Imagine Schools’ vision is for every student to reach his or her full potential and discover the pathways for life-long success.
As a national family of public charter school campuses, Imagine Schools partners with parents and guardians in the education of their children by providing high quality schools that prepare students for lives of leadership, accomplishment, and exemplary character.
Founded in 2004 by Dennis and Eileen Bakke, Imagine Schools is a full-service operator of public charter schools. Like all charter schools, Imagine charter schools are publicly funded while privately operated.
Imagine Schools operates 70 schools in 12 states and the District of Columbia. As a full-service charter school operator, Imagine is basically a multi-state “school district” educating approximately 38,000 students (about the same size as the Newark public school system, while larger than Cincinnati, Minneapolis, or Buffalo).
While charter schools have flexibility in choosing curriculum and developing innovative teaching practices, Imagine charter schools must test students and report results, just like the government-operated public schools, as required by federal and state laws. Sharing the same vision, local governing boards partner with Imagine Schools because of the expertise, quality, and programmatic variety.
As a member of the Imagine Schools’ family, schools share a common culture based on shared values and the Measures of Excellence. These elements are central to our approach in educating the whole child. While each school is uniquely tailored both in curriculum and structure, the integration of character development and academics sets Imagine campuses apart from other public schools.
We use five Measures of Excellence to evaluate the effectiveness of each Imagine charter school. The measures are academic growth, character development, economic sustainability, parent choice, and shared values. We annually report progress in each Measure for all campuses. Our sixth measure, school development, is used to gauge the overall growth of Imagine Schools.
Our work is guided by three shared values: integrity, justice, and fun. We apply “Joy at Work,” a unique organizational structure that puts teachers and school leaders squarely in charge of the decisions affecting the schools and students we serve.
We are excited to partner with parents, communities, and boards to deliver high quality education that prepares students for life-long success.
The Imagine Schools System
The Imagine Schools network of schools currently includes schools operated by two affiliated organizations: Imagine Schools Non-Profit, Inc. and Imagine Schools, Inc. Both Imagine Schools Non-Profit, Inc. and Imagine Schools, Inc. serve the exclusive purpose of educating children in grades PreK-12. Our goal is to transition the entire Imagine Schools network to non-profit status. To that end, the organizations plan for Imagine Schools Non-Profit, Inc. to acquire ownership of Imagine Schools, Inc., after which Imagine Schools, Inc. will be converted to a nonprofit corporation. Together, we are partnering with parents, guardians and communities across the nation to prepare their students for lives of leadership, accomplishment, and exemplary character.