Insight News

Feb 05th

Two more charter school authorizers approved by Minnesota Department of Education

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Twenty-eight charter school authorizers now meet the nationally recognized rigorous state law that brings increased oversight to charter schools

Twenty-eight charter school authorizers have now been approved by the Minnesota Department of Education, including two new authorizers approved by Commissioner Brenda Cassellius on January 19, 2012.

The newest approved charter schools authorizers are:

Germanic-American Institute

St. Catherine University

“Minnesota’s charter school law is a national model for excellence, with the goal of ensuring a high-quality education for every student enrolled in one of the state’s public charter schools,” said Commissioner Brenda Cassellius. “All of our authorizers - including our two newest - must meet nationally recognized standards of quality and accountability, and agree to hold the charter schools they authorize accountable to the high-quality expectations they specify in their charter contracts.”

Minnesota’s improved charter law is designed to increase charter school quality, performance and accountability by shifting MDE’s focus from approving individual charter schools to approving charter school authorizers. Those changes put in place more robust oversight responsibilities for authorizers, requiring them to take on a greater oversight role for the charter schools they authorize. The National Alliance for Public Charter Schools continues to count Minnesota as a leader regarding charter school laws, recently ranking the state as having the second best charter school law in the nation to support the growth of high-quality charter schools.

Previously approved authorizers are:

Anoka Technical College

Audubon Center of the North Woods

Augsburg College

Bethel University

Chisago Lakes Public Schools

Concordia University of St. Paul


Friends of Education

Innovative Quality Schools

Intermediate School District 917

Minneapolis Public Schools

Minnesota Guild of Public Charter Schools

Northfield Public Schools

Novation Education Opportunities

Ordway Center for the Performing Arts

Pillsbury United Communities

Project for Pride in Living

Rochester Community and Technical College

Rushford-Peterson Independent School District

Student Achievement Minnesota

University of Minnesota – Duluth

University of St. Thomas

Volunteers of America – Minnesota

Winona Area Public Schools

Wolf Ridge Environmental Learning Center

YMCA of Metropolitan Minneapolis

For more information on charter schools or the Minnesota Department of Education, visit


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