Georgia is offering a growing number of school choice options to parents.
Public School Choice:
Georgia offers public school choice through intra-district and inter-district enrollment among public schools. It also has a moderately strong charter school law. According to the Center for Education Reform, approximately 58,000 students were enrolled in the state’s 109 public charter schools in 2010.
Private School Choice:
Georgia operates two programs to provide private school choice. The Georgia Special Needs Scholarship Program allows special-needs students to receive scholarships to attend a private school of their choice. Over 3,000 students participated in this program in 2013, attending more than 230 different private schools. Additionally, the Georgia Tax Credit for Private School Costs and Scholarship Donations allows individuals and businesses to receive a tax credit for donating to a Student Scholarship Organization (SSO), which provide scholarships for students to attend a private school of their choice. In 2011, 35 organizations awarded scholarships to over 11,000 students.
According to the Center for Education Reform, Georgia's charter school law was recently improved. Now, the State Charter Schools Commission, and other independent authorizers, can authorize charter schools. According to the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, over 60,000 students were enrolled in the state’s 109 public charter schools in 2013.
According to Keeping Pace with K-12 Online Learning, Georgia has a state-led virtual school, the Georgia Virtual School (GAVS); two virtual charter schools; and several district online programs. Gwinette County’s Online Campus and Cobb Virtual Academy are two district-operated programs that offer a full-time virtual school option to students. In 2010-2011, Gwinette Online offered approximately 5,000 courses. Overall, in 2010-2011 approximately 14,000 students in Georgia took courses online, and 5,000 students were enrolled in a full-time virtual school.
Click here for detailed information on Georgia's public school system and see below for school choice contacts and a history of school choice legislation in Georgia.