Charter System FAQs

Q: What is a Charter System?

A: A charter system is a local school system that is operating under the terms of a contract between the local Board of Education and the State Board of Education as provided for by the Charter Systems Act. A Charter System contract provides broad flexibility from certain burdensome state mandates, allowing communities to determine the educational needs of students within their district through academic and organizational innovation in exchange for increased accountability and student achievement.

Charter System GraphicQ: What is local school governance in a charter system?

A: The leaders of the Barrow County Charter School System which include the Board of Education, the Superintendent and Executive Cabinet, School Principals and other district leaders, believe in shared governance and recognize the importance and value of involving parents, teachers, community members, and students in the governance of a school. Each of these “shareholder” groups brings a different perspective to the table which provides for healthy collaboration and a more comprehensive review of ideas and issues resulting in better decisions being made at the local school level. The charter system contract outlines how some decision-making authority is granted to local school governance teams in the areas of personnel, finance, curriculum and instruction, school operations, and most importantly, in the area of school improvement. This shared governance process builds a culture of flexibility, empowerment, and accountability at the school level.

Q: What are the Barrow County School System’s top 3 challenges we hope to address during our 10 year charter system contract (7-1-16 to 6-30-26)?

A: The leaders of the Barrow County Charter School System believe that the flexibility and innovation achieved through a charter system contract will help us meet our goals of:

  1. Increasing the high school graduation rate.
  2. Improving the college and career readiness of Barrow County School System graduates.
  3. Successfully managing the continued growth of the Barrow County School System student population both in raw numbers and in increasing diversity.


Additional Charter System Documents: