Building Excellence: How Helping Charters Access Facilities Can Improve Opportunity for Idaho Kids

Finding appropriate instructional space is a perennial challenge for schools of choice which – unlike public district schools – do not have access to public bond markets or public tax levies. Affordable facilities are a serious inhibitor to the growth of the state’s charter public schools, especially start-up charter schools that might bring different programs and learning opportunities to Idaho’s children and families.

This is especially frustrating for three reasons. First, Idaho’s brick-and-mortar charter schools work. On 2015-16 state achievement tests five of the state’s top 15 public schools are charters, while the top three schools in mathematics were all charters. Second, there are more than 6,000 Idaho Children on charter school waitlists. Third, the National Center for Education Statistics projects that Idaho will add upwards of 22, 000 new pre-k-12 students by fall 2022.  Charter public schools can help add new high-quality seats for the state’s growing number of new students.