Guide to Charter Schools in Cornelius, North Carolina

The world of education is fluid and ever-changing, and that has never been more true than in these past two years during the COVID-19 pandemic. Students went from in-person learning to online learning and back again. These changes have led parents to reconsider educational plans.


Parents want what is best for their scholars and are looking for a different approach to education. This article will help answer some of the questions about enrolling at a tuition-free public charter school.


What is a Tuition-Free Public Charter School in Cornelius, NC?


A tuition-free, public charter school is similar to a traditional public school as it also offers education to kids in pre-kindergarten to grade 12. Community members such as guardians, parents, and teachers can petition for a new charter opening.


Often, the governing board of the local school district evaluates and approves petitions for the opening of a new charter school. According to the Education Code (EC) of North Carolina, the county boards of education and the State Board of Education can be the authorizing organizations for charter school petitions.


Another similarity shared by charter schools with traditional public schools is the source of funding. Both schools, after all, are funded by the state. However, these two school types differ in administration and management since charter schools have more control. Charter schools enjoy more flexibility in running their schools, including hiring and curriculum management.


Elected school boards, school districts and their board-appointed superintendents oversee traditional public schools, whereas an entity manages charter schools under the supervision of their self-appointed board. This means charter schools have more independence than usual public schools, allowing them to make their own rules and innovate.


What tuition free public charter schools are available in Cornelius, NC?


Our recommendation is Lakeside Charter Academy, a family-oriented K-8 charter school where every child gets individual attention. Our diverse staff and student population intentionally create multicultural learning environments so that everyone can teach and learn from each other. The principal even greets every student personally each morning.


Lakeside creates future leaders by focusing on three pillars of strength: scholarship, leadership and citizenship. These pillars ensure students are challenged academically, learn valuable leadership skills, and are engaged in community service.


We offer diverse after-school programs such as a Theater Club, Lego Club, and Soccer Club. These extracurricular activities help our students come together like a family and create lasting memories. Our students maintain focus and balance classroom learning with other interests.


Are There Other Tuition-Free and Public Charter Schools Available in Cornelius, NC?


You can choose to apply and enroll your children in a tuition-free, public charter school, even if it is outside your school district. Cornelius charter schools do not have to comply with boundary school rules. Thus, parents in Cornelius, Charlotte, Mooresville, Davidson, Mathews, Pineville, and Huntersville can opt for a charter school and not worry about breaking district rules. North Carolina laws state that charter schools admit any child residing in the state if their capacity allows it.


What is the Process of Enrolling my Child in a Tuition-Free Public Charter School in Cornelius, NC?


The enrollment process of charter schools is highly similar to other school types. They require an application where parents have to provide information about the child such as name, address, birth date, ethnic background, and the last school attended.


It is your responsibility to check the charter schools’ application and enrollment deadlines along with the school's specific enrollment rules, policies, and requirements. Charter schools may have different rules and processes but all of their admission rules must comply with state laws. According to North Carolina laws, charter schools cannot implement policies that unlawfully discriminate against their applicants.


It’s important to remember that there is a high possibility of seeing your child’s name on the school’s waitlist, especially if you applied to a sought-after charter school. Many charter schools receive more applications than their capacities allow. Schools that have more applicants than they can take in usually employ a random selection process. The lottery system is a commonly used selection technique by many charter schools.


Do Public Charter Schools Offer High-Quality Education in Cornelius, NC?


Since 1996, charter schools have been present in North Carolina. The number of charter schools in North Carolina has doubled since 2011, and these statistics help prove why this number is increasing.

  • Elementary charter school students perform 9% better than traditional public schools on the English/Language Arts EOC/EOG. Middle school students attending charter schools performed 14% better.

  • Mathematics testing showed similar results with elementary students in charter schools performing 4% better than traditional public schools counterparts, and middle school students performed better by 8%.


About Lakeside


Lakeside Charter Academy is a K-8 community-driven school where caring educators, parents, and local business leaders work to provide unparalleled education. Our approach is nurturing yet challenging, innovative while embracing proven traditions. We are committed to offering a safe, fun environment for children to reach their highest academic potential. Enroll your child today!