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|>||What is a Charter Public School?|
|>||Why teach in a charter school?|
|>||Helpful Charter School Links|
Charter schools are public schools, authorized by the state department of education and operating tuition free for students in that state. Founders are generally parents, community members, and/or members of the general public, who come together and write a proposal for a school. Often charter public schools are organized around a specific mission, theme, or curricular focus. Many charter schools are founded to bridge the achievement gap of students from urban areas. The department of education determines which charter public schools will open and provides rigorous review, oversight, and evaluation of those schools.
In exchange for specific freedoms (in organizational structure, mission, and academic program), charter public schools are held to high levels of accountability; they must successfully manage school finances and operations, and they must demonstrate student achievement; if they don't, the school is closed.
Charter public schools began in Minnesota in 1991 as a way to offer students the choice to attend new and different public schools. Across the country, charter public schools have grown from 1 in 1992 to nearly 3,000 in 2004. In Massachusetts, there are over 20,000 students currently enrolled in 59 charter public schools.
- Charter schools are mission-driven. Often, this mission is to close the "achievement gap" found in a particular urban community.
- Since charter schools are mission-driven, they tend to attract teachers and administrators who believe in that vision and are willing to work together as a team to realize that vision.
- Charter school faculty and administrators have greater freedom to set the goals of the school, plan its operation, and create the curriculum.
- Many charter schools offer superior mentoring and supervision of new teachers.
- Salary and benefits are generally comparable with the district from which students are drawn. At schools where the school day, week or year are longer, staff are compensated accordingly.
Massachusetts Charter Public School Association
Their mission is "to serve, support, and advocate for Massachusetts charter public schools as they strive to achieve the goals of their charters."
U.S. Charter Schools
Has information and links for charter schools in each state.
Charter school associations and management groups:
Runs charter schools in NY and NJ.
Runs charter schools in NY and CT.