Charter Schools

What is a Charter School?

In Hawaii, charter schools are public schools funded on a “per pupil” allocation separate from the Department of Education. They are state-legislated, legally independent, innovative, outcome-based public schools operating under contract with the State Public Charter School Commission (PCSC).

Community based, values driven and academically diverse schools of choice; Hawaii’s 31 Public Charter Schools offer educational programs reflective of the community from which they were established. These dynamic public charter schools are blending the historic and culturally diverse landscape of Hawai’i’s past with innovation, new technologies and academic excellence to allow the students in Hawai’i‘s public charter school system to attain the skills and knowledge necessary to succeed in a global world while maintaining an appreciation and respect for the people, places and languages of Hawaii.

Charter schools are free public schools of choice. They are governed by a Governing School Board that determines policy, secures funding, and does the hiring for the school. Charter schools are free from purchasing restraints and other bureaucratic restrictions allowing for innovative teaching programs. They are required to follow all health and safety codes, teach to the state standards and be in compliance with union agreements. Charter schools are reviewed annually by the Charter School Commision for fiscal, organizational and student achievement accountability.