Application Process

New Charter School Application Coordinator

Amanda Martinez

WA State Charter School Commission
PO Box 40996
Olympia, WA 98504-0996


New Charter School Application

The New Charter School Application for new charter schools has been released.  The application and materials can be located on the Application Materials webpage.

The Commission has arranged four in-person orientations at various locations. The purpose of the full work-day orientation is to deepen understanding of the Commission’s expectations as articulated in the New Charter School Application, how applications will be evaluated, the purpose and format of public forums, and changes that have occurred to the New Charter School Application since the last cycle.



September 27, 2017
8:30 am – 4:30 pm
Washington Public Utility Districts Association
2nd Floor Board Room
212 Union Avenue SE, Olympia, WA 98501

September 28, 2017
8:30 am – 4:30 pm
Clark College
Gaiser Hall GHL 207
1933 Fort Vancouver Way, Vancouver, WA 98663

October 4, 2017
8:30 am – 4:30 pm
Technology Access Foundation
605 SW 108th Street, Seattle, WA 98146

October 5, 2017
8:30 am – 4:30 pm
Educational Service District 105
Grant Room
33 S 2nd Avenue, Yakima, WA 98902

Applicant Orientation Slides

The applicant orientation slides for schools opening in the 2019-2020 school year that was prepared for the above orientations will be available for viewing here.


Notice of Intent (NOI)

Prior to application, the nonprofit organization must first submit a Notice of Intent To Apply (NOI). The purpose of the NOI is to aid in New Charter School Application planning for the Commission, as well as inform the public of the location of the proposed charter school. The NOI is nonbinding, and applicants may choose not to pursue a full proposal.



Applicants must submit proposals via the Commission’s online submission portal. Once received, applications will be reviewed for completeness. Applicants must deliver hard copies of their proposal to Commission headquarters once their electronic proposal has been deemed complete. Completed proposals will be reviewed by state and national expert evaluators with expertise in the fields of student achievement/performance, school operations/governance, and finance.

Please visit our Application Archive to view previously submitted proposals.


Capacity Interview

Applicants who submit a completed proposal will be invited to an in-person Capacity Interview. The Capacity Interview is a chance for the applicant to demonstrate their team’s capacity to open a high-quality charter school, as well as answer specific questions about their proposal. The Capacity Interview is facilitated by the state and national expert evaluators reviewing the applicant’s proposal.


Public Forum

Applicants who submit a completed proposal must participate in a Public Forum facilitated by the Commission. Everyone is invited to the Public Forum, which provides an opportunity for the parents, community members, local residents, and school district board members and staff to learn about and provide input on the proposed charter school. Applicants are asked to share with the Commission and the public an overview of their proposed school. The Public Forum will be facilitated by the Commission and held as close as possible to the location of the proposed charter school.

Examples of past public forum transcripts may be viewed on our Application Archive pages.


Translation Services

The Commission actively engages in culturally and community responsive practices. To this end, the Commission will have on-site translators at each public forum. The Commission will automatically provide English/Spanish and Spanish/English translators for direct translation via headset, as well as for individuals wishing to give public comment in Spanish.  Individuals giving public comment through a translator will be given an extended period of time to provide public comment.

To request translators for languages other than Spanish, please make your request to:
Amanda Martinez
(360) 725-5511


Recommendation Report

Based on their findings from the charter school applicant’s proposal and Capacity Interview, the state and national expert evaluators will submit a recommendation report of either approval or denial to the Commission. This recommendation report will also be delivered to the applicant. The recommendation report is nonbinding and the Commission has final authority to approve or deny a proposal.

Examples of past recommendation reports may be viewed on our Application Archive pages.


Resolution of Approval or Denial

The Commission will pass approval or denial resolutions for applicant proposals. The resolutions are presented by a Commissioner at the monthly Commission meeting and are voted upon by a quorum of Commissioners. Commission meetings are open to the public. The outcome of the resolution is then reported to the Washington State Board of Education. Applicants whose proposals are approved will enter into a five-year contract with the Commission, to be executed within ninety days of the resolution of approval. Applicants whose proposals are denied are welcome to reapply in subsequent application cycles.

Examples of past resolutions may be viewed on our Application Archive pages.