History of Charter School Educattion

The charter school idea in the United States was originated by Ray Budde, a professor at the University of Massachusetts Amherst and embraced by Albert Shanker, President of the American Federation of Teachers, in 1988 when he called for the reform of the public schools by establishing "charter schools" or "schools of choice". At the time, a few schools already existed that were not called charter schools but embodied some of their principles, such as H-B Woodlawn. As originally conceived, the ideal model of a charter school was as a legally and financially autonomous public school (without tuition, religious affiliation, or selective student admissions) that would operate much like a private business—free from many state laws and district regulations, and accountable more for student outcomes rather than for processes or inputs (such as Carnegie Units and teacher certification requirements).

Minnesota was the first state to pass a charter school law in 1991. California was second, in 1992. As of 2009, 41 states and the District of Columbia have charter school laws.