Charter schools are nonsectarian public schools of choice that operate with freedom from many of the regulations that apply to traditional public schools. The "charter" establishing each such school is a performance contract detailing the school's mission, program, goals, students served, methods of assessment, and ways to measure success.
The length of time for which charters are granted varies, but most are granted for 4-5 years. At the end of the term, the entity (sponsor) granting the charter may renew the school's contract. Charter schools are accountable to their sponsor (usually a state or local school board) to produce positive academic results and adhere to the charter contract.
The basic concept of charter schools is that they exercise increased autonomy in return for this accountability. They are accountable for both academic results and fiscal practices to several groups: the sponsor that grants them, the parents who choose them, and the public that funds them.
Application Guidelines to Open a Charter School in Marion County
Applications for new charter schools requesting to open for school year 2021-2022 will be accepted no later than 5:00 PM February 1, 2020.
The application shall be submitted adhering to guidelines set forth in the Model Florida Charter Schools Standard Application Format. The following link includes the directions and requirements for the complete application packet required by Marion County Public Schools (MCPS):
The complete application packet must include:
- 10 hard copy applications in binders, with tabs identifying each section of the application. Pages must be numbered. Attachments and addendums must also be tabbed and numbered.
- An electronic copy, in PDF, must also be submitted. All supplementary materials must be included in the PDF version.
- Consecutive page numbers throughout, aligning with the table of contents
- Application cover sheet
Financial information (budget, etc.) must be submitted in the template approved by MCPS Finance Department, which can be found on the Charter Support Unit Website at: http://www.flcsu.org/budgettemplate/
Applications will be considered by the School Board in the form submitted. Amendments will not be permitted prior to the vote.