The Tennessee Charter School Center (TCSC), as it is known today, is the merged product and evolved impact of two of Tennessee’s previous charter school support organizations. Since 2013, TCSC has served as the primary charter support organization to the growing charter sector in Tennessee, but the work has actually been happening for much longer.
The Tennessee Charter Schools Association (TCSA) was established to focus efforts and resources on creating a local and statewide policy environment that enables the creation and growth of high-quality public charter schools. The Association was instrumental in helping to get a charter law passed in 2002 and played a key role in enacting significant improvements to the law over the past decade.
Inspired by the success of high-quality public charter schools in other parts of the country, the Tennessee Charter School Incubator (TCSI) was launched and modeled after the New York City Charter Center and New Schools for New Orleans. The work of the Incubator centered on systematically identifying and training new charter leaders and managing school launch and early support activities.
The Tennessee Charter School Incubator and the Tennessee Charter Schools Association announced the formation of the Tennessee Charter School Center in 2013. This new organization merges the resources and functions of both groups and leverages the strengths of both organizations (charter school incubation and support and policy and advocacy) to respond to the strong demand for high-quality public charter schools across the state. Establishing an entity that can provide ongoing, comprehensive support to the growing charter sector in Tennessee while also creating a unified voice among charter organizations is a primary focus of the Center as it is known today.