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Family & Community

For Immediate Release
Wednesday, August 11, 1999
Contact:Jonathan Palumbo

Applications for Seven New Horace Mann Charter Schools are Available

Malden - Massachusetts Commissioner of Education David P. Driscoll announced today that applications are available for teachers, parents and members of the public to apply to open seven new Horace Mann charter schools.

Horace Mann charter schools are public schools that operate under a charter approved by the local school committee and by the local collective bargaining agent.

"Creating a Horace Mann charter school is an exciting opportunity for school committees, superintendents, parents and teachers to join together to start new, innovative, and effective public schools," Commissioner Driscoll said. "These public schools are given the freedom to organize their activities around a core mission, curriculum, or teaching method. In return for this freedom, a charter school is held accountable and must demonstrate good results within five years or lose its charter."

The process begins with a letter of intent, due October 4th, followed by a completed application, due October 18th. Successful applicants will be invited to submit a final application due December 13th. The last phase of the review process includes a panel evaluation, public hearings, comments by district superintendents, and interviews with the applicants. The Board of Education will vote to award new charters in February 2000.

Horace Mann charter schools are operated and managed by a board of trustees that is independent of the local school committee. Funding for these schools comes directly from the local school district. These schools are subject to the same state laws and regulations as are all public schools.

The Department of Education will host two informational sessions for Horace Mann applicants on September 9th, from 4p.m. to 6p.m., at the Doherty Memorial High School in Worcester and on September 10th, from 4p.m. to 6p.m., at the Sabis International Charter School in Springfield.

In the 1998-99 school year, 34 charter schools (30 Commonwealth and 4 Horace Mann) were open, enrolling more than 10,000 students from over 200 school districts across the state. In September, four additional Commonwealth and one Horace Mann charter will open. Statewide, at least 8,000 students are waiting to be enrolled in charter schools.

For Horace Mann applications call the Department of Education Charter School Office at (781) 338-3227, or visit the Department website at

Last Updated: August 11, 1999
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