Frequently Asked Questions
What are charter schools?
Charter schools are publicly funded, independently operated schools that are allowed to operate with more autonomy than traditional public schools in exchange for increased accountability. Every charter school has an authorizer which, subject to state law, is responsible for holding charter schools accountable for compliance with their operating agreements (“charters”)
Like all public schools, charter schools are:
- Tuition-free and open-enrollment
- Non-sectarian and non-discriminatory
- Funded primarily through a combination of federal, state and local tax dollars
- Held to state and federal academic standards
Are all Green Dot schools charter schools?
Yes, all Green Dot schools are publicly funded and free to attend.
What is Green Dot?
Green Dot is an independent non-profit organization that operates 18 charter schools in Los Angeles. Each of our schools is authorized by Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) and managed by an independent Board of Directors who serve in a voluntary capacity, an experienced education and management team, and school site councils made up of staff, students, parents and community members. Green Dot operates both Independent charter schools and Turnaround charter schools. A Turnaround charter school is one in which Green Dot assumes operational control of a persistently low-performing district school in order to dramatically improve student experience and outcomes.
What does Ànimo mean?
Ànimo is a Spanish word that means "vigor, mind, spirit, valor, and the courage to overcome odds."
Are there admissions requirements at Green Dot schools?
No, Green Dot schools are open to all students, space permitting.
Green Dot admits students entering the sixth or nine grades through a public random drawing. All other grade levels are accepted from each school’s respective waitlist. Depending on the campus, priority in the sixth and ninth grade lotteries may be given to siblings, founding families and/or to families living within the attendance area
How can I enroll my child at a Green Dot school?
Please visit the Enroll section of our website for more information on how to enroll in Green Dot schools.
Do Green Dot campuses look like traditional school campuses?
All Green Dot schools are located in permanent facilities after three years of operation. Under state law, school districts are required to provide adequate and equivalent facilities to charter public schools, but districts vary in their compliance with this law. Green Dot Turnaround schools are located on traditional public school facilities. Our Independent charters secure facilities through district co-locations, state financing and, if necessary, philanthropy.
Are parents required to volunteer?
Parental involvement is an important component of student success. Green Dot parents are required to volunteer at their child’s school. However, Green Dot recognizes that many parents work fulltime and cannot easily fulfill this obligation. We work with families on an individual basis to develop alternative ways to support their children. No student would ever lose his or her place at a school based on a parent's volunteer hours.
What is Green Dot’s educational philosophy?
Green Dot schools prepare all students for college, leadership and life in a culture of high expectations.
What programs does Green Dot offer for students with special needs?
Green Dot schools are committed to serving all students, including those with special needs. In fact, because charter schools have more flexibility than traditional public schools, Green Dot is able to provide innovative, high quality educational services to students with special needs. Educational programs are tailored to a student's individual needs and we partner with the district to provide additional services not available at the individual charter school site. Ultimately, in charter schools and other public schools, the student's parents and representatives (the IEP team) make the final determination of the best option for that student.
Is Green Dot staff unionized?
Yes. Green Dot’s teachers and classified staff are unionized. The Green Dot teachers’ union, Asociacion de Maestros Unidos (AMU), is an independent chapter of the California Teachers Association (CTA) that has negotiated a reform contract aligned with Green Dot’s mission and focused on what’s good for students. Our classified staff keeps Green Dot campuses safe, clean and orderly for students, staff and parents. They are represented by the Ánimo Classified Employees Association (ACEA).