Spokane Approved as Charter School Authorizer

For Immediate Release |

September 11, 2013 – Washington State Charter Schools Association (WA Charters) board chair Chris Korsmo issued the following statement on today’s action by the Washington State Board of Education to approve Spokane Public Schools as the state’s first school district charter authorizer:

“We’re thrilled that both the third largest school district in the state and the Board of Education are embracing more public education options for kids, recognizing that a one-size-fits-all approach doesn’t work for every family. Introducing a new level of accountability as Washington’s first school district authorizer, Spokane Public Schools is helping build a great, high-performing public charter school sector to improve learning for all students.”

As independent public schools allowed to be more innovative while being held accountable for improved student achievement, charter schools are approved and overseen by charter authorizers – either school districts approved by the State Board of Education or the state Charter School Commission. Each authorizer has the authority to decide which new school proposals to approve, monitors each school’s operations and academic performance, and decides if the standards required to stay open are being met.

Washington school districts interested in becoming public charter school authorizers for the 2014-15 school year must submit a notice of intent by October 1, 2013.  In November 2013, voters and parents approved the Washington Charter School Initiative, allowing for up to 40 charter schools in the state over a five year period.