Research and Policy President
Our history leading to our future
The Colorado League of Charter Schools (referred herein as “the League”) is one of the oldest and most established charter school organizations (CSO) in the country. Established in 1994, the League was the third CSO to develop after the passage of the federal Charter Schools Act and formed just one year after the passage of the Colorado Charter Schools Act.
Over the years, the League has helped create one of the nation’s strongest charter public school laws—consistently ranked in the top 10 in the U.S.—paving the way for continued growth and evolution of quality education throughout Colorado. The League has played a critical role in molding the climate for new charter public schools and shaping the overall operating environment for established charter public schools, as well as providing insight and support to the state’s public-school landscape.
Today, the League has expanded from its advocacy roots and offers an array of services designed to support Colorado’s charter public schools from the moment they first open their doors throughout every stage of their life cycle. Our team has led efforts involving a number of strong partners to make significant headway in legislative changes to support the growth of the charter sector. Prior to COVID-19, the League’s work has resulted in:
- Average per pupil funding increasing by $1,827 per student from $6,652 to $8,479.
- All school districts with charter schools equitably sharing their mill levy override revenue with their authorized schools, and schools chartered by the Charter School Institute receiving $7M in equalization funding from the state.
- The Charter Capital Construction Fund increasing from $7M to ~$29M.
- Core charter autonomies maintained, state-mandated testing streamlined, and UIP reporting requirements for high-performing schools reduced.
Even in the new COVID-19 environment, the League is again poised to continue to build upon its strong history of bipartisan relationships and unwavering advocacy for school choice, the charter public school concept and most importantly, quality public education for all. The League has members from 90% of the 261 Colorado charter public schools, which in turn serve 125,000 students.
The League is a seeker and champion of both renown and innovative practices that support equitable student learning. Given the strong level of commitment to and experience within the education sector, many of its peers, including the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, look to the League to provide guidance and share expertise.
To support that end, the League is currently searching for an experienced, creative and committed leader to become its next President.
Essential Job Duties
The President is responsible for maximizing the effectiveness of the Colorado League of Charter Schools by serving its members through initiatives and service offerings that accelerate the charter school movement in Colorado. The President is the liaison to external stakeholders including funders, policymakers and education advocates in order to ensure Colorado retains its position as a national leader in charter school policy and sector relationships.
Specifically, the President has the following areas of focus:
Lead the redevelopment and execution of the organization’s vision, long-term strategic plan and annual goals.
- This major goal requires the President to:
- Design a meaningful organization chart and staffing plan
- Oversee and participate actively with the organization’s leadership team
- Identify annual organization-wide performance targets and oversee development of annual program goals.
- Ensure that League’s plans and programs are designed to provide access to high-quality charter public schools for those most at-risk and underserved by the overall system.
Oversee development of budgets that are achievable and lead to proper growth of the League and replenish our operating reserves.
- To accomplish the above requires the President to:
- Ensure that the budget is based on realistic assumptions, that it is aligned with the League’s strategic plan and annual goals, and then that the budget is achieved.
- Lead the development of a sustainable, diversified funding base for the League.
- Demonstrate responsible fiduciary and fiscal decision-making.
External Relations and Advocacy
Strengthen and advance our relationships with key funders, primary legislators and important stakeholders that advance our agenda.
Ensure that legislative funding of charter schools continues to repair the past educational underfunding and the effects of COVID-19.
- In addition to specific and targeted immediate meetings, the President is required to:
- Represent the organization before diverse audiences across the country.
- Direct effective communications, engagement strategies and relations with member schools, other organizations, policymakers, funders, researchers, the media, and the general public.
- Present and represent the League’s vision, values, priorities, strategic choices and points of view to internal and external stakeholders.
Supervision and Management
Re-image future work-space environments that optimize team function and minimize impacts from national or global events such as experienced from the COVID-19 virus.
- The work-space solution must still allow the President to:
- Oversee, manage, and mentor the organization’s Leadership Team.
- Supervise, coach and provide overall guidance to all those supervised. Specifically, ensure that those supervised know what is expected of them at work, that they receive on-going feedback about their work, and that their development is encouraged.
- The President should empower League staff, help them grow professionally, encourage them to find new solutions and offerings, and bring all staff together as a team, all the while helping them keep the League’s mission and vision at the forefront of their work.
Characteristics and Qualifications
As with all League employees, the President should be self-motivated, flexible, and service-oriented. Our ideal President will seamlessly fill the role of being a trusted and tested resource to League members, colleagues and partners. The League cares deeply about our vision: for all Colorado students to have access to high-quality, publicly-funded school options. The President should share this commitment and be willing to work with other sectors within the public-school community to reach this vision.
Additionally, this position will be best served by a progressive leader who has the following characteristics and qualifications:
Strengths and Talents
- Leader: Confident, respectful, steady and enthusiastic; respects and values multiple views and input; unites stafftoward a common vision; manages organizational growth while continuing commitment to organizational compassion, passion and empathy
- Communicator: An exceptional written and verbal communicator; a good listener; a clear, direct and succinct communicator; well-spoken and comfortable with public speaking
- Team builder: Open, supportive and empathetic; someone who is invested and has a track record of growing others; ability to build a high performing team
- Strategist: Visionary; a long-term strategic thinker; a problem-solver
- Unifier: The ability to synthesize multiple, competing agendas into a unified strategy; the ability to inspire and mobilize others
- Influencer: The ability to influence and persuade others
- Manager: Well organized; disciplined; comfortable with delegating
- Demonstrated leadership experience with specific experience leading a team to accomplish challenging goals
- Experience in developing and implementing a strategic vision for an organization and building buy-in to that vision with diverse stakeholders
- Experience in working with and cultivating relationships with major funders including foundations andcorporations
- Demonstrated experience in working with a governing board
- Leadership experience in managing financial operations, building revenue streams, and recruiting and leading a high performing staff
- Experience in creating public support of a cause or policy
- Experience in developing education or other public policy
Skills and Knowledge
- Understanding for public education as a whole and education policies since the inception of public charter schools in the early 1990’sand the current charter policy landscape
- Networking and consensus building skills
- A track record of credibility and relationships with diverse constituents across Colorado and nationally
- Understanding of how to deliver effective customer service; knowledge of how to build and support membershippreferred
- Human resources/supervisory skills
- A self-starter with a strong work ethic who is able and willing to work across the political spectrum, and who has the ability and willingness to make tough decisions
- Undergraduate degree required; advanced degree preferred.
- Knowledge of Colorado, its education and political systems, and leaders preferred.
Compensation and more
- Reports to: The Board of Directors
- Compensation: $130,000-$160,000 (commensurate with experience), accompanied with an excellent benefits package. Highlights of these benefits include:
- 5 PPO and HDHP health plans with the entire Employee Only Premium covered
- $75,000 Term Life Insurance paid by CLCS
- 18 PTO days in first year – earned monthly from the first month
- 20 paid holidays including 2 weeks off over winter break
- 50% Employer match up to 5% on 403b retirement plan
- Location: Denver, Colorado. Occasional travel across the state and nation is required.
- EEO Policy: The Colorado League of Charter Schools is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate based on race, religion, gender, age or sexual orientation. Diverse candidates are encouraged to apply.