What is a Charter School?
In 1992, the California Charter Schools Act was passed in order to encourage innovation and increase opportunities for students, families, and teachers within the public education sphere. A charter school is a tuition-free public school that operates independently from local school districts. As schools of choice, all charter schools are open to any student who wants to apply, regardless of where he or she lives within the state. If more students apply than space permits, charter schools are required to hold a lottery for admission. There are no admission tests or tuition fees at charter schools.
Charter schools have flexibility in the design of their school programs, their personnel decisions, and their resource allocation. In exchange for this freedom, public charter schools are held accountable for their school's performance including student achievement, organizational and fiscal management, and stakeholder satisfaction.