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Authorizing Specialist - Academics

Job title: Authorizing Specialist – Academics

Reports to: Director of Charter School Authorizing

Classification: Regular full-time exempt

Direct reports: None

Osprey Wilds (ospreywilds.org) is the largest authorizer of charter schools in Minnesota. The organization’s charter school vision is to authorize a portfolio of high-performing charter schools that instill a connection and commitment to the environment in their school communities, while working towards a healthy planet where all people live in balance with the Earth. Through its Charter School Division (CSD), located in Minneapolis, OW authorizes a diverse portfolio of 34 charter schools throughout Minnesota serving approximately 9,000 students.

Position Purpose

The primary role of the Authorizing Specialist – Academics is to work with the Charter School Division (CSD) team to conduct oversight and evaluation of authorized schools. This position takes the lead role on key elements of school performance evaluation and oversight particularly in the area of school academic performance.

  • School Academic Data Management and Analysis
    • Collect academic data from schools, the MDE Report Card, and through MDE public data requests annually to facilitate academic evaluations.
    • Maintain and update the OW Access database annually with school academic data collected from schools and through MDE public data requests.
    • Evaluate the academic performance of authorized schools, including:
      • Complete annual Academic Performance Evaluation Reports, including a detailed academic data profile and an academic performance evaluation;
      • Conduct other evaluation and monitoring activities as necessary (including in-person and virtual site visits);
      • Implement and oversee a school intervention protocol, and monitor the execution of school improvement plans as it relates to academic performance;
      • Work with schools to develop and update contractual goals for academic performance.
  • Ensure schools implement teacher performance evaluations consistent with state requirements.
  • Evaluate and revise CSD policies and procedures that govern the CSD obligation to oversee the academic performance of authorized schools.
  • Participate in coordinating charter school training and support activities including annual leaders retreat, development of monthly newsletters and other school communications, and other school outreach and gatherings.
  • Engage in ongoing professional development to advance skills and understanding in the area of charter school authorizing.
  • Promote sharing of effective practices among authorized schools.
  • Assist the Director of Charter School Authorizing on other projects as requested.
  • At least three years experience working in or with public schools in Minnesota or elsewhere, and/or a teaching license from Minnesota or elsewhere
  • Expertise with school academic performance measures including but not limited to MCAs, WIDA ACCESS, and one or more nationally normed assessment (e.g. NWEA-MAP, FastBridge, Renaissance Star, etc.)
  • Excellent computer skills, including experience managing databases and document sharing platforms.
  • Strong organizational and analytical skills and attention to detail.
  • Access to a vehicle and ability to drive.
  • Demonstrated connection and commitment to the environment.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of and experience in instruction, curriculum design, teacher evaluation, and provision of educational services to special populations of students including but not limited to English Learners and students with IEPs.
  • Ability to work effectively with individuals from diverse communities and cultures.
  • Excellent written communication skills.
  • Bachelor’s degree in a related field.
  • Demonstrated ability to work both independently and collaboratively.
  • Ability to manage multiple priorities on an ongoing basis.
  • Sense of humor.

This position is remote but the candidate must live in or be willing to relocate to Minnesota in order to conduct in-person site visits and board observations. The person in this position will work independently much of the time and will participate in at least two weekly virtual staff meetings with 4-5 team members and a 30-minute one-on-one check-in with the Director of Charter School Authorizing. Much of the work is computer-based. School visits happen on average 2-4 times per month and include both visits during the school day and evening board meetings. Site visits require travel and include overnight stays on occasion. Some weekend time may be required very occasionally. Work is cyclical requiring more hours during certain times throughout the year.

  • $60,000 (for the sake of pay equity and transparency this is non-negotiable)
  • Benefits package including medical and dental insurance and retirement contribution after two months
  • 15 days of PTO plus 10 floating holidays of your choice

Send a letter of interest, resume, and list of three references to:

Erin Anderson, Director of Charter School Authorizing


This position will remain open until filled and until a diverse and qualified pool of candidates is identified.

OW is an equal opportunity employer. We are committed to building a diverse staff with expertise and interest in working with our unique portfolio of schools. OW strongly encourages applications from candidates of all backgrounds, particularly those that are representative of the populations served by our portfolio of schools.

Education Director

Job title: Education Director
Reports to: Executive Director
Department: Educational Program
Job Location: Sandstone, Minnesota
Preferred starting date (flexible): June 1, 2021, or later
Job Type: Full-time/regular, salaried

Position open until filled. Preference is given to applications received by April 12, 2021. 

The purpose of this position is to provide leadership, management and execution of the highest quality environmental education programming for a wide variety of audiences. Programs include residential, day-use and outreach K-12, virtual, college, adult, community and senior programs, youth and family camps and retreats/conference groups. As a senior-level administrator, this position assists the Executive Director and collaborates with the Operations Director in leadership of Osprey Wilds.

Reports to Executive Director: 

  • Development Director 
  • Operations Director  
  • Education Director 
  • Director of Charter School Authorizing 

Reports to Education Director: 

  • Reservations Coordinator 
  • Fellowship Coordinator 
  • Wildlife Coordinator
  • Minimum Level Education: Master’s Degree
  • Preferred: K-12 Science Licensure and K-12 classroom teaching experience
  • Demonstrated excellent written and verbal communications skills, including curriculum and public presentations.
  • Demonstrated commitment to excellence in environmental education.
  • Demonstrated commitment to educational equity, inclusion, and justice.
  • Demonstrated leadership and management of teams in a professional setting.
  • Excellent problem-solving, decision-making and prioritization skills.
  • Good computer skills, including Google Suite, Zoom and Microsoft Office. 
  • Human resource management skills and experience, including organizational development, Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (JEDI), performance evaluations, goal setting, training and development, motivating, team building, hiring, and discipline.
  • Ability to manage programs within budget, read financial statements and use information to guide decision-making.
  • Experience with risk management and emergency procedures
  • First Aid and CPR certification required, additional certifications preferred
  • Favorable background screening required
  • Driver’s license and ability to drive all types of vehicles, including 15 passenger vans with trailers

Program Management and Administration (30%)

  • Direct all aspects of Osprey Wilds K-12, outreach, youth camp, family camp, & Road Scholar® programs, maintaining responsibility for appropriate, safe, and effective operations
  • Maintain oversight of programs including scheduling, staffing, facilities, equipment, etc.
  • Work collaboratively with other center department supervisors to ensure positive customer experiences while also enabling productive staff functioning in all departments
  • Design, lead and support the professional development of Osprey Wilds educational program staff
  • Lead and conduct the education department’s recruitment of staff, hiring, retention, and employee performance evaluations

Program Development, Marketing and Partnerships (30%)

  • Seek, maintain & strengthen relationships with leaders of k-12 school clients
  • Secure school attendance through retention of existing clients and recruitment of new schools
  • Support the center’s executive, communication and development functions
  • Assist with funding opportunities for programs, including grants and donations
  • Work with Leadership Team and Marketing Coordinator for the effective execution of Osprey Wilds marketing strategies and activities, with focus toward increasing enrollment
  • Assist in strategic and long-term planning for all Osprey Wilds programs
  • Represent Osprey Wilds with a wide variety of local, regional and national professional organizations appropriate to the Osprey Wilds mission
  • Review scholarship requests and follow up on funder requirements
  • Support communication efforts, including but not limited to writing and/or editing of center literature, marketing and related efforts
  • Seek out, develop and implement new educational opportunities and programs

Risk Management (10%)

  • Ensure Osprey Wilds meets all local, state, and federal regulations for safety in the programs, including COVID-19 Preparedness
  • Direct and oversee complete and timely safety practices for all Osprey wilds activities and facilities including policy, safety and security training for program staff
  • Review programs and facilities regularly for safety and security compliance.
  • Document all safety inspections, incidents, etc. as needed on a timely basis

Educational Vision and Leadership (10%)

  • Lead entire Osprey Wilds educational program staff
  •  Lead the design process for, implement, and evaluate organization-wide educational goals, both short and long term, to position Osprey Wilds at the leading and growing edge of environmental education
  • Lead, create and implement successful tactics to achieve assigned objectives of the organizational strategic plan

Financial and Business Management (5%)

  • Develop and manage operating expense budgets for education programs under jurisdiction
  • Assist in development of revenue budget and fee setting for programs, including appropriate scoping of new and existing programs
  • Assist in development and execution of annual budget
  • Ensure cost-effective, high value, and efficient use of financial resources in program delivery

Curriculum and Instructional Design Management (5%)

  • Ensure that program design and implementation remain clearly aligned to the center’s mission, goals and strategic advancement efforts
  • Review and adjust curriculum, resources and staff development in response to changing trends in the industry

Evaluation (5%)

  • Manage re-accreditation process and evaluate program based on accreditation rubric.
  • Manage design and implementation of all program-based evaluation activities
  • Monitor quality of education delivery, formally and informally through varieties of methods

Teaching (5%)

  • Periodically teach Osprey Wilds classes
  • Maintain working knowledge of all Osprey Wilds programs & classes
  • Create a working environment that promotes job satisfaction and growth for all employees. Work with employee concerns in a fair manner within policy guidelines.
  • Enforce all Osprey Wilds policies in a fair, consistent manner
  • Effectively solve facility and property needs relational to customer experience on a timely basis in collaboration with facilities staff.
  • Maintain programs in a manner that ensures safety to staff and students at all times.
  • Address critical issues on a 24/7 basis and respond as needed.
  • Anticipate potential concerns in all areas of the business. Proactively plan to prevent concerns or issues.
  • This position is limited by all Osprey Wilds policies and local, state, and federal laws, rules and regulations
  • This position must obtain Executive Director approval for spending beyond the planned budget and for any capital spending
  • This position must obtain Executive Director approval for addition of any new programs, curriculums, and initiatives
  • This position has authority for all HR activities and decisions within the educational program

This position has authority for all purchases within approved budget

  • This position is accountable for the successful and timely execution of programs, policies, and procedures in accordance with the Osprey Wilds’ mission statement and business needs
  • This position is accountable for annual revenues and expenditures of approximately $800,000
  • This position is accountable for the actions and performance of 11 staff

Below is an outline the working contacts the Education Director will have within the organization.

Position (Frequency) – Purpose

  • Executive Director (Weekly):  All activities
  • Operations Director (Daily – Weekly): HR, work direction, finances 
  • Office Staff (Daily): Work direction
  • Facilities Staff (Weekly): Work direction
  • Educational Program Staff (Daily): All activities
  • Fellows Staff (Daily): Work direction
  • Development Director (Periodically): Fundraising, program development
  • Food Service Staff (Weekly): Work direction
  • Clients (Daily): Quality control, marketing, relationship building
  • Marketing & Communications Coordinator (Weekly): Work direction
  • Professional Associations (As needed): Marketing, professional development, other
  • Board Committees (Monthly plus): Board meetings, operational updates, other 
  • Board of Directors (6x/year plus): Board meetings, other business
  • Employment at Osprey Wilds is “At Will” and is not a contract.
  • Employment is conditional until acceptance of a favorable background screening.
  • This position will require a minimum of 40 hours per week with a flexible work schedule, including evenings and weekends, to fulfill business needs. Full-time attendance “on campus” is a normal expectation when not off-campus for business purposes, except for remote-working during COVID-19.
  • This position will work outdoors in all types of weather conditions.
  • This position requires work at heights of up to 40 feet.
  • This position requires the ability to swim while wearing a PFD and adequately facilitate basic water rescue techniques.
  • This position prefers competence in outdoor skills, including orienteering, canoeing, backpacking, Leave No Trace, camping, rock climbing, and ropes course management.
  • This position requires occasional overnight, multi-day travel.
  • This position requires regular and repetitive tasks related to computer and office work.
  • This position requires a valid Class D driver’s license with a favorable driving record.
  • This position requires physical exertion; occasional lifting of up to 50 lbs.
  • This position requires the ability to travel under his/her own power, for hours at a time, through the terrain of the entire Osprey Wilds property in all types of Minnesota weather year-round.
  • Starting Annual Salary of $45,000
  • Eligible for Health Care and Simple IRA through Osprey Wilds. We currently offer health care coverage through Health Partners with a $3,000 individual deductible and $6,000 family deductible and contribute $625 annually into your HSA to be used towards your deductible.
  • We match your Simple IRA up to 3% of your annual earnings.
  • 10 Annual Floating Holidays & 120 Hours PTO Annually beginning rate
  • Professional Development & Training Opportunities

TO APPLY: Send cover letter, resume, and three references to Bryan Wood, Executive Director at wood@ospreywilds.org

Farm Fellow

Osprey Wilds is a private, 501(c)(3) non-profit environmental learning center near Sandstone, MN that provides outdoor educational opportunities to diverse audiences in an intimate setting. Gain experience on our expanding Trapp Farm as we grow produce and raise pastured animals in what will be our first season of production! Grow high-quality, nutrient-dense food while stewarding the land and adding to your farming skills. You will work with our farm manager, operations director, volunteers and other workers while doing a wide variety of farm tasks.

  • Fieldwork (soil prep, planting, cultivation, harvest)
  • Processing (washing, packing, delivery)
  • Animal care (observation, paddock moves, feeding, loading)
  • Farm maintenance, cleaning, and organizing
  • Farm infrastructure projects
  • Record keeping
  • Farm tours for donors and participants
  • Communal housekeeping duties for onsite housing
  • 21 years of age or older at the time of employment
  • Ability to commit to a full growing season, from May through November 2021, and live on site
  • Self-Motivated
  • Some experience in small scale intensive organic vegetable farming is a plus
  • Ability to do physical work under varying weather conditions
  • Ability to lift 25+ lbs
  • Ability to work both independently and as a part of a team
  • Attention to detail and pride in a job well done
  • Good communication skills
  • Good customer service skills
  • A valid driver’s license
  • Positive attitude
  • No drama
  • Respectful and builds community with others while living in shared quarters
  • Valid First Aid/CPR/AED certification is a plus!m
  • Work outside in a beautiful setting: 780 acres with coniferous and hardwood forests, creek, prairies, wetlands, farmland, and a lake with a dock and beach
  • $360/month stipend
  • Onsite housing that with access to high-speed internet, kitchen, and laundry facilities
  • Meals during the work week/when groups are present
  • Eight days off each month, plus 6 additional days of paid sick leave/PTO

You will get an individual room at the recently remodeled staff house, which is located on a separate part of the property from the office.

The staff house is a two-story building with 8 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, living room with fireplace, dining area, communal full kitchen, and basement. Other amenities include lakeshore access and view of Grindstone Lake, outdoor fire pit,  washer and dryer, wireless Internet access, and parking.


Position Dates:

This fellowship can begin as early as May 3, 2021, and end as late as November 19, 2021 (start date is subject to adaptation to accommodate CDC and Minnesota Department of Health guidelines, and is somewhat flexible)

There is one position available. Applications will be accepted until the position is filled.

To apply, please send your cover letter (including your available start and end dates), resume, and three references to:

Jill Rudolph, Operations Director

Email: rudolph@ospreywilds.org  |  Phone: (320) 245-2648 ext. 101