Operations / Administration Chief Executive Officer
Chief Executive Officer
ABOUT ROCKY MOUNTAIN PREP
Rocky Mountain Prep (RMP) is a growing network of innovative public charter schools, serving students in pre-kindergarten through fifth grade in the Greater Denver Area, including the city of Aurora. RMP opened its first school in 2012 with 130 students, and has grown to four schools and ~1,900 scholars across two districts. We look forward to serving more scholars as our network expands.
Grounded in our culture of “rigor and love,” RMP schools manifest our founder’s deeply held belief in an educational “third way,” where access to excellence is equitable in all neighborhoods across the city, the potential of all scholars and adults is understood to be unlimited, and that this potential is unlocked not through tight control, but by holding a high bar while providing a truly safe and nurturing space where all of us assert independence, learn and grow.
Our focus on rigor and choices around a network-wide instructional approach to math have served our scholars well, and prepared them to outperform their district and state peers. And – with rigor comes revision. We have had to redouble our efforts to support consistently strong outcomes in English language acquisition, and have landed only recently on a pedagogy that promises to lift all of our readers across contexts and learning differences.
Our pursuit of excellence attracts attention in our communities. In a competitive, open-enrollment environment we are exceeding our enrollment targets, attracting families who put a premium on rigor, and share our PEAK values of Perseverance, Excellence, Adventure, and Kindness. We consistently receive high satisfaction ratings from the families of our scholars.
And of course, we center love – unapologetically. We know that to love is to honor, and that means we seek to understand our scholars’ histories, traditions, communities and families. In doing so, we create the conditions for belonging, and schools where our scholars can be who they are, lean into rigor, and optimize their true potential. We recognize and highly value the strengths and contributions of our families and seek to support their deep engagement and activism in our schools and in the community.
We are equally committed to creating the conditions for love and belonging for our RMP team members. We have built a strong adult culture and earned accolades for being one of Denver’s Top Places to Work three times. We attract top talent whom we grow and promote from within. Still, we have more work to do; that feeling of belonging is not experienced fully by our team members of color and some others in our adult community. While we recognize that statements and strategies are merely levers in what must ultimately become wholesale mindset and behavioral shifts, they also serve as a compass and signal our conviction. In that spirit, we have established the following diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI)-related goals and objectives:
|Key Measures of Success by EOY 2022||Key Strategies|
|1. Consistently score in the top 33% of organizations according to nationally-normed engagement surveys (Insight)
2. ≥40% of our team identify as people of color
3. ≥80% retention year over year with no gaps among sub-groups
4. Identify and develop at 4-8 internal candidates for leadership positions per year
|1. Codify vision & key behaviors for RMP culture
2. Critically examine all talent core practices to align to our vision of equity & inclusivity
3. Improve recruitment, selection, onboarding, and development practices to increase the diversity & effectiveness of our team
4. Cultivate distributed ownership / leadership of DEI for all teams
5. Strengthen whole-child supports
We are confident that as our adult culture grows increasingly equitable, so, too, will the performance in each of our schools. We will make the adaptive changes required to realize dramatic growth for our scholars and team in each community and context where our schools operate.
ABOUT THE FUTURE
Assured that the timing is right to make room for the influence and ideas of another strong and inspiring leader, founder and Chief Executive Officer James Cryan will transition out of the organization at the end of the 2020-2021 school year. While his absence will be felt deeply by the community, RMP stakeholders are confident that the future is bright, and that the best of RMP is yet to come. Harnessing our love and growth mindset, top talent, commitment to innovation, solid financial position, deeply appreciated philanthropic support, and engaged and diverse Board, RMP is poised to strengthen our capacity to provide high-quality education to children in the Denver metropolitan area.
ABOUT THE ROLE
Our new CEO will represent RMP in the larger political and fundraising communities, and hold the standard for quality and accountability across all aspects of the organization. As such, they will be inspiring, clear, direct and transparent in communicating expectations and roles, and provide thoughtful and consistent support and coaching to team members to help them achieve their potential. They will also foster a culture of collaboration and cohesiveness, striking a balance between autonomous decision-making and shared practices, to institutionalize common characteristics across schools while retaining each school’s distinctiveness, and creating space for creativity and continuous learning. Specifically, the CEO will:
Develop and champion a clear vision and strategy by:
- working with the Board and leadership team to further develop a vision for academic programming and related strategic initiatives, and adapt to internal and external changes as needed.
- widely and regularly championing and inspiring people with the organization’s vision, goals, plans, results, and success stories
Recruit, support, and retain a strong, diverse team by:
- promoting and modeling rigor, love and cultural competence;
- building a strong, cohesive culture of openness, transparency, fairness, and respect for all employees;
- recruiting high-performing, mission-aligned talent for all levels of the organization;
- implementing effective talent management strategies throughout the organization, including developing and operationalizing a path to advancement that is open, in both principle and practice, to all RMP team members;
- coaching and mentoring direct reports, ensuring the clarity and resources they need for success, and
- ensuring the organization is able to appropriately sustain and retain its people.
Drive effective execution and accountability for programmatic, operational, and financial results by:
- working with the Board of Directors to set clear, values-aligned academic, growth, operational, and financial goals;
- clarifying decision-making rights and processes;
- implementing effective accountability systems to assess and drive progress toward goals, key strategic priorities, and implementation plans;
- promoting the testing, piloting, and scaling of innovative solutions that drive student achievement and joy;
- ensuring operations and facilities are safe and support the academic program, and
- ensuring that RMP has a viable long-term financial plan and manages resources strategically.
Build a strong partnership with the Board of Directors by:
- engaging the Board collaboratively and productively, and promoting rigorous board-management discussion to solve key challenges and realize RMP’s mission and vision;
- communicating information transparently and in a timely manner, and
- working with the Board Chair and Governance Committee to recruit and train new Board members.
Develop strong external relationships and presence by:
- building community and supporting true partnership with key local leaders, government officials, school districts, authorizers, parents, and local organizations;
- promoting RMP’s brand through presentations, publications, and social media presence consistent with our mission, and
- in conjunction with the Board, nurturing existing funder relationships and leading all fundraising efforts.
You are a strong candidate to lead RMP if, above all, our model of rigor and love resonates with you, and your own professional practice reflects this orientation. You know that equity and excellence are synonymous, and that DEI is a way of being, not a checklist. Your “special sauce” is at the nexus of team and culture building and management, internal organizational leadership and external relations. You will also bring experience or demonstrated capacity:
- serving as a trusted member of an organization’s senior leadership team, most likely in the field of PreK-12 education;
- attracting, motivating and developing top talent, and fostering an inclusive and equitable culture by holding and articulating an inspiring vision;
- collaborating with culturally and socio-economically diverse families and communities to achieve meaningful engagement in education
- communicating effectively internally and externally to promote the vision of the organization;
- institutionalizing systems and processes that enable organizations to function efficiently and effectively at scale;
- serving as the external face of an organization, and cultivating and shepherding authentic, productive relationships in the funding, advocacy, policy, and education communities;
- partnering effectively with a board of directors;
- modeling self-awareness, humility, integrity and approachability, and
- demonstrating the confidence to identify, acknowledge and share challenges and mistakes without spin or jargon.
ABOUT THE REPORTING STRUCTURE
The CEO will report to the Board of Directors, and guide our Senior Leadership Team, comprising the Chief of Staff, Chief Schools Officer, Chief Operating Officer and Chief People & Program Officer.
If you are not already part of the vibrant Denver community, you should know that:
- Denver is a progressive city where education is central to the social justice movement and civic fabric;
- here, as across the country, the charter sector faces political challenges that are best navigated in close collaboration with the full set of actors in our dynamic education advocacy ecosystem, including district and community leaders;
- Denver has more days of sun every year than Miami Beach or San Diego;
- there are more than 5,000 acres of traditional parks and parkways, and 14,000 acres of mountain parks in and around Denver in which to enjoy that sun;
- our city is home to thousands of music festivals and concerts every year, as well as theaters, art galleries, museums, and the nation’s largest performing arts complex, and
- we’ve got abundant bike sharing and craft breweries – and all the fun that comes with them!
In other words, come for the kids, and stay for the lifestyle!
SALARY RANGE AND BENEFITS
Rocky Mountain Prep offers a competitive salary and comprehensive benefits, and we are committed to pay equity.
The review of applications will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled. For best consideration, please submit a cover letter and resume to email@example.com by December 1, 2020.
RMP is an equal opportunity employer. We seek applicants of diverse backgrounds and hire without regard to color, gender, religion, national origin, citizenship, disability, age, sexual orientation, or any other characteristic protected by law.