NACSA Leaders Program: How to Apply

How to Apply

The NACSA Leaders Program

Candidate Profile 

NACSA Leaders are a diverse group of charter school authorizing professionals. They include new leaders in the field as well as seasoned practitioners. They have worked in charter schools, districts, state agencies, and the private sector. 

NACSA Leaders grew up in families that struggled and families with privilege. They are first-generation college graduates and first-generation Americans. They hail from rural communities, urban communities, and everywhere in between. They bring a diversity of backgrounds and experiences that enrich each participant’s experience.

What NACSA Leaders share is a commitment to quality public education opportunities for all students, a belief that quality authorizing improves outcomes for students, and a desire to be more impactful leaders. 

We look for individuals who seek to advance the work of authorizing and who demonstrate both a track record of innovation and initiative as a leader. While we do not require applicants to hold a particular position in their authorizing office, strong candidates generally have significant people or program management responsibilities, influence in decision making, and opportunities to drive change in their offices. 

NACSA particularly seeks individuals who reflect the diversity and experiences of students in charter schools throughout the country. 

To be eligible to apply for the Leaders Program, you must: 

  • Currently work in a charter school authorizing office
  • Be committed to personal and professional growth
  • Be able to attend all Leaders Program sessions

Application Phases 

Our application process consists of three phases:  

Phase 1: Express interest in the program by submitting information about yourself and your office, your résumé, and a brief statement about why you want to be in the program. (Due – Monday, June 7 by 5:00pm CT)
Phase 2: Qualified candidates will be invited to share more about their experiences, personal values, and professional goals by submitting several written and video responses, as well as an any-format-goes response (e.g., audio, musical, visual, PowerPoint, written). (Invitations to Phase 2 sent by June 30. Submissions due Monday, July 26 by 5:00pm CT)
Phase 3: Candidates who advance are invited to participate in a virtual interview with NACSA staff and Leaders Program alumni.  

Individuals selected to participate in the Leaders Program will be notified by September 13, 2021.

Leaders Program Dates

Program dates are tentative and will be finalized by June 2021. We hope to implement a hybrid program (combining in-person and virtual). However, we are also planning for the possibility of a fully virtual program, and we are prepared to pivot as circumstances warrant.  

The location of the first in-person session will be determined by June 2021. Locations for subsequent in-person sessions will be determined later in 2021. 

Program Schedule – Hybrid Option

Pre-program Getting-to-Know-You Session – October 2021 (Virtual, 2-hour session)
Session 1 – Program Kick-off, December 2021 (Virtual, 3-hour session)
Session 2 – January 2022 (In-person, 2.5 days)
Session 3 – February 2022 (Virtual,  3-hour session)
Session 4 – March 2022 (Virtual,  3-hour session)
Session 5 – April 2022 (In-person,  2.5 days)
Session 6 – May 2022 (Virtual,  3-hour session)
Session 7 – June 2022 (Virtual,  3-hour session)
Session 8 – July 2022 (In-person,  2.5 days)
Session 9 – August 2022 (Virtual,  3-hour session)
Session 10 – September 2022 (Virtual,  3-hour session)
Session 11 – Final Program Session – October 2022 (In-person at NACSA Conference,  1.5 days) 

Program Schedule – Fully Virtual

Except for the final session, which will be held at the NACSA Leadership Conference Pre-program Getting-to-Know-You Session – October 2021 (Virtual, 2-hour session) 

Session 1 – Program Kick-off, December 2021 (Virtual, 3-hour session)
Session 2 – January 2022 (Virtual)
Session 3 – February 2022 (Virtual)
Session 4 – March 2022 (Virtual)
Session 5 – April 2022 (Virtual)
Session 6 – May 2022 (Virtual)
Session 7 – June 2022 (Virtual)
Session 8 – July 2022 (Virtual)
Session 9 – August 2022 (Virtual)
Session 10 – September 2022 (Virtual)
Session 11 – Final Program Session, October 2022 (In-person at NACSA Conference, 1.5 days)  

Schedule Details

Each month’s session is held over two days, e.g. Tuesday, January 11 and Thursday, January 13. 

Each day’s schedule is (all times CT): 

  • 10am-12pm: Full Group Session 
  • 12-3pm: Commitment of approximately 1 hour for independent, pair, or small group work 
  • 3-4pm: Full Group Session