Date Published: 
February 28, 2017


Contact: Dominic Slowey  

Massachusetts Charter Public School Assoc.



Expansions of several others also approved

BOSTON, FEBRUARY 28, 2017 – The state Board of Elementary and Secondary Education last night approved three new charter public schools in Western, Southeastern and Central Massachusetts, and the expansion of several existing schools - adding more than 2,000 new charter seats across the state.

“Demand for high quality public school options is still extremely strong in districts from Cape Cod to the Berkshires,” said MCPSA Executive Director Marc Kenen. “These new charter public schools will bring additional high quality public educational choices to families in those communities, while the expansions will allow highly successful public charters to serve more children in the communities they serve.”

Kenen said he expects to see charter growth “continue in a steady, deliberate fashion in communities where there is still room under existing enrollment caps.”

The Board approvals include:

Hampden Charter School of Science, which would open in 2018, will initially serve 252 students in grades 6-9 from Agawam, Holyoke, Westfield and West Springfield, and grow to serve 588 students in grades 6-12. The school is a replication of the highly successful HCSS in Chicopee, which has been operating for ten years, and has a math and science focus.

Map Academy Charter School, which would open in 2018, will initially serve 130 students in grades 9-12 from Carver, Plymouth, and Wareham, and grow to 300 students. It would serve students who have dropped out of school or who are at risk of dropping out.

Old Sturbridge Academy Charter Public School, which will open this fall, will initially serve 160 students in kindergarten through grade 3 from Sturbridge, Brimfield, Brookfield, Holland, Monson, North Brookfield, Palmer, Southbridge, Spencer-East Brookfield, Wales and Webster. It will grow to serve 360 students in Grades K-8. It will offer project-based learning, an emphasis on character development, and daily access to museum resources at Old Sturbridge Village.

Approved school expansions:

Alma del Mar Charter School in New Bedford (90 additional seats) and Community Charter School of Cambridge (60 additional seats).

In November, the Board approved a request from Foxborough Regional Charter School to increase its maximum enrollment by 400 seats. In January, the Board approved three requests to increase maximum enrollment: Boston Collegiate Charter School (an increase of 35 seats), Boston Preparatory Charter Public School (an increase of 300 seats), and Sturgis Charter Public School in Hyannis (an increase of 50 seats).