- About Us
- Our vision
- Get involved
- For Schools
Charter schools are free, public, and open to all.
of charter students face socio-economic disadvantages & work to overcome odds
charter schools in Michigan serving over 150,000 students.
additional days a year of learning in reading, students gain at a charter school.
With 285 charter schools across the Mitten, they are an embedded part of Michigan’s public school system, and are free, public, and open to all that apply. No tuition fees or admissions tests here!
Without increased funding, Michigan charter schools provide things like adult language classes, community resources & more to one of the nation’s most diverse student population with 76% economically disadvantaged and 50% African American, 10% LatinX, and 10% English Language Learners.
Eighty percent of charter school teachers are as motivated, or even more motivated, to teach today than when they first entered the profession according to a national survey of more than 1,200 public school teachers.
We believe that K-12 education must continue elevating to meet the needs of modern learners. We hope the education of tomorrow is accessible, accountable, innovative & successful.
Charter schools are free, public, and open to all. Charter schools provide families with another choice within the public school system that has the flexibility and autonomy to meet their students' needs. These independently-operated public schools have the freedom to design classrooms that meet their students’ needs. Whether attending a virtual or brick-and-mortar charter school, these students are public school students.
Charter schools operate under a contract with an authorizer, which can be a public university, community college, intermediate school district, or a local traditional school district. Authorizers are the institutions that decide who can start a new charter school, set expectations and oversee school performance, and decide which schools should continue to serve students or not. Currently, 19 Michigan traditional districts authorize charter schools. All state-chartered schools in Michigan serve as their own Local Education Agency (LEA).
A full-service charter school management company will do everything from establishing the
Not every charter school has a management company, some are entirely independently-managed, while others opt for a-la-carte services, like human resources or accounting.
Every single charter school in the state of Michigan is a tuition-free, public entity with nonprofit status - whether they work with a management company or not.
Many charter schools work with external for-profit organizations, such as management companies and other service providers, to operate their schools - just like traditional public schools who work with vendors to provide things like school lunches, books, and accounting services. However, these partnerships in no way affect the nonprofit status of any public school.
Charter schools have the flexibility and autonomy to differentiate their curriculum, facilities
Charter schools, like district public schools, are funded according to enrollment, and receive funding from the district and the state according to the number of students attending. Charter schools, however, receive no state funding for facilities and cannot leverage local bond and millage funding for their buildings like traditional schools can.
During the 2020-21 school year, charters reported about $12,100 in total revenue per pupil, compared with $13,400 per pupil for local traditional districts.. On average, charter school students receive about $1,300 less than traditional school students.
The board members who serve Michigan’s public schools share many things in common. Whether elected or appointed, school board members are public officials, trustees of our children’s futures and united by the belief that a high-quality education should be accessible to all.
Charter schools serve students and families across Michigan ranging in virtually every demographic category - culturally, socioeconomically, etc. - and as such see support from many, diverse Michiganders. A recent poll showed that support for charter schools is up 5% from 2022, to 64% total, and only 22% of Michiganders have an unfavorable opinion of charters, down from 3% since 2020 (Marketing Research Group, 2022).
Demographically, the poll showed that 54.3% of Democrats, 78.3% of Republicans, and 62.8% of Independents support charters - those numbers are up in every category since 2020.
Simply put, Michigan families want choices in K-12 education, and charter schools are an essential piece of that puzzle.
Yes, as public schools, charters are held to the exact same state-mandated academic standards and participate in the same state testing. You can view the academic performance of any charter school, and compare results with other public charters and traditional public schools by visiting the MI School Data Parent Dashboard for School Transparency.
Charter schools challenge the concept that our long-standing traditional public school system is the best fit for every student and every family. In doing so, charters are also challenging curriculum, facilities setup, management style and more.
Inherently, charters thrive under principles of flexibility and autonomy, which inherently position them as a hot-button issue for political leaders on both sides of the
Now more than ever, charter schools are used as a political test by political contributors. Too many times, to effectively run in a Democratic seat as a lawmaker, there is an unspoken requirement that you will take a stand and oppose charter schools. Yet we know that in Michigan, charter schools are widely supported by various parent demographics.