Charter School Information

What is a Charter School?

Starting a Charter School


Charter Schools in Maryland


Local School System Contact Information

Charter School Job Opportunities

History of Maryland Legislation

Starting a Charter School

Click this link for the Maryland Charter School Founder's Manual, 3rd Edition, which is an indispensible guide for those individuals and groups interested in starting a charter school. Sections run the gamut from how to develop a mission statement, select a curriculum, raise funds, and find a facility through to financial planning and getting parent and community involvement.  There are valuable links to a wide variety of resources including sample vision and mission statements, local school system charter school contacts, and Maryland application deadlines.

You can also click here to go to additional resources for charter school founding groups, such as the Charter School Model Application, Performance Contract. Below are a series of learning modules to assist charter school founding groups in developing their proposal..

Planning and Writing a Charter School Application



I. Mission and Vision.pdf

  • Identifying and Recruiting School’s Founders
  • Comprehensive School Design
  • Charter Drafting
  • Establishing Need for School
  • Developing Clear Mission and Vision
  • Creating Measurable Goals and Objectives
  • Community Involvement
II. Education Plan.pdf
  • School Theme - Grade Levels
  • Geographic Area
  • At-Risk
  • Educational Philosophy
  • Curriculum
  • Pedagogy
  • Alignment with State Standards – Maryland Voluntary State Curriculum
  • Special Education and LEP

III. Business/
Financial Plan.pdf

  • Preparing a School Budget: 1 year; 5 year, and 18 Month Cash Flow Projections
  • Financial Management – GAAP, Policies, Audit
  • Development and Fundraising
  • Start-up Timeline
  • Sub-grant Process

IV. Management Plan.pdf

  • Build Strong Governing Boards That Focus on Results
  • Board Governance
  • Leadership Training
  • Policy Development – Waiver Requests
  • Personnel - Teacher Recruitment and Securing Contracted Services
  • Planning for Start-up
  • Relationship to BOE and Department – Division of Responsibilities

V. Facility Plan.pdf

  • Property Procurement
  • Lease Negotiations
  • Facility Assessment
  • Zoning
  • Planning for Physical Improvements
  • Transportation
  • Breakfast/Lunch Program
  • Technology

VI. A. Evaluation Plan – Student and School.pdf

  • Defining and Measuring Student Performance
  • Mandatory Testing & NCLB
  • Performance Measures and Outcomes
  • Reporting
  • Annual Report

VI. B. Charter School Legal Issues.pdf

  • MD Charter School Law
  • District Mandates
  • Charter School Incorporation