800-877-8339
San Francisco Office
Office for Civil Rights
U.S. Department of Education
50 United Nations Plaza
Mail Box 1200, Room 1545
San Francisco, CA 94102
FAX: 415-486-5570; TDD: 800-877-8339
To file a UCP or complaint under our Title IX, Harassment, Intimidation, Discrimination, and Bullying Policy directly with STCS, please follow procedures set forth in those policies.