Charter School Developers

CSDC's Approach

The oldest charter schools organization in the country, under continuous leadership from Founding Director Eric Premack, CSDC draws on its staff’s 25-year history to provide new school developers with the following:


CSDC's specialists have in-depth knowledge of law, regulations, and best practices in charter schools finance, facilities, operations, governance, accountability, and school design.

Pragmatic insight.

CSDC’s specialists read between the lines and offer strategic “real world” guidance.


CSDC keeps a running dialogue with key people in the charter school sector, including staff from state and local agencies, the legislature, and authorizers. We also develop long-term relationships with school operators and become invested in helping resolve our members’ challenges.

How CSDC Supports Developers

Build your knowledge base.

Webinars. CSDC's Start Smart Workshop  provides an overview of charter school development, including the basics of charter school approval, team development, finance, and facilities. For those just exploring, the workshop can help inform the decision to move forward or not.

Continually advance your skills.

Email Updates. Charter Currents keeps CSDC Members updated on the latest laws, regulations, and trends – like a form of ongoing professional development.

Events. Two CSDC events add to this content and provide opportunities to interact with service providers, with CSDC staff, and with charter school operators: the California Charter Schools Leadership Update Conference and, for those with an approved charter, the Leadership Intensive, an intensive week-long overview of charter school leadership basics.

Get practical guidance, on demand.

Technical assistance. Charter school developers encounter a wide range of issues–some involving highly specialized knowledge. Developers can get information from various agencies, but where more pragmatic or strategic insight is desired, CSDC considers practicality within the school’s specific context. CSDC’s technical assistance can be a critical asset, especially when challenges arise.

Draw on CSDC's resources.

Tools. Access guidance and documents through CSDC’s website or by request. CSDC Members also get unlimited access to website resources, including the Charter Jobs feature, and receive discounts on events and publications. A small number of “Toolkit” publications are available for an additional fee due to the depth of their specialized content. Two publications that can help new school developers avoid reinventing the wheel include the Charter School Incorporation Toolkit and the Sample Charter School Governing Board Policies.

Request specialized assistance.

Consulting. On a limited basis, CSDC assists developers with tasks such as financial plan development, charter petition and MOU reviews, and strategic communications. Also, the authorization or launch process can present specific challenges with which CSDC is particularly well-prepared to help. When challenges require work that exceeds phone and email guidance provided to members, developers can request consulting help.

Thank You & Good Luck

CSDC thanks prospective school developers for their interest in expanding families’ access to alternatives. While the neighborhood school is just right for some kids, we hear countless testimonials on how a charter school has made a life-changing difference for a child. That said, creating a strong school is an intensely demanding task that requires a broad and deep skill set, including masterful instructional expertise. We welcome initial calls with people considering starting a school to help them assess if and how charter school start-up is right for them.

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Gain complete access to and to the ongoing operational support we provide to CSDC Members.


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