The application process begins with the submission of a prospectus, a short, (no longer than twenty pages) description of the proposed school. A prospectus must be received by the Office no later than the close of business (4:00 p.m.) on the last business day in February. Prospectuses received after the specified due date and time will not be considered and will be returned to the applicant. It is important within the prospectus to capture the philosophy around which the school will be developed, the mission of the school, and the reason the community needs the school. The prospectus provides a snapshot of the proposed school, its organizers, curricular focus, instructional methodology, governance, and financial capacity.
The information provided by the Prospectus allows the Office to determine if the school has the potential to make a positive educational difference with urban students, is financially sound, and fits with the University's mission. Requirements for the submission of a prospectus are provided at Prospectus Requirements. Upon receipt of the prospectus, the Office will review and evaluate the proposal in terms of: 1) organizational capacity to develop and sustain a school over time, 2) potential for the program to contribute to educational reform, 3) soundness of the proposal plan, 4) strength of the business plan and 5) overall potential of the educational program. Specific information can be found in the Prospectus Review Guide. Those organizations, groups, or individuals whose prospectuses are deemed to meet the established criteria will be notified by the last business day of March and are then permitted to submit a full application to the Office.