CCSA Answers: Out of Grade Level Charter School Authorization

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November 18, 2011

Question: If someone wants to start a charter school for grades 7-12 but in a high school (9-12) local school district, will that local district be able to charter the school, or must the school be chartered by a K-8 district?

Answer: Yes, the local high school district can authorize a 7-12 grade charter school. In 2002, the Charter Schools Act was amended to prohibit out of grade level authorizing. However, a district can authorize a charter school which serves out of grade levels if the charter also serves the grades served by the district. This means that a high school-only district can authorize a charter school serving primary students, if the charter also serves grades 9-12.

Additional information is available in from the California Department of Education.

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