Independent charter schools are unique from other public charter schools. In Florida, over 50% of the 653 public charter schools are independently operated and not affiliated with a management organization (according to the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools). These "free standing" mostly single operator schools typically have:

 

  • Strong roots in their communities.

 

  • Unique ability to address the needs of students and families within their communities.

 

  • Partnerships with community leaders, organizations, agencies and institutions.

 

  • Access to community resources to support instruction and enrichment.

 

  • Ability to specifically target and serve students with special needs or considerations.

 

  • Position as educational "outliers" that can take public schools in new and positive directions.

 

Independent charter schools also face serious challenges:

 

  • Limited access to capital and other resources.

 

  • Programs and policies are typically developed "from scratch" to meet specific community needs but this puts pressure on the schools to "get it right" from the start or risk losing their charter.

 

  • Educators and administrators in "mom and pop" charter schools often exist in isolation and lack the opportunities to communicate and collaborate with peers.

 

  • Largely excluded from the policy making process. Legislative Advocacy in Tallahassee is dominated by large management companies, therefore policy favors their views on charter school law.

 

Florida Association of Independent Public Schools answers the Need to:

 

  • Facilitate the development and growth of an inter-connected community of independent charter schools and their governing boards, teachers, administrators and board members.

 

  • Promote and facilitate collaboration and professional growth for governing boards, teachers and administrators within individual charter schools across Florida.

 

  • Support communication and community-building among governing boards, teachers and administrators of Florida's independent charter schools.

 

  • Provide membership services that broker's bulk purchasing of goods and services.

 

  • Provide advocacy in Tallahassee, and at the local School Board level. Ensuring that Indie Charter Schools have a voice in the policy-making while supporting those leaders that support our mission.

 

  • Facilitate partnerships with our sister associations for our mutual benefit and policy objectives.

Independent Charter Schools