What is a Charter School? That’s a really great question!

From the Minnesota Department of Education:

“The first charter schools in the nation opened in Minnesota in 1992. In Minnesota, charter schools are tuition-free and are governed by Minnesota Statutes, Chapter 124E. Charter schools offer a unique educational program for students and families seeking an alternative to traditional public schools. They must welcome and be open to all students. Charter schools are operated and governed by licensed teachers, parents and community members...”

Long story short:

Charter Schools exist to serve the purpose of innovation in education. Central Lakes Adventure School is a TUITION FREE, PUBLIC SCHOOL!

We are a CHOICE in a family’s education decision. Much like you choose your own dentist or doctor, or even where you shop, Charter Schools believe it is just as important to offer choice in education. Not every school fits every learner. This also means that no two Charter Schools are the same! There are over 180 Charter Schools in the state, and EVERY Charter School program is uniquely different in what it offers the student and their family.

So how is Central Lakes Adventure School unique?

Our program boasts hands-on, experiential learning through: Project, Field Experiences, Restorative Circle, and Service Learning. We want students to grow to be stewards of the environment, and value the impact of the footprint they leave on Mother Earth. We also grow learners to value and understand the practice of being a lifelong learner.

We think it is paramount to spend less time in the classroom sitting, and more time immersing ourselves in the “doing” of learning and experiencing the world around us firsthand.

How do Charter Schools operate differently?

Every Charter School maintains a contract with an Authorizer, and just like Charter Schools, each of the 13 Authorizers in the state of Minnesota fit uniquely with their portfolio of schools. The contract held with Osprey Wilds is what completes the relationship with the Minnesota Department of Education.

Our authorizer, Osprey Wilds’ 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.

It is important that the Authorizer and Charter School have a similar vision and mission to provide the best oversight possible for the educational program to succeed. Osprey Wilds and Central Lakes Adventure School have enjoyed a positive relationship for over 20 years!

Within the contract that Central Lakes Adventure School holds with Osprey Wilds is a Performance Framework that is evaluated annually. This extensive rubric measures health and success in academics, school operations, and financial management.

This contract ensures that Central Lakes Adventure School is working its hardest to provide the best possible experience for students and their families, and is supporting development of their staff and teachers. It also identifies areas where Osprey Wilds can offer resources and training to improve the performance of our school.