Lisa Jarvi Nolan, Vice President / Chief of Staff
What I Do For Charter Schools
(How Charter Schools Will Know Me)
I provide support and training for Colorado charter public school leaders, operations teams, and governing boards. I also manage the League’s internal talent and assist in the creation and execution of the organization’s strategic plan.
On Charter Public Schools
I began my public education journey teaching Kindergarten and First Grade in traditional public schools. One year a colleague suggested that I apply to teach at a new charter public school (Wyatt-Edison Charter School in Denver). I did, and was grateful to be hired as a member of the school’s leadership team. Back then, I didn’t know what a charter public school was so I feel like my charter experience came about through a very fortunate accident. When I started teaching at Wyatt, I was immediately in love with the charter concept. I was given more freedom to truly be responsive to students. I could make decisions, adjustments and create programs at the classroom level that immediately impacted my students without wading through red tape at the district. In addition my colleagues were passionate and motivated. The overall culture was inspiring. Together we were doing what teachers get into the field of public education to do – we were visibly making a difference for students every day. It was fulfilling and rewarding.
When I was recruited by EdisonLearning to help start charter public schools across the country I jumped at the opportunity. I focused on recruiting teachers and leaders that shared my passion for providing a high-quality public education to all students, and especially those that were being underserved. Nationally, I was involved in the creation of 17 charter public schools. Here in Colorado I helped start Omar D. Blair School in Denver, and was a founding board member at two more charter public schools in Douglas County. Prior to joining the League I served as Interim Executive Director of SkyView Academy, a PreK-12 charter public school in Highlands Ranch.
I’ve also been involved as a consultant in a variety of special projects to help charters gain access to food service, local bond dollars and high-quality special education services. My consulting experience also includes managing local and state grant and evaluation programs; specifically with the National School Lunch Program, Colorado Department of Education, Denver Public Schools, Colorado League of Charter Schools, Gates Foundation, Piton Foundation, and Donnell-Kay Foundation.
I have supported the development of governing boards, foundations, and building corporations, start-up application and related advocacy efforts, financial planning, facility acquisition/renovation, and all additional start-up operations. I have also served in a volunteer capacity on charter public school governing boards, building corporations, and foundations as well as local education advocacy committees.
I received a Bachelor's Degree from Colorado State University in Human Development and Family Studies and a Master's Degree from the University of Colorado in Early Childhood Special Education. I began my career teaching regular and special education, then spent four years traveling the country as a national trainer, start-up manager, and teacher/principal recruiter for EdisonLearning, a national Charter Management Organization. In the decade or so since, I have enjoyed each of the valuable consulting projects I have been a part of, and will continue to enjoy being part of the great teams of people that are making school reform and quality choices a reality for kids.
303-989-5356, ext. 120 | Email Lisa