We believe that school innovation holds promise for enhancing the educational opportunities for our students by providing innovative and distinctive educational programs.
Starting a Charter School
In line with our improvement strategy, we look for our charter schools to be drivers of school-wide innovation for the rest of the school district, to expand academic and enrichment opportunities for students, and to accelerate outcomes, particularly for those students who we have not served well enough. The MMSD defines innovation as the process of trying something new or different that has the potential to address an identified need and produce better outcomes for students. Where possible and appropriate, our goal would be to bring proven charter innovation to scale. It is the policy of the School Board to consider the establishment of charter schools that support the District’s mission and belief statements and as provided by law.
The procedure for starting a charter school is outlined in Board policy 10000. We provide a detailed timeline including deadlines for submission and review of planning grants, initial applications and full proposals.
The following guiding principles should drive the conceptualization, development and implementation of an MMSD charter school.
- All charter schools must meet high standards of student achievement while providing increased educational opportunities, including broadening existing opportunities for struggling populations of students;
- All charter schools must have an underlying, research-based theory and history of successful practice that is likely to achieve academic success;
- All charter schools will provide information to parents and students as to the quality of education provided by the charter school and the ongoing academic progress of the individual student;
- All charter schools will ensure equitable access to all students regardless of gender, race and/or disability;
- All charter schools must be financially accountable to the DISTRICT and rely on sustainable funding models;
- All charter schools must ensure the health and safety of all staff and students;
- All externally-developed charter schools must be governed by a governance board that is registered as a 501(c)(3), tax-exempt charitable organization;
- All charter schools must have a plan to hire, retain and recruit a highly-qualified, diverse staff;
- All charter schools must have a clear code of student conduct that includes procedures for positive interventions and social emotional supports.
Submitting an Original Proposal for a Charter School
Before submitting an original proposal for a Charter School, please review the following documents.
- Initial Application Form 2018
- Original Proposal Application Template 2018
- Original Proposal Process Flowchart 2018
- Blank Budget Template 2019
Renewing a Charter School
A charter school established by the Board will be reviewed on a regular basis and renewed in accordance with the provisions of the charter. MMSD recently refined its process for charter school renewal. The following tools support the renewal process. Please review our policy carefully and contact the Senior Executive of Staff with any questions.