Section 2855 (4) of the NYS Charter Schools Act provides that parents (as well as any other individual) who believe that a charter school has violated a term of its charter or the law may complain formally to the school and seek relief. The law gives the power to hear those complaints to the school’s board of trustees in the first instance (though the board of trustees may delegate that power to, for example, the principal or a committee of the board or a neutral third-party). The school is required to provide you promptly with that complaint policy in writing upon request from you and that complaint policy should provide you with the details of how and to whom you should direct your complaint.
If, after making your complaint, you are unsatisfied with the school’s board of trustees’ determination and action (or after a reasonable period of time, the board or its designee does not respond to your complaint in writing—or does not respond within the time that the school provides in its formal complaint policy), you can make a formal complaint to the school's authorizer. Thereafter, if you are unsatisfied with the Authorizer's response, you can complain to the Board of Regents/State Education Department.
It is very important that before you use this formal complaint process (either with the school or afterwards with the school's authorizer) that you determine positively that your complaint involves a violation of the charter or law. If it does not, this process is not the appropriate avenue for you to seek a solution to your problem.
In addition to a formal complaint policy, many schools have more informal means of resolving issues that may involve your child. Where appropriate you may wish to use this more informal approach, which is likely to result in a resolution of the issue in a far more timely manner—and which is suited to dealing with issues that do not involve a violation of the charter or law. Even issues involving a violation of the law or charter may be able to resolved informally and you may wish to use this avenue before making a formal complaint (though the school cannot require you to do so and using the informal route the school may have does not prevent you later from using the formal complaint process).