Charter schools trade greater autonomy over how to operate schools in exchange for greater accountability. In order to continue operating, a charter school must apply and receive periodic approval from the State University of New York Board of Trustees. At charter renewal the SUNY Trustees evaluate schools using the data submitted by the school and the data collected by the Institute along four questions contained in the SUNY Renewal Benchmarks. These questions ask:
These questions frame the academic, fiscal and governance oversight provided by the Institute and the SUNY Trustees during the charter term of a school and are used to hold a school accountable at renewal.
Each SUNY authorized charter school agrees to an Accountability Plan in their first year of operation that becomes part of the school charter agreement. This plan establishes student achievement goals and measures for the SUNY Trustees to evaluate whether the school is an academic success.
School visits are conducted periodically throughout the charter term to ensure a school is making adequate progress toward meeting its accountability goals. A school visit is conducted at the end of the charter term and becomes part of the decision to renew the charter of a school.
As soon as a SUNY authorized school receives a charter, it must comply with reporting requirements and deadlines. These requirements hold a school accountable for academic and fiscal outcomes as well as ensure a school remains a viable organization.