Forest Charter School opened its doors in fall of 2002 upon the invitation of then sponsoring district, Twin Ridges Elementary School District. In July 2007 Forest Charter left Twin Ridges and, along with five other charters, joined together under the sponsorship of Nevada County Superintendent of Schools (NCSoS), an innovative leader in the charter school movement. These charters forged a unique concept of a charter cooperative, creating the Nevada County Charter Cooperative (NCCC).
Forest Charter School entered the charter school arena with a new, innovative, alternative model of education called Personalized Learning. Personalized Learning has its roots in the homeschool movement, where, for decades, parents have privately tailored learning for their children according to their individual needs and preferences. Prior to the 1990s in California, parents had few choices for their children’s education: the public school system, a private school, or private homeschooling. In 1992, California’s elected officials enacted California’s Charter School Act, which established public charter schools as an option for parents, students, teachers, and community members to design self-governing schools within the public school system to meet the needs of their community. Charter schools were envisioned to provide new, better, and more flexible and innovative opportunities for California students within the public school system.
As the charter school movement grew in California, so also evolved a partnership between members of the private homeschool community and public educators who saw great educational potential and value in learning opportunities beyond the classroom. The flexibility and innovation provided through Charter School law, teachers, parents, students, and administrators have successfully demonstrated that an effective learning "classroom" goes well beyond the walls of a standard public school building. The "hybrid" or "multi-strand" approach of the Personalized Learning model enables students to pursue learning choices that optimize their learning potential according to their individual needs.