Charter Renewal

Every New York State charter school has a charter agreement (contract), signed by its board of trustees and its authorizer, that defines its terms of operation and details the promises made to students and their families. The New York Charter Schools Act of 1998 (as amended) limits the maximum length of these agreements to no more than five-years.  As a result, to continue operating, a school must apply to renew its charter at the end of each charter term.  Because the charter is for a limited period and expires unless it is renewed, it is known as a “provisional charter.”  The purpose of making charters provisional is to hold charter schools more accountable than district-run public schools, which are registered instead of chartered.

The Charter Schools Act requires that charter schools submit an application for renewal. 
Not everything, however, that the Charter Schools Institute requires in the renewal application is required by the law.  The Act permits the SUNY Trustees to require additional information.  In order to get the best sense of whether a charter school has lived up to its promises, the SUNY Trustees have determined that schools should submit a number of other documents as part of their application.  In addition, the Charter Schools Institute conducts a renewal visit to schools that apply for renewal.





In short, the SUNY Trustees do not automatically grant charter renewal; a school must demonstrate that it has earned it. Only by providing: 1) a comprehensive, evidence-based, case of the school's growth and increased student achievement over the life of the charter; 2) a description of the systems the school currently has in place to continue that growth; and 3) a set of well-designed plans that will result in further growth in the future, will a school have effectively demonstrated that it deserves to continue the high privilege of educating New York State's children. Throughout the renewal process schools should feel free to contact the Institute with any questions or concerns.


Updated: 9/16/13

                      Attention 2013 Applicants for Renewal

What follows are key resources for schools as they move through the SUNY renewal process or for anyone interested in learning more about SUNY renewal policies and practices:

Renewal of Not-for-Profit Charter School Education Corporations and Charter Schools Authorized by the Board of Trustees of the State University of New York) Revised 9-4-13

The SUNY Trustees' Charter Schools Committee revised the SUNY Renewal Policies to reflect May 2010 amendments to the New York Charter Schools Act that permit one charter school education corporation to operate more than one charter school.


(latest version is now 5.0) Revised 5-8-12

(Revised May 2013)

The Institute generally updates its renewal application each year. For the reference of SUNY authorized charter schools that will come to renewal next year:

Renewal Functional Expenses for Last Year of Charter Term

Renewal Five Year Budget Outlook

-  PowerPoint Presentation used in webinar

 PowerPoint presentation used in webinar






Now Available:

The SUNY Charter
Renewal Handbook (4th Edition)