Have questions about charter schools? Here are the answers you’re looking for.
Charter schools have proven to be an excellent source of education for millions of students across the United States. But even though they’ve become more popular in recent years than ever before, many people still don’t know how they operate.
Today, we’re going to try to solve this problem by answering some of the most common questions about charter schools that we’re often asked or have heard from others in education.
Are Charter Schools Considered Public Schools?
One of the biggest misconceptions about charter schools is that they’re private institutions. On the contrary, charter schools have always been public schools. They’re simply governed by what’s called a charter, hence their name, which is one of the things that sets them apart. They are typically more accessible and have more flexibility than traditional public schools, but they’re still held to a certain level of standards.
Who Is Permitted to Attend Charter Schools?
Since their inception, charter schools have been known for their high level of diversity. They have no tolerance for any type of discrimination against gender, race, religion, etc. They’re open to all students regardless of background or special needs, which encompasses physical and learning disabilities. A charter school’s discrimination policy is in effect at all times, including throughout the enrollment process and anytime during the school year.
Do Charter Schools Have Attendance Boundaries?
An important advantage of charter schools is that they don’t have as many restrictions on attendance as public schools. Instead of being limited to students that live within the same school district, charter schools accept students outside the district. The only limitation would be certain city or state laws that the charter school must abide by. Simply get in contact with the school you’re interested in, and they’ll determine eligibility.
Is There a Tuition for Attending a Charter School?
Since a lot of people mistakenly believe that charter schools are private, they also assume that there’s a large tuition involved. But no, there’s no cost for your child to attend a charter school. Even though charter schools are tuition-free, many parents do take it upon themselves to donate to their child’s charter school to show support. However, this is absolutely never pushed upon parents or expected of them.
How Do Application and Enrollment Work?
The application and enrollment process for your local charter school is relatively simple. It begins by filling out an application with basic information such as the student’s name, grade level, and contact information. If there are more applications than there are spots available, the school will hold a random lottery to determine which students will be enrolled.
For those enrolled, additional information such as emergency contacts will be needed. If a student isn’t selected in the lottery, their name is automatically added to a waiting list.
How Does a Charter School’s Waiting List Work?
Many charter schools across the country are very easy to get into. Although they’re popular, they have plenty of staff available, which means your child will be instantly accepted once his or her application has been received.
However, there are certain areas where charter schools might require you to be on a waiting list, possibly because they’re extremely popular or there aren’t quite enough schools to fill the need. A waiting list is also used after a lottery for enrollment has been held. Whatever the reason, they’ll allow you to be put on a waiting list for when a spot opens up.
Do Charter Schools Have an Established Curriculum?
Like any public school, charter schools must follow certain curriculum guidelines. However, they also have a great deal of flexibility in how those guidelines are met.
This allows a teacher to customize a child’s curriculum to meet his or her needs. By using this method, many students have found success despite having difficulties at previous schools. This curriculum can also be adjusted as needed throughout the school year.
Do Charter Schools Have Any Admission Requirements?
As discussed above, charter schools are open to all students except those limited by location as determined by city or state guidelines. Since charter schools are public, there are no admission requirements. In other words, a student doesn’t need to pass an entrance exam or have minimum grades to be submitted.
Contact Horizon Charter School for Questions About Charter Schools
Horizon Charter School in Tampa and Hillsborough can put your child on the path to educational success. If you have any other questions about charter schools or would like to set up a tour of our campus, reach out to us at (813) 887-3800 today.