Charter Schools: Does state law explicitly state that charter school operators or management companies be for-profit or not-for-profit organizations?

Charter Schools: Does state law explicitly state that charter school operators or management companies be for-profit or not-for-profit organizations?

January 2020


This resource contains information about the 45 states, plus the District of Columbia, with charter school laws. It does not contain any information for the five states that have not enacted charter school laws.
 

Does state law explicitly state that charter school operators or management companies be for-profit or not-for-profit organizations?
Alabama Yes. Applicant is defined as any group with a 501(c)3 tax-exempt status, or that has submitted an application for a 501(c)3 tax-exempt status, that develops and submits an application for a public charter school to an authorizer.

Citations: Ala. Code § 16-6F-4
Alaska Charter schools must operate under a contract between the charter school and the local school board.

Citations: Alaska Stat. Ann. § 14.03.255
Arizona No.
Arkansas No.
California Yes. Petitioners that submit charter petitions, or charter schools that submit charter renewal or material revision applications may not operate as, or be operated by, a for-profit corporation, for-profit education management organization, or for-profit charter management organization.

Citations: Cal. Educ. Code § 47604
Colorado Yes. Charter management organizations are defined as being the operations of a for-profit or nonprofit entity that operates one or more charter school.

Citations: Colo. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 22-30.5-702
Connecticut Yes. Charter management organizations are defined as any non-profit organization that is tax-exempt and that contracts with a charter school for educational design, implementation or whole school management services.

Citations: Conn. Gen. Stat. Ann. § 10-66aa
Delaware No.
District of Columbia No
Florida Yes. A charter school must organize as, or be operated by, a nonprofit organization.

However, elsewhere statute implies by possibility that schools may contract with for-profit service providers for management of school operations. High-performing charter systems that may be replicated under state law may be operated by a private, for-profit education management corporation.

Citations: Fla. Stat. Ann. § 1002.33; Fla. Stat. Ann. § 1002.332
Georgia No. However, state law stipulates that a charter school's nonprofit status will not prevent the school from contracting for the services of a for-profit entity.

Citations: Ga. Code Ann. § 20-2-2065
Hawaii No.
Idaho No. Education services providers are defined to mean a nonprofit or for-profit entity that contracts with a public charter school to provide educational services and resources, including administrative support, educational design, implementation or management.

For-profit educational services providers may not have representatives on the public charter school's board of directors.

Citations: Idaho Code Ann. § 33-5202A; Idaho Code Ann. § 33-5206
Illinois No. Charter schools may negotiate and contract with a school district, the governing body of a public postsecondary institution, or any other public, for-profit, or nonprofit entity for, among other things, the provision of any service activity, or undertaking that the charter school is required to perform in order to carry out the terms of its charter.

Citations: 105 Ill. Comp. Stat. § 5/27A-5
Indiana No. Education service provider is defined as meaning a for-profit education management organization, a non-profit charter management organization, school design partner, or any other partner entity with which a charter school intends to contract for educational design, implementation, or comprehensive management.

Citations: Ind. Code Ann. § 20-24-1-6.1
Iowa No.
Kansas No.
Kentucky No.
Louisiana Yes. As provided for in the charter, a nonprofit organization may enter into a contract with a for-profit organization to manage the charter school, and may delegate to the for-profit organization such authority over employment decisions at the charter school as the nonprofit organization deems necessary and proper.

Citations: La. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 17:3997
Maine No.
Maryland No.
Massachusetts No.
Michigan No. Educational management organizations are defined as an entity that enters into a management agreement with a public school academy; and entity is defined as a partnership, nonprofit or business corporation, or any other association, corporation, trust, or other legal entity.

Citations: Mich. Comp. Laws Ann. § 380.503c
Minnesota No. Statute prohibits individuals from, among other items, serving as a member of a charter school board of directors if the individual, their partner, or immediate family members are full or part owner or principal with a for-profit or nonprofit entity or independent contractor with whom the school contracts for professional goods, services, or facilities.

Citations: Minn. Stat. Ann. § 124E.07
Mississippi Yes. Statute states that any education service providers which provide comprehensive management for a charter school must be a nonprofit education organization.

Education service provider is defined as a charter management organization, school design provider or any other partner entity a charter school intends to contract with for educational design, implementation or comprehensive management.

Citations: Miss. Code Ann. § 37-28-39
Missouri No.
Nevada Yes. For-profit entities are prohibited from being charter school operators.

Citations: Nev. Rev. Stat. Ann. 388A.095
New Hampshire Yes. Charter school operators must be not-for-profit organizations. Charter schools may contract with for-profit entities for goods and services. If a member of the board of trustees of a charter school is affiliated with a for-profit entity in a contract agreement with the school, then the trustee must recuse themself from any business with the for-profit entity.

Citations: N.H. Rev. Stat. § 194-B:3; N.H. Rev. Stat. § 194-B:5
New Jersey No. However, if a private entity submits an application to operate a charter school, the majority of trustees of the school may not be representatives of the private entity and the extent to which the private entity is involved in the operation of the school must be outlined in the charter. The private entity may not accrue any net profit from the operation of a charter school.

Citations: N.J. Stat. Ann. 18A:36A-4
New Mexico Yes. For-profit entities may not apply to operate a charter school.

Citations: N.M. Stat. Ann. § 22-8B-6
New York Yes. Both for-profit and non-profit entities may apply to open a charter school, but for-profit entities may not operate or manage a charter school issued under a request for proposal from the State University of New York.

Citations: N.Y. Educ. Law § 2851, N.Y. Educ. Law § 2852
North Carolina Yes. Charter school applicants and operators must be non-profit corporations. Operators must receive federal tax exempt status within 24 months of the final approval of a charter school application.

Citations: N.C. Gen. Stat. Ann. § 115C-218.1 N.C. Gen. Stat. Ann. § 115C-218.15
Ohio No. However, non-profit organizations are eligible to apply to open a new charter school in a challenged school district. Statute does not specify whether or not management companies must be for profit.

Citations: Ohio Rev. Code Ann. § 3314.02
Oklahoma No.
Oregon Yes. An applicant to operate a charter school must be a nonprofit organization and have applied to qualify as a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) organization. Charter schools, including virtual charter schools, are permitted to contract with for-profit entities to provide services or facilities.

Citations: Or. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 338.115 Or. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 338.035
Pennsylvania Yes. Charter schools may not be operated by for-profit entities.

Citations: 24 Pa. Cons. Stat. Ann. § 17-1703-A
Rhode Island Yes. Charter school operators must be not-for-profit organizations.

Citations: R.I. Gen. Laws Ann. § 16-77.2-1; R.I. Gen. Laws Ann. § 16-77.3-1; R.I. Gen. Laws Ann. § 16-77.4-1
South Carolina Yes. Charter school operators must be not-for-profit organizations.

Citations: S.C. Code Ann. § 59-40-40
Tennessee Yes. Charter school sponsors (operators) may not be for-profit entities and they are prohibited from contracting with for-profit entities for services.

Citations: Tenn. Code Ann. § 49-13-124 Tenn. Code Ann. § 49-13-104
Texas Yes. Open-enrollment charter schools must be not-for-profit organizations.

Citations: Tex. Educ. Code Ann. § 12.101
Utah Yes. Charter school operators must be organized as nonprofit corporations. Charter schools authorized by local school boards are exempt from this requirement.

Citations: U.C.A. 1953 § 53G-5-404 U.C.A. 1953 § 53G-5-305 U.C.A. 1953 § 53G-5-302
Virginia No. State policy does not specify if operators or management companies be for-profit or not-for-profit organizations.
Washington Yes. Operators must be a public benefit non-profit corporation.

Citations: Wash. Rev. Code Ann. 28A.710.010
West Virginia Yes. Operators must obtain 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status, but it is not specified for education service providers contracted with charter school operators.

Citations: W. Va. Code, § 18-5G-2 W. Va. Code, § 18-5G-8 W. Va. Code, § 18-5G-9
Wisconsin No. However, if the city of Milwaukee contracts with a for-profit operator, the charter school will be considered a school district entity and the board of the school district will be the employer for all personnel.

Citations: Wis. Stat. Ann. § 118.40
Wyoming No. However, charter schools may not enter into a contract with an independent management company without school board approval. Charter schools are also permitted to organize as a non-profit, but not required.

Citations: Wyo. Stat. Ann. § 21-3-303 Wyo. Stat. Ann. § 21-3-304


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