Opening A Charter Public School In Washington State

Washington State’s charter school law was passed to support the creation of high-quality public school options for students that have been systemically underserved by existing systems in recognition of the fact that public education in the United States was not originally designed with all students in mind. The strongest charter public schools are those that are led by community members that are seeking to design and launch schools that leverage the assets and expertise of their community and also respond to the challenges faced.

Above is a high-level roadmap to opening a charter public school in Washington that gives an overview of the multi-year start-up journey. Each step requires unique tasks and preparations, and the Introduction to the WA Charter Public School Application Process course provides resources and insights to support them.

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Take a Course: Introduction to the WA State Charter Public School Application Process 

This online course enables future charter starters to move at their own pace as they learn about the major components of the charter application, best practices in school design, and common application-writing pitfalls to avoid. Through this course, you can access resources and articles that support the development of community-centered school design and hear from current Washington charter leaders who have successfully navigated the charter authorization process and launched schools that are co-constructed with – and responsive to the needs and assets of – families and communities.

Twelve engaging modules including with six hours of video content cover the basics of the charter application and provide tips about how to prepare for a capacity interview about your school model – an important step in the authorization process. You can stop and return to the videos and texts as frequently as you would like as you work through your own school founding process. Each video has closed captions, and if viewing on Google’s Chrome browser, captions and website text can be translated into over 100 languages.

Black, Brown, Asian, Indigenous, founders of color are strongly encouraged to apply.


Schedule a Charter 101

Have you been dreaming of starting a new public school but need to learn more about what charter schools are and how they work? The WA Charters team can meet with your founding group, board of directors, or community-based organization to share more about the unique Washington state charter law, the process and requirements for starting and operating charter schools, and resources to help you along the way.

Presentations can be tailored to the specific questions and interests of the group.

Email to schedule a Charter 101.