About Charter Schools


As an Essential School, Sizer is part of a network of more than 1,000 schools across the country that follow a common set of guidelines (The 10 Common Principles) to make learning more effective, more meaningful and more powerful.

10 COMMON PRINCIPLES of Essential Schools:

1. Learning to use one’s mind well

2. Less is more, depth over coverage

3. Goals apply to all students

4. Personalization

5. Student-as-worker, teacher-as-coach

6. Demonstration of mastery

7. A tone of decency and trust

8. Commitment to the entire school

9. Resources dedicated to teaching and learning

10. Democracy and equity

Charter schools are independent public schools that:

  • never charge tuition
  • don’t have special entry requirements
  • choose students through an enrollment lottery

The public charter school option has provided equity and equal access to other public educational opportunities for all families. The first charter public school was established in 1991 in Minnesota to allow students an opportunity to choose a different type of public school - currently there are 71 charter public schools in Massachusetts.

To learn more, please visit:

The Massachusetts Charter School Department of Education

The Massachusetts Charter Public School Association

The Coalition of Essential Schools

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Alongside the 10 Common Principles, Sizer School also utilizes our Sizer 6 or the Essential Six. This is a set of six community standards that Sizer School adheres to inside and outside of the classroom. These Sizer 6 Essentials can be found outlined all over the school as well as in the Student Handbook.