IDEA Public Charter Schools: Mission, Values, and How to Apply

This post is brought to you by IDEA Public Schools.

San Antonio has a thriving education system with a wide range of school choice options for families. One public charter school that often grabs parents’ attention is the IDEA (Individuals Dedicated to Excellence and Achievement) Public Charter School. You have likely seen their advertising around town but may not be familiar with all the great things the school has to offer!

IDEA schools are unique and centered around the mission of sending 100% of their students (whom they refer to as scholars) to college. This message is built into their curriculum from K–12, and starting in kindergarten students will begin talking about and learning about the benefits a college education can provide. IDEA markets that every student, teacher, and staff member uses the school’s core values to guide actions and decisions. These values drive the school’s mission of college acceptance and academic excellence.

IDEA was created in Donna, Texas, as an after-school program meant to combat the low academic achievement of the community. After achieving amazing success with the students in Donna, the school began its expansion process across the Rio Grande Valley in Texas and now has schools in Texas, Louisiana, and Florida. Since 2000, IDEA Public Schools have grown from a single small school with 150 students to the fastest-growing network of tuition-free, Pre-K–12 public charter schools in the United States. Since experiencing initial success with helping students at their flagship campus, achieving academic excellence continues to be a core value of the school. Among their other core values are acting with integrity, building team and family, delivering results, and bringing joy to everyone in the community.

One of the school’s highest priorities is to serve a low-income population at each of its campuses nationwide. They also promote diversity through their enrollment process by not limiting or excluding students based on race or economic profile. In fact, ensuring equity is one of the core values that drives every IDEA campus. Enrollment for the 2023–2024 school year is currently open, and an application can be completed online. Like any traditional public school, IDEA is a publicly-funded school and does not require families to pay tuition. Prospective students are not required to take an entrance exam or meet any kind of eligibility to enroll.

If you are interested in applying & want to be part of the lottery happening 2/18, submit your application by midnight on February 17, 2023.  Missed that deadline but want to still apply?  Good news: Families are still able to apply for the 23/24 school year post-Lottery as well!

If your child is selected through the lottery, you’ll receive a notification and can log in online to easily accept your child’s seat. IDEA schools offer an onboarding process where you’ll get to know your child’s principal and teachers, meet fellow families, tour the school facilities, ask questions, and become part of the community through a variety of in-person events. Their onboarding and admission process certainly lines up with the core values of building team and family, and bringing joy!

Alamo City Moms
Alamo City Moms is written by a collaborative and diverse group of mothers. We strive to provide moms with relevant, timely and fun information about all things mom here in the greater San Antonio area.