Charter schools are public schools, funded by taxpayers, and do not charge tuition. Charter schools must accept all students who enroll, as long as space is available.
Although they are public schools, charter schools different from traditional, district-managed public schools in several ways.
For example, charter schools are not always created or managed by school districts. In many states, state authorizing boards, universities, mayors, and nonprofit organizations can also authorize the opening of a new charter school. These entities create contracts with the schools, which set specific goals and metrics the schools must meet in order to remain open.
In return for agreeing to meet these goals, charter schools are provided with the freedom to be more innovative in their instructional practices, themes, curriculum, and educational methods.
There are nearly 7,000 charter schools across America, serving 2.6 million children. 44 states allow for the creation of public charter schools.