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Applying for a Charter

Applying to open a charter school in NYC is an extensive process. Not only must you develop a thoughtful school design, but you must also articulate that vision in an detailed application to one of New York’s two authorizers. And the process doesn’t end there - capacity interviews, community engagement, and facilities requests are just some of the other hurdles you will need to tackle. Fortunately, you don’t have to go through it alone. With programs, resources and mentorships to guide you through the process, the Charter Center team will help get you moving in the right direction.

With industry experts on hand and seminars focused on developing stronger applications, the Apply Right program helps planning teams get their vision off the ground. Offered in two phases, Apply Right provides participants with the tools, guidance and resources needed to ensure their charter application is ready for submission.

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New York’s Charter School Authorizers

New York State has three authorizers, the State Education Department (NYSED), the State University of New York (SUNY) and the NYC Department of Education. Only NYSED and SUNY are currently authorizing new charters. Each has their own application timelines and criteria for approval. Generally, the process works as follows:

1. Teams interested in starting a charter school must first select which authorizer they want to work with.

2. Planning teams are required to submit a Letter of Intent in accordance with the deadline set forth in the authorizer’s Request for Proposals (RFP).

3. Authorizers will then invite teams they deem qualified to submit full proposals.

4. Once the applications are in, the authorizers will arrange capacity interviews with planning teams whose applications meet their initial criteria.

5. A charter is issued following approval from a Board of Regents vote.

Resources

Examples of Full Charter School Applications to NYSED

Three charter schools recently approved by the New York State Education Department (NYSED) share their applications.

Examples of Full Charter School Applications to SUNY

Three charter schools recently approved by the State University of New York (SUNY) share their applications.

Charter Schools Act of 1998 New York State (as Amended)

New York State’s law on charter schools regulates charter school approvals, renewals, governance, programs, enrollment, facilities, and more.