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105 ILCS 5/27A-5
(105 ILCS 5/27A-5)
Charter school; legal entity; requirements.
(a) A charter school shall be a public, nonsectarian, nonreligious, non-home
based, and non-profit school. A charter school shall be organized and operated
as a nonprofit corporation or other discrete, legal, nonprofit entity
authorized under the laws of the State of Illinois.
(b) A charter school may be established under this Article by creating a new
school or by converting an existing public school or attendance center to
Beginning on the effective date of this amendatory Act of the 93rd General
Assembly, in all new
applications submitted to the State Board or a local school board to establish
school in a city having a population exceeding 500,000, operation of the
school shall be limited to one campus. The changes made to this Section by this
of the 93rd General
Assembly do not apply to charter schools existing or approved on or before the
effective date of this
(b-5) In this subsection (b-5), "virtual-schooling" means the teaching of courses through online methods with online instructors, rather than the instructor and student being at the same physical location. "Virtual-schooling" includes without limitation instruction provided by full-time, online virtual schools.
From April 1, 2013 through April 1, 2014, there is a moratorium on the establishment of charter schools with virtual-schooling components in school districts other than a school district organized under Article 34 of this Code. This moratorium does not apply to a charter school with virtual-schooling components existing or approved prior to April 1, 2013 or to the renewal of the charter of a charter school with virtual-schooling components already approved prior to April 1, 2013.
On or before March 1, 2014, the Commission shall submit to the General Assembly a report on the effect of virtual-schooling, including without limitation the effect on student performance, the costs associated with virtual-schooling, and issues with oversight. The report shall include policy recommendations for virtual-schooling.
(c) A charter school shall be administered and governed by its board of
directors or other governing body
in the manner provided in its charter. The governing body of a charter school
shall be subject to the Freedom of Information Act and the Open Meetings Act.
(d) A charter school shall comply with all applicable health and safety
requirements applicable to public schools under the laws of the State of
(e) Except as otherwise provided in the School Code, a charter school shall
not charge tuition; provided that a charter school may charge reasonable fees
for textbooks, instructional materials, and student activities.
(f) A charter school shall be responsible for the management and operation
of its fiscal affairs including,
but not limited to, the preparation of its budget. An audit of each charter
school's finances shall be conducted annually by an outside, independent
contractor retained by the charter school. Annually, by December 1, every charter school must submit to the State Board a copy of its audit and a copy of the Form 990 the charter school filed that year with the federal Internal Revenue Service.
(g) A charter school shall comply with all provisions of this Article, the Illinois Educational Labor Relations Act, and
its charter. A charter
school is exempt from all other State laws and regulations in the School Code
schools and local school board policies, except the following:
(1) Sections 10-21.9 and 34-18.5 of the School Code
regarding criminal history records checks and checks of the Statewide Sex Offender Database and Statewide Murderer and Violent Offender Against Youth Database of applicants for employment;
(2) Sections 24-24 and 34-84A of the School Code
regarding discipline of students;
(3) The Local Governmental and Governmental Employees
(4) Section 108.75 of the General Not For Profit
Corporation Act of 1986 regarding indemnification of officers, directors, employees, and agents;
(5) The Abused and Neglected Child Reporting Act;
(6) The Illinois School Student Records Act;
(7) Section 10-17a of the School Code regarding
(8) The P-20 Longitudinal Education Data System Act.
The change made by Public Act 96-104 to this subsection (g) is declaratory of existing law.
(h) A charter school may negotiate and contract with a school district, the
governing body of a State college or university or public community college, or
any other public or for-profit or nonprofit private entity for: (i) the use
of a school building and grounds or any other real property or facilities that
the charter school desires to use or convert for use as a charter school site,
(ii) the operation and maintenance thereof, and
(iii) the provision of any service, activity, or undertaking that the charter
school is required to perform in order to carry out the terms of its charter.
However, a charter school
that is established on
after the effective date of this amendatory Act of the 93rd General
Assembly and that operates
in a city having a population exceeding
500,000 may not contract with a for-profit entity to
manage or operate the school during the period that commences on the
effective date of this amendatory Act of the 93rd General Assembly and
concludes at the end of the 2004-2005 school year.
Except as provided in subsection (i) of this Section, a school district may
charge a charter school reasonable rent for the use of the district's
buildings, grounds, and facilities. Any services for which a charter school
with a school district shall be provided by the district at cost. Any services
for which a charter school contracts with a local school board or with the
governing body of a State college or university or public community college
shall be provided by the public entity at cost.
(i) In no event shall a charter school that is established by converting an
existing school or attendance center to charter school status be required to
pay rent for space
that is deemed available, as negotiated and provided in the charter agreement,
in school district
facilities. However, all other costs for the operation and maintenance of
school district facilities that are used by the charter school shall be subject
to negotiation between
the charter school and the local school board and shall be set forth in the
(j) A charter school may limit student enrollment by age or grade level.
(k) If the charter school is approved by the Commission, then the Commission charter school is its own local education agency.
(Source: P.A. 97-152, eff. 7-20-11; 97-154, eff. 1-1-12; 97-813, eff. 7-13-12; 98-16, eff. 5-24-13.)