How To Start A Charter School – Detailed Guide

If you are looking forward to starting a charter school in your locality, you have come to the right place. Find in this article a detailed stepwise guide on starting a charter school.

Education has turned costly with time. Just like other schools, charter schools are gaining popularity throughout the United States. These are basically public schools, but with its own mode of teaching and independence. The charter schools are funded by the government. It has to follow the same laws a district school does and has to meet all the local and state academic standards.

It isn’t easy to start a charter school. The school must comply with all the standard performance reviews and offer regular amenities. These schools don’t use the traditional way to teach students and follow their own concept. Charter schools focus on trying to innovate with the way they teach and how students learn.

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What makes charter schools different from other schools is its variety of educational options they provide for the children within the public school system. To open a charter school, you will have to follow a complete guide meeting all the guidelines set by the government. Here’s a step by step guide on how you can start a charter school:

Here is a 10 Step Guide On How To Start A Charter School

1. Legal Compliance

First, you should know that not all the states allow opening a charter school. Second, the charter school should meet all the guidelines and standards before they can start to operate legally. Charter schools are funded by the government, so it has to go through the legislative process to obtain legality. To open and operate, a charter school must have all state permits meeting certain legal standards.

2. Capacity & Permissions

Once you go through the legal process, it’s time for you to check the capacities. Several states do not allow charter schools or don’t allow a specific number to operate within that state. Even before you start planning, do check with the state government whether the school is eligible or not. Due to public supervision, governments often set limits on several types of charter schools with restrictions. For example, if you are from the state of South Carolina, visit their online page for resources to start a charter school.

3. Choosing The Concept For Charter School

Charter schools innovate with the way of teaching and learning. The primary aim of a charter school is to provide the society with a better educational opportunity. You have to brainstorm ideas and choose a concept which does not currently exists. Your concept should be able to deliver a unique way of making education better with a well-rounded system.

4. Analyze Your Charter School Concept

Remember the government will only fund the school when they find your idea unique and something different than the current public school system. Analyze your concept, see whether it’s realistic or not and think of ways to add in points into your charter school. The concept should be different than the current public school curriculum. But, make sure your concept complies with the state’s standards of education

5. Establishing Board for Your Charter School

Choose your team, establish your board for the charter school. The school is going to need a team of members for it to run smoothly. So, establishing the board will help the charter school with better governance. Choose your board beforehand and delegate the function to the respective members. The function of the board will help in avoiding internal conflicts and easy delegation of authority.

6. Choosing The Location For Your Charter School

Location plays a vital role here. As this is a school, you have to be very selective while choosing a location. Schools come with playground, facilities, security and other options, so you have to choose a location accordingly. Generally, charter schools choose a location and sign a lease. The state will evaluate the location to make sure it offers all the potential facilities within a central territory.

7. Drafting The Petition

Get a mission statement ready. You will have to include it in the petition with the board you chose. Draft the charter petition by explaining your school plan for a prospective business. Try making it extensive as much as possible defining your idea. The state will first evaluate whether the charter petition is viable or not. Try including a vision and mission for the school with the facilities the school will offer with the structure, curriculum design and hiring practices.

8. Submission & Approval

Submit the letter of intent with all the requisite information. You may have to submit the same at the local school district and Department of Education as well. After submission, now you need to wait for authorization. If the local school district denies your letter of intent, you can appeal the same to the county. If denied again, you can then appeal to the state.

9. Start Hiring Faculty & Staff

If you get the approval from the local district, you can now start hiring staff for your charter school. With the approval, now you have the authority to operate. You will need a host of teachers including administrators and managers for different facilities. To hire staff, you can start putting online job listings or advertise in the local newspapers and magazines.

10. Initiating Admission Process

With your teachers and staff ready, now you can start enrolling students. With the approval, now you can legally start your charter school. The government has certain standards and rules for class size restrictions, admissions and other regulations. Comply with the governmental regulations and go ahead with your school’s mission and vision for the future.

Evaluate the operations on a timely basis, monitor progress and assess the regulatory standards. This is a complete guide on how to start a charter school successfully.