The Charter School Authorizing program provides high-quality charter schools with the flexibility and freedom to meet students’ needs and innovate, while ensuring that schools are succeeding and open to all. We strive to be a model of excellence in authorizing throughout the state and nation.


Ages served
Grades PK-12
Genders served
All genders
Payments accepted
Varies by school (Tuition free public education)
Referral needed?

Responding to Community Needs

There are many ways to learn, and families and communities deserve access to learning environments best suited for their children. Our Charter School Authorizing program helps ensure that charter schools are operating in a manner which will foster excellent student outcomes.

Quality Authorizing, Quality Schools

Quality authorizing can be a catalyst for charter school quality and growth. Our Charter School Authorizing program believes in smart, proactive, quality authorizing that oversees and fosters the health of charter schools committed to student service, learning, and achievement.

Leading the way in supporting charter schools

Charter school authorizers are essential to the success of charter schools in our state. Volunteers of America’s Charter School Authorizing program is dedicated to authorizing high-quality schools that invest in student service, learning, and achievement. In addition to providing oversight of the schools' operations, finances, and educational outcomes, we also set contractual goals and evaluate schools' progress toward meeting those expectations.

Beyond its work of authorizing great Minnesota charter schools, our Charter School Authorizing program is helping to build a culture of excellence in charter schools across the country. We engage in smart, proactive relationships based on transparency, experience, and respect that add value to the schools with which we work.

Every school is unique, which is why we never use a one-size-fits-all approach. While our work is grounded in providing expanded educational opportunities to students and families, our Charter School Authorizing program works hard to build strong and supportive relationships with schools. We respect our relationship to each of our schools and work to support their needs while always honoring their independence.

Service benefits include:

  • Support to get started – Helping schools as they navigate the complex process of developing their learning program, reaching out to students, securing facilities, and creating strong financial management practices and governance
  • Cooperative oversight – Providing for accountability while preserving charter school autonomy
  • Foster and recognition of success – Encouraging charter school administrators to reach for excellence and we recognize those who achieve it

Our Authorized Schools

Contact us about authorizing a charter school

VOA MN Governance Standards

VOA MN Financial Award

How to Win the VOA MN Academic Award

As one of the first non-profit charter school authorizers in the country, VOA MN/WI has, for over 20 years, pioneered a distinctive approach to authorization that involves proactive and ongoing support, collaborative oversight and productive problem solving. With a goal of fostering success not only for students, but also the staff and teachers, VOA MN/WI authorizes schools that are committed to the investment of quality learning programs and environments. Each June, VOA MN/WI organizes a two-day Charter School Leadership Conference drawing leaders and board members of authorized charter schools from across the state. This year participants gathered in Bemidji to network, learn, share ideas, and connect through engaging activities.