So you think you want to make the switch and send your kid to a charter school, but you don’t know where to start.
As a part of our ongoing series on charter schools, we’ve identified the best places you can turn to to help you decide which Florida charter school is best for your child.
Find a Florida Charter
There are more than 500 charter schools in Florida today, and navigating the state Department of Education website isn’t always the quickest way to find what you’re looking for. Although the FDOE maps all of the charter schools throughout the state, it isn’t the best tool for locating schools near you.
We’ve found the Florida Consortium of Public Charters does a good job of finding the schools for you. For a list of charter schools located near your home or work zip code, you can search here.
Where are the “A” and “F” Charters?
Maybe you want your kid to attend only the top performing Florida charters. Or maybe you just want to know which schools are the failing charters. To get the rundown on school report cards from 1999-2011, you can click this FDOE page.
The site only sorts schools by county, but it instantly provides a list of every elementary charter school that earned a “B” grade in the 2010-2011 school year—or any other combination you desire.
Before you click search, be sure to check the “charter schools only” box under “school type.”
Charter School FAQs
The Florida Department of Education’s charter school page can answer a lot of basic questions about eligibility standards and parent involvement requirements among charter schools. If you want to brush up on Florida Statutes related to charter schools, the site is probably the best starting off point.
Don’t Forget the School District
A charter school in your area can only exist if the local school district approved it. And although charters have some autonomy from the district, parents can always turn to their local school district to express any concerns about a charter.
New Kid on the Block
The Florida Charter School Alliance was recently formed in May 2011, and their website is still really new. As of now, the Alliance caters more to the charter schools by offering support and guidance to a charter’s Governing Board. The site may not be the best resource for parents looking to enroll their children in the right charter school.