About Charter Schools
Charter schools seek to provide a different educational option for families.
Who attends charter schools? Whom do they serve?
Nationwide, students in charter schools have similar demographic characteristics to students in the local public schools. In some states, charter schools serve significantly higher percentages of minority or low – income students than the traditional public schools. Charter schools accept students by random, public lottery.
Are all charter schools the same?
Charter schools can vary a great deal in their design, structure, values, and in their results. Vega Collegiate Academy was founded with the mission of developing leaders who are prepared for life beyond high school and college and are prepared to engage productively in their communities.
How are charter schools funded?
As public schools, charter schools are tuition-free. They are funded according to enrollment levels and receive public funds on a per pupil basis. In some states, such as Alaska, Colorado, Minnesota, and New Jersey, they receive less than 100% of the funds allocated to their traditional counterparts for school operations. In other states, such as California, additional funds or loans are made available to them. In most states, charters do not receive capital funds to support facility expenses. Charter schools are entitled to federal categorical funding for which their students are eligible, such as Title I and Special Education monies. Federal legislation provides grants to help charters to manage start-up costs.
What is a charter school and how is it different from other public schools?
A charter school is an independently run public school granted greater flexibility in its operations, in return for greater accountability for performance. The “charter” establishing each school is a performance contract detailing the school’s mission, program, students served, performance goals, and methods of assessment. Charter schools are public schools of choice, meaning that families choose them for their children. Charters serve all students, including those with special needs and English language learners. They operate with freedom from some of the regulations that are imposed upon district schools. Charter schools are accountable for academic results and for upholding the promises made in their charters. They must demonstrate performance in the areas of academic achievement, financial management, and organizational stability. Every five years, charter schools undergo a charter renewal process. If a charter school does not meet performance goals, it may be closed.
Links to more information on Charter Schools in the US:
Vega Collegiate Academy is modeled after the highest performing charter schools in the United States. Take a peak at a few of the schools that inspire us: