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About Charter

The International School of Monterey opened in 2001 as the 429th charter school authorized in the state of California. This means that ISM went through a very thorough application process that held the school founders accountable for planning teaching and instruction based on a sound educational model and for meeting a number of other operational expectations as detailed in the charter proposal. This process resulted in authorization as an independent charter school by the Monterey Peninsula Unified School District.

Subsequently, amid ever-increasing requirements and expectations for charter schools, ISM has successfully renewed its charter four times in keeping with the state requirement to do so every five years.

Approved on December 8, 2020, our current charter authorizes the school through spring 2026. We submitted our draft petition to MPUSD on September 10, 2020. Then, during a public hearing held October 27, we made a brief presentation documenting our status as a High-Performing Charter School, presenting significant changes, and ending with a short video of our students sharing their learning. We also answered the MPUSD Board's questions. The end result was unanimous approval of our renewal at the December 8 meeting of the MPUSD Board. 


Charter Schools in California and the Rest of the USA

ISM is one of approximately 1,300 charter public schools across California. Charters are free, public, and open to all students. Charter schools are independently operated and built on the belief that every student should have the chance to go to a high-quality public school that puts their needs first, regardless of zip code, income, or academic ability level. California’s charter schools are diverse and serve a population that mirrors traditional district schools.

The National Alliance for Public Charter Schools provides extensive resources for those interested in charter schools in the United States. Visit the NAPCS website to get the facts.

The California Charter Schools Association provides resources for those interested in charter schools in our state. As a member school, we have provided links to some of the specific CCSA resources below including links to ISM stories and features on their website. You will find much more by exploring the Understanding Charters section of the CCSA website.


CCSA Understanding Charter Resources

Charter Schools FAQ

Dispelling Myths About Charter Schools