Generally speaking a charter school is such school that receives public funding but operates independently. This kind of schools is an example of alternative education. Alberta, a Canadian province enacted legislation enabling charter schools in 1994. The first schools under the new legislation were established in 1995. Charter schools in Alberta have much in common with their US counterparts. There were twenty –two similar school as of 2010 in the province and they were operated by 13 charter schools authorities compared with over fifty school boards with the largest one alone having over 200 schools. Chine has a long history of private subsidized schooling akin to chapter schooling in USA. Most of these schools were religious and owned churches or other private parties before the 1980s but they received support from the central government. The dictatorial government of Augusto Pinochet promoted neoliberal reforms in the country in the 1980s. A competitive voucher system in education in 1981 was adopted. These vouchers could be used in both private subsidized and public schools. This can be run for profit. The number of private schools grew from 18.5 % of schools in 1980 to 32.7 % of schools in 2001 after this reform.

Charter school

In both Wales and England in 1988 the United Kingdom established grant – maintained schools. They allowed individual schools that were independent of the local school authority. When in 1998 they were abolished most of them turned into foundation schools. They are really under their local district authority but still have a high degree of autonomy. In New Zealand schools from the type charter school labeled as Partnership schools were allowed for after an agreement between the ACT Party and National Party following the 2011 general election. The controversial legislation passed with a five vote majority. In the United States Minnesota was the first charter school law which was established in 1991. Minnesota had 149 registered charter schools with over 35 000 students attending. Since then forty –one states and the District of Columbia have approved the formation of charter schools. The state government of Texas approved in 1995 the formation of this kind of schools. The early critics feared that that these schools would lure the highest performing and most gifted students from certainly administered public schools. New Orleans is the only place where the majority of public school students attend charter schools. Fully 78 % of all school children there were in charter schools during the 2011 – 2012 school year. New Orleans is the city where undoubtedly the most radical experimentation with charter schools has occurred. The public school system in this town is currently engaged in reforms aimed at decentralizing power away from the pre – Katrina school board central bureaucracy to individual school principals and also charter school boards monitoring charter school performance by granting renewable contracts that permit the closure of those not succeeding and vesting choice in parents of public school students allowing them to enroll their children in almost any school in the district. These contracts are five – year long.