School choice in Maryland

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School choice refers to the educational alternatives available to parents who do not wish to send their children to the local district public school to which they are assigned. Public school choice options include open enrollment policies, magnet schools and charter schools. Other options include traditional school vouchers, scholarship tax credits, personal tax credits and deductions and Education Savings Accounts (ESAs), which allow parents to receive public funds directly for educational expenses.[1][2]

School choice options in Maryland include: charter schools and supplemental online learning programs. In addition, about 14.17 percent of school age children in the state attended private schools in the 2011-12 academic year, and an estimated 2.67 percent were homeschooled in 2012-13.

Educational choice options

See also: Number of schools by school type in the U.S.

Charter schools

According to the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, there were 52 charter schools operating in Maryland in the 2012-13 academic year. During that time, charter schools enrolled 19,705 students.[3][4]

Charter school authorizers are, according to the National Association of Charter School Authorizers (NACSA), the organizations "designated to approve, monitor, renew, and, if necessary, close charter schools." As of June 2014, the following organizations were listed by NACSA as charter school authorizers in Maryland:[5]

Maryland charter school authorizers
Organization Authorizer type Number of schools overseen
Anne Arundel County Public Schools Local education agency 1
Baltimore City Public Schools Local education agency 33
Baltimore County Charter Schools Local education agency 1
Frederick County Public Schools Local education agency 2
Prince George's County Public Schools Local education agency 8
St. Mary's County Public Schools Local education agency 1
Note: If the total number of charter schools accounted for in this table differs from the total number listed elsewhere on this page, the discrepancy owes to differing calculation methods and data sources.
Source: National Association of Charter School Authorizers, "Maryland Charter Authorizers," accessed June 18, 2014

School vouchers and tax credits

Maine offers neither school vouchers nor school choice tax incentives.[6]

Online learning

According to Keeping Pace with K-12 Online and Blended Learning, there are no fully virtual schools in Maryland. The Maryland Virtual School, the state-led online learning program, provides supplemental online courses for high school credit and High School Assessment courses and resources. State law prohibits online charter schools.[7]

Private schools

In the 2011-12 school year, 121,063 students, or 14.17 percent of school age children, were enrolled in 668 private schools. Maryland ranks seventh highest in the nation in private school attendance.[8]

Public school open enrollment

According to the Education Commission of the States, Maryland has no open enrollment policies.[9]


In Maryland in 2012-2013 an estimated 26,104 students, or 2.67 percent of the total student-aged population, were homeschooled.[10]

A summary of the state's laws relating to homeschooling can be accessed here.

School choice ballot measures

See also: School choice on the ballot and List of Maryland ballot measures

Ballotpedia staff have tracked no statewide ballot measures relating to school choice in Maryland.

Recent news

This section displays the most recent stories in a Google news search for the term "Maryland + Education + Choice"

All stories may not be relevant to this page due to the nature of the search engine.

Maryland School Choice News Feed

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See also