CHARTER SCHOOL APPLICATION Process - For Applicants 

The charter school application process provides Louisiana non-profit organizations with the opportunity to create schools that parents and guardians desire for their students. Charter schools can provide new opportunities to students across Louisiana, and especially to the over 130,000 students who are currently stuck in D and F schools across the state.

Virtual Charter Application Orientation Sessions
The Department of Education will be hosting orientation sessions for anyone interested in opening a charter school during this upcoming application cycle.  Please join us for the first of these virtual orientations on Thursday, February 25 from 5-6 p.m. Register in advance by clicking here

2021 New Charter School Application
On January 19, 2021, BESE approved the 2021 Common Charter Application. Applicant groups shall choose to be considered by submitting one of three applications based on requirements set forth:

  • New Operator
    • Nonprofit organization whose primary members (founder and/or proposed school leader) do not have prior experience in leading or managing a public school; and

    • Who do not intend to employ an educational service provider (ESP) with prior experience in leading or managing public schools.

  • Experienced Operator
    • Nonprofit organizations whose primary members (founder and/or proposed school leader) have prior experience in leading or managing a single public school; and/or

    • Nonprofit organizations which have operated more than one charter school; and/or

    • Nonprofit organizations which intend to employ an education service provider (ESP) which has operated more than one charter school.

  • Virtual School Operator
    • Nonprofit organizations that seek to operate a public school facility aligned to the definition of a Virtual School as outlined in BESE Bulletin 126.

In addition to the charter application narratives aligned to one of the applications above, each applicant group must complete and submit this Overview Template along with the rest of the group’s application materials.

Evaluation rubric and standards are now available.

KEY DATES FOR BESE-AUTHORIZED CHARTER APPLICANTS*

  • July 30: BESE Authorized Charter School Letter of Intent Submitted to Louisiana Department of Education Deadline

  • August 13: BESE Authorized Charter School Eligibility Determination Forms Submitted to Louisiana Department of Education

  • September 3: BESE Authorized Charter School Full Application Submitted to Louisiana Department of Education

  • October 12: Charter Proposal Presentations to BESE School Innovation and Turnaround Committee

  • December 14: Final Recommendation of BESE Authorized Charter Applications presented to BESE by Louisiana Department of Education

*Note: This list includes a limited selection of key dates and deadlines. Please review the comprehensive 2021 Charter Application Process Timeline for a complete description of tasks and timelines associated with the 2021 Charter RFA process. 

Please reach out to charters@la.gov with any questions.