Charter schools are public schools that are a part of Florida’s program of public education. The School Board of Palm Beach County is the sponsor of the charter schools located in Palm Beach County, Florida.
The School District of Palm Beach County is the sponsor of 50 charter schools as of January 2015. The Charter Department provides academic, financial, operational and technical assistance to these charter schools.
Charter School's Statutory Guiding Principles, Purposes, & Requirements
Charter schools’ guiding principles include the following:
Meet high standards of student achievement while providing parents flexibility to choose among diverse educational opportunities within the state’s public school system.
Promote enhanced academic success and financial efficiency by aligning responsibility with accountability.
Provide parents with sufficient information on whether their child is reading at grade level and whether the child gains at least a year’s worth of learning for every year spent in the charter school.
The charter schools’ mandatory and optional purposes are stated in Florida Statute 1002.33 subsection (2). In addition, charter schools must fulfill all of the requirements set forth in Florida Statute 1002.33 Charter Schools subsection (9).
Charter School Student Enrollment Process
A charter school in Palm Beach County, Florida shall be open to any student covered in an inter-district agreement or residing in the School District of Palm Beach County, Florida. However, in the case of a charter lab school, the charter lab school shall be open to any student eligible to attend the lab school as provided in Florida Statute 1002.32 or who resides in the school district in which the charter lab school is located.
The charter school shall enroll an eligible student who submits a timely application, unless the number of applications exceeds the capacity of a program, class, grade level, or building, In such case, all applicants shall have an equal chance of being admitted through a random election process.
Transportation of charter school students is provided by the charter school as defined in Florida statute 1002.33 subsection (20) Services subparagraph (c).
Process for Opening a Charter School
In summary, a party interested in opening a Charter School with the School District of Palm Beach County as its Sponsor must successfully complete all of the following actions and received approval from the School Board of Palm Beach County. Specific details concerning this topic can be obtained by calling James Pegg, Director, Department of Charter Schools at (561) 434-8779.
Charter school applications are due to the sponsor (school district) by August 1st of each calendar year for charter schools to be opened at the beginning of the school district's next school year, or to be opened at a time agreed to by the applicant and the sponsor.
In addition, section 1002.33(6), F.S., requires charter school applicants to submit an application on the Model Florida Charter School Application developed by the Florida Department of Education (FDOE). The sponsor must then review the application using the Florida Charter School Application Evaluation Instrument evaluation instrument also developed by FDOE.
Applications for the 2017-18 school year are to be submitted by August 1, 2016 at 5:00 P.M. to the Charter Tools Site.
Section 1002.33(6)(c), F.S., provides that a charter school applicant may appeal any denial of that applicant's application or failure to act on an application to the State Board of Education no later than 30 calendar days after receipt of the sponsor's decision or failure to act and shall notify the sponsor of its appeal.
Technical support is available year-round. You may contact the Department of Charter Schools at (561) 969-5875 to schedule a meeting regarding Charter School Applications prior to the August 1st submission date.
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