Notice is hereby given that the Board of Education of The School District of Philadelphia (“School District”) shall hold initial public hearings pursuant to the Charter School Law on applications for new charter schools in Philadelphia. The hearings will be held on December 17, 2018 at the Education Center, 440 N. Broad Street, in the 1st Floor Board of Education Committee Room, Suite 101.

Hearings shall commence at 4:00 p.m. Each charter applicant will be given fifteen (15) minutes to present information about its application.  The following charter applicants will present in the following order:

  1. Frederick Douglass Charter High School
  2. Joan Myers Brown Academy: A String Theory Charter School
  3. Tacony Academy Charter School at St. Vincent’s

The Board of Education will receive public comment from Philadelphia residents on specific charter applications on December 17th. Public comment shall start at approximately 5:00 p.m. Individuals must register to speak at the public comment session by calling 215-400-4090 or by registering in person during the hearing by 6:00 p.m. Each individual shall have three minutes to speak.

The Board of Education also will accept written public testimony on new charter applications from Philadelphia residents through January 25, 2019 at 5:00 p.m. EST. Testimony may be submitted in writing or via email to If submitted in writing, written testimony must be postmarked by January 25, 2019 and addressed to:

Board of Education
School District of Philadelphia
440 N. Broad Street, Suite 101
Philadelphia, PA 19130


Regardless of submission method, all written testimony should include the full name and address of the sender, in order to establish Philadelphia residency. Additionally, written testimony should clearly indicate the specific new charter application to which the testimony refers. All written testimony received by the Board of Education will be made part of the public record for the respective new charter application hearing.


Thank you for your interest in applying to open a new charter school in Philadelphia. All brick-and-mortar charter schools in Philadelphia are authorized by the Board of Education of the School District of Philadelphia. Each academic year represents a new cycle for new charter applications. Per the Charter School Law, the new charter application cycle has a fixed application date of November 15 of the year prior to the year in which a charter applicant seeks to open the new charter school.

The 2018-19 application cycle for new charter schools in Philadelphia is underway. Please use the links below to access the new charter application materials for the 2018-19 cycle:

For charter schools seeking to open in the 2019–20 school year, the deadline for submitting all applications and supporting materials to the Charter Schools Office (CSO) was November 15, 2018. 

NOTE:  The information on this page pertains to the application process to open a new charter school in Philadelphia.  If you are seeking more information on how to apply for admission into a charter school for a student, please visit our Directory.

* Appendix V: Budget Template was updated on October 2, 2018.

Information Sessions

The CSO hosted three informational meetings regarding the New Charter Application process (see dates below).  If you have any questions regarding the information sessions that were held, please email or call 215-400-6068. Please use the link below to access the New Charter Application Information Session presentation:


  • The CSO holds informational meetings in September and October.
  • Letters of Intent were due by October 15, 2018.
  • Completed applications and supporting materials were due to the CSO by November 15, 2018.
  • Within 45 days of the application deadline, the Board of Education will hold a public hearing to review all charter applications.
  • Within 75 days of the first public hearing, the Board of Education will determine whether to grant or deny each new charter.

Application Requirements

The CSO updates New Charter Application materials each academic year. Applicant teams seeking to open a new charter school in Philadelphia are encouraged to review both the Charter School Law and prior year’s application guidance and evaluation reports for submitted New Charter Applications prior to submitting a New Charter Application. Please note: The CSO does not review or provide feedback on draft applications. Once an application is submitted by the due date, it is considered final and will be reviewed as submitted.

2018-19 New Charter Applications

The table below contains information from New Charter Application Letters of Intent for the 2018-19 Cycle that were submitted to the Charter Schools Office by October 15, 2018. The table has been updated with information on submitted applications, including application narratives.

Proposed School NameStatusGrade Span (at scale)Enrollment (at scale)Primary Contact Email Address
ASPIRA College Prep
Charter School
Not Submitted
ASPIRA Prep Charter SchoolNot Submitted
Joan Myers Brown Academy: A String Theory Charter SchoolApplication SubmittedK-8900Jason
New Foundations Charter SchoolNot Submitted
Frederick Douglass Charter High SchoolApplication Submitted9-12500Michelle
Philadelphia Montessori Charter SchoolNot Submitted
Edward T. Steel Charter SchoolNot Submitted
Tacony Academy Charter School at St. Vincent’sApplication SubmittedK-8900Dr. Margery