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Massachusetts Charter Schools

Board Governance and Charter Amendments

Board Governance

Notification and Amendments


Significant Matters and New Circumstances at a Charter School that Require Notification to the Department

Charter schools are required to report certain types of significant matters and new circumstances to the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (Department) in a timely fashion. Notification requires an individual authorized by the board, usually the school leader or a member of the school's administration, to notify the Office of Charter Schools and School Redesign informing the Department of the significant matter or new circumstance. Notification may be submitted via email to charterschools@doe.mass.edu, with the exception of updates that can occur through the Board Member Management System. Information regarding the board of trustees is updated within the Board Member Management System and also recorded in the school's annual report.

The Department requires notification of any significant matters related to an investigation, which include, but are not limited to, all communications made or received by or on behalf of the school with any government audit, investigative, or law enforcement agency. Pursuant to 603 CMR 1.08 (10), every charter school shall notify the Department in writing of all significant matters within two business days.

Pursuant to 603 CMR 1.08 (11), the Department requires notification when schools experience changes in:

  • individuals holding school leadership positions, such as an executive director or principal [whether interim or permanent capacity];
  • the delay of implementation of a granted amendment*;
  • location of the school's facilities within the same municipality and documentation of the school's compliance with state and federal laws, including but not limited to all fire, health, and safety laws and accessibility requirements for the new facility or renovations to the current facility;
  • information regarding the board of trustees, including officers of the school's board of trustees, individuals resigning from the board of trustees, and general contact information for members of the school's board of trustees;
  • general contact information (phone number, mailing address, and email) for the school; or
  • significant decreases in enrollment (more than 10% lower than any previously reported figure).

*Note: If the delay of an amendment request includes a change to the roll out of a grade span change or maximum enrollment increase, the change will require approval of the Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education and requires consultation with the Department.

In addition to notifying the Department of changes in leadership and contact information, charter schools must also update the Department's central Directory Administration system as needed. This is an online system used by all public schools and districts to identify key personnel and contact information. The Directory Administration database is used by many different offices in the Department to distribute important information, and some of the information is also made available to the public on the School Profiles page of the Department's website. Therefore, it is essential that this information be kept current. Charter schools can view, add, update, and delete their own information in the Directory Administration database through the Department's security portal. Schools should contact the Department's data collection unit at 781-338-DATA or data@doe.mass.edu with any questions about this process.

Last Updated: May 20, 2020

 
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