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Public Charter Schools in Wyoming

Charter schools started small in Wyoming but they are growing thanks to a new law and intense interest from families and school leaders.

Why Charter Schools?

Wyoming's charter school movement began with a small number of school leaders in Laramie looking to offer innovative public school education opportunities to students. Charter schools are public schools, and follow the same state standards, budget and finance laws, and offer special education services for eligible students. They are an established part of the public education system in Wyoming and all states with charter school laws.

The strength of the charter school model rests on true local control. To be successful, charter schools must listen to what parents need and want. Charter school must also balance the values and the needs of their local community with the standards and requirements of the Wyoming Department of Education to produce strong academic outcomes and sound governance and financial management. When this balance is achieved, charter schools are a vibrant strategy for bringing innovation to public education and reducing academic or programmatic gaps within the public school system.

Public charter schools are different kinds of schools. One difference is in their educational model, where a small number of exemptions to the public school code allow for dynamic education models to be offered, such as Montessori, college prep and place-based learning. Another difference is their school governance model, where a school-based board of directors oversees all operations of the charter school, rather than a local school board of education. This"bottoms-up" approach allows charter schools to be nimble and quickly make any adjustments or changes in response to educator and student needs.

Free. Public. Open to all.

Today, more than 900 students attend a charter school in Wyoming, joining 3.7 million students who attend a public charter school in 44 states. More than 250 thousand teachers work in one of the 7,800 charter schools across the country. Wyoming public charter schools are among the many ways that education leaders are providing an alternative to the traditional “one size fits all” model of education.

Learn more about each of Wyoming's public charter schools

I believe that going to a charter school there is more transparency and accountability compared to the large schools. I believe that parents now have a say in our kids' education. I believe that my kids will thrive here, be challenged and become the best they can be.

Mike Van Why
Parent, Prairie View Community School