Twenty-two organizations have applied to the state Board of Elementary and Secondary Education to open 34 charter schools in Louisiana in 2015 and beyond. They could substantially increase the number of charters in the state — especially since Louisiana already has 64 charters outstanding, ones granted in previous years to organizations that have yet to use them.
Louisiana has 117 charter schools already in operation, 83 of which are authorized by the state and the rest authorized by local school boards. Fifteen new state charters will open in the fall.
Both BESE and local boards may authorize charter schools, which are publicly funded but run by independent non-profits. But the movement remains concentrated in New Orleans, which leads the United States with 92 percent of its students in charter schools.