Selected readings on US charter schools
Starting a Charter School is easier and harder than you might think. The process is outlined in the Charter Application easily downloaded from the USOE website. The USOE has training and a department to help guide applicants through the process. That being said, the application format alone is 58 pages. The application I submitted for Aristotle Academy was 258 pages.
The application process can take up to 2 years alone but with determination and an open mind to continuously enhance the application with input from the USOE staff, an application with merit can be approved. With only 7-8 charter applications being approved each year, your chances are only great if you have the passion and vision to keep going in the face of diversity.
Vision and passion are the most important attributes to help you get your charter school up and running. They will keep you focused during the difficult moments when your charter school application doesn’t seem to be going anywhere. But you also need to be organized and willing to do research. Your charter application needs to be based on research and facts.
If you are thinking about starting a school, go to the required training provided by USOE. You can find the dates on the USOE website ( http://www.schools.utah.gov/charterschools/Charter-School-Application/New-School-Application.aspx ) . The training will help you understand the requirements to fill out the application but unfortunately not how to find the information to fill in all the requirements of the application.
If you have passion and vision but not the information or time to complete the application then you still have options. You can hire a consultant to help you fill out the application. A person who has already been through the charter school startup process can help you ensure your application has all the information needed to get approved.
If you are interested in starting a Charter School it is not too early to start. Applications for the 2016/17 school year are due on April 1st 2014.
Source: American Fork Citizen – by Jeanne Whitmore