WHAT ARE CHARTER PUBLIC SCHOOLS?
Charter public schools, authorized by the Education Reform Act of 1993, are an important part of the Massachusetts public school system. Since the fall of 1995, the Massachusetts charter public school sector has grown from an initial cohort of 15 schools to over 70 programmatically diverse schools across the state.
CHARTER PUBLIC SCHOOLS HAVE GREATER AUTONOMY
Schools operate under five-year “charters” granted by the Commonwealth’s Board of Elementary and Secondary Education. Charter public schools have greater flexibility in how they approach key elements of education, including:
WHERE ARE CHARTER PUBLIC SCHOOLS IN MASSACHUSETTS?
- Students 46000
- Teachers 3000
- Charters 70
- Gateway Cities 50%
- Boston 29%
- Suburban & Rural 21%
charter public schools serve a diverse student population
CHARTER PUBLIC SCHOOLS ARE POSITIVELY IMPACTING STUDENTS AND FAMILIES
Students are more likely to meet grade-level expectations*
*This figure shows the percent of students in each group in Grade 10 who met or exceeded expectations on the 2022 MCAS exam. Data come from the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education School and District Profiles and are based on a comparison of all Commonwealth charter public schools and districts across the state.
*This figure shows the percent of 2021 high school graduates who enrolled in a post-secondary institution by March 2022. Data come from the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education School and District profiles.
**This figure shows the percent of 2019 highs school graduates who graduated from high school, matriculated intro college, and reenrolled for a second year. Data come from the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education District Analysis Review Tool.
Children in Massachusetts charter schools grew significantly more in reading and math than their peers in traditional district schools, gaining the equivalent of 41 extra days – or nearly 2 months – of learning in both reading and math in a single year.
*Based on Stanford University’s Center for Research on Education Outcomes studies; data compares Massachusetts charter public school students to district students from the same demographic backgrounds and charter public schools to the district schools the students formerly attended.
Hear From Our Students, Families, and Teachers
- Aaron Kesler, Teacher at the Boston Renaissance Charter Public School
- Siddhi Shukla, High School Math Teacher at Pioneer Charter School of Science II
- Rachel Wetschensky, Reading Specialist at Prospect Hill Academy
- Michael Caban, Teacher at Phoenix Charter Academy Lawrence
- Katharine Hinkle, Science Teacher at Innovation Academy Charter School
- Deb Merriam, Academic Dean and Parent at Francis W. Parker Charter Essential School
- Rachel Jean-Louis, Former Student and Middle School Principal at Community Charter School of Cambridge