Charter public schools change lives. Here’s how.
Charter schools are free, independent neighborhood public schools open to all children, including students who are English language learners and students with special needs. Charter schools do not have special entrance requirements and have the freedom to be innovative, while being held accountable for advancing student achievement.
Each charter public school is unique – both inside and out. Some may focus on college preparation, math and science, and others integrate the arts into each subject. While the possibilities are endless, charter public schools aim to provide a range of options so that parents can choose the school that best fits their child’s needs.
Charter public schools are the kind of neighborhood schools that parents want for their children – they put children first.
In Illinois, twelve schools are authorized by the Illinois State Board of Education.* Eight are located in Chicago.
There are 4,691 students enrolled in State-authorized schools statewide; 2,930 are enrolled in Chicago.
*The Illinois State Board of Education is an independent authorizer that oversees the performance, compliance and renewal or revocation process of the eleven state authorized charter schools. State authorized charter schools are their own Local Education Agencies (LEA) and receive federal funding directly similar to a traditional school district
The traditional public education system in Illinois has not adequately prepared all students to live successful lives. A history of systemic injustice has led to some students being underserved. Despite many reform efforts, too many Black/African American, Latino, low-income and students with disabilities are still leaving school underprepared for success.
At INCS, we’re working to ensure that all students – no matter their zip code, ethnicity, income or family background – have access to a high quality public education that prepares them to succeed in college, career and life.
Since the charter school movement began 20 years ago, charter public schools have proven to be undeniably successful in serving students and communities in need.
Chicago’s charter public schools serve the highest proportions of students in poverty of any urban charter network in the country. They also serve comparable rates of students of color, English language learners, and special education students as are served by district-run schools.
Because of our continued success, students and families are choosing charter public schools more than ever before. Today, we serve a record number of families across Illinois.
Charter public schools continue to excel in nearly every metric of academic achievement and student outcomes.
In Chicago, students who attend charter public schools are more likely to graduate from high school and college. According to a University of Chicago Consortium on School Research study, on average, charter school students’ performance on post-secondary outcomes was much higher than similar students who attended non-charter high schools.
More than half of students across the district choose not to attend their zoned schools.See the Data
A typical high school student travels an average 3.6 miles to attend a school of their choice.See the Data
Eighty percent of students who opt out of their zoned high school attend another district-run school.See the Data
No matter charter or district-run, all schools are now enrolling students zoned to other schools.See the Data
The majority of students receive a higher quality education when they opt out of their zoned school.See the Data