Become a Charter School
Opening a new public school academy (charter school) is a fairly involved process, which requires strong commitment from a dedicated group of individuals. While this task is enormous, it has been done a number of times in Michigan. There are six basic steps, outlined below, which would go a long way toward successfully opening one of these schools.
Step #1: Determine if there is a need for a public school academy.
- Are there educational needs in your community that are not being met by the traditional public schools?
- Are there enough families with school-aged students in your community who share this view?
Step #2: Familiarize yourself with the charter school movement.
- Visit some public school academies.
- Gather information about public school academies.
- Study these online resources:
Step #3: Decide if you want to open your charter school.
- If the decision is "Yes," then go to Step #4.
- If the decision is "No," then become involved in helping to improve your community's traditional public school(s).
Step #4: Organize a group of charter school supporters in your community.
- Develop an educational vision (Mission Statement) for your group.
- Decide upon a reasonable time frame for opening this public school academy.
- Identify a targeted student population.
- Consider if you want this public school academy to be self-managed or managed by an ESP (educational service provider).
Step #5: Contact organizations that can sponsor your public school academy.
These public school academy sponsors (authorizers) include:
- Public universities
- Community colleges
- Intermediate school districts
- Local school districts
Step #6: Review the charter application process.
NOTE: Eastern Michigan University is not currently accepting applications.
- Generally, applications will be accepted from January 1 to February 1. However, the actual dates of the application window will be posted on the Charter Schools Office homepage when applications are being accepted.
- A sample Phase I application is available for your review:
- The Charter Schools Office must receive the application by the closing date of the Phase I application window in order to consider the application. No applications received outside the Application window will be considered.
- After the Phase I application window has closed, the Charter Schools Office will review all applications and notify applicants whether or not they have been selected to continue to the Phase II application process.
- Correspondence and questions may be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- For information regarding the application cycle of other authorizers and a list of other authorizers currently accepting applications, visit the Michigan Council of Charter School Authorizers website.