What is the Schoolcraft Learning Community?

Schoolcraft Learning Community is a charter school sponsored by the Volunteers of America. This innovative public school provides an experiential-based education for children in grades K-8, based on understanding and appreciating natural sciences, language, culture, values and creative arts.

What is a charter school?

A charter school is a publicly-funded school which operates under the direction of its own board consisting of parents, teachers and other community members. Although many local and state regulations are waived for charters, the charter school is held accountable to a greater degree than all other schools.

"The charter school movement represents what is best about American public education, a willingness to change, to be impatient, to demand excellence, and, at the same time, a deep, abiding commitment to the democratic principles that define public education."

~ U.S. Secretary of Education Richard Riley
For more about Charter Schools

  1. US Charter Schools
  2. Minnesota Association of Charter Schools
  3. Minnesota Department of Education
  4. Minnesota Charter Schools Law

How much does it cost?

Charter schools do not charge tuition.

If the emphasis is on outdoor education, sciences, culture and the arts, will my child receive adequate instruction in other important subjects such as math and reading?

Reading and math will be taught every day. The school's focus on the sciences, language and culture, and creative arts will enhance the instruction of all the traditional skill areas. The school's success will be measured by evaluating improvements in all subjects.

Are the teachers licensed?

Teachers are required to be licensed based on the same standards as other Minnesota public schools.

How will the classrooms be divided?

Students in grades 2-8 are in classrooms with two or three grade levels combined. (2/3, 4/5, 6/7/8) This allows peer mentoring to flourish. Kindergarten and 1st grades are stand-alone grade levels for developmental benefits.

Will special education be available?

Students will receive the services stipulated in their Individual Education Plan (IEP) from Schoolcraft's instructors and/or other contracted teachers as needed. Services will be coordinated by a licensed special education director.

Is transportation provided?

Schoolcraft contracts with School District 31 for transportation services. 

Will my child be able to participate in sports and other extracurricular activities available in District 31?

Students may participate in community based sports and activities, but are not allowed to participate in district level sports at this time. Discussions promoting open participation are ongoing with ISD #31.

Does a charter school skim off the highest achievers? Is it a "dumping ground" for those unable to succeed in the traditional school setting?

Recent studies of charter schools indicate that these schools don't attract just the "golden" students. They often serve a disproportionate number of students traditionally considered to be low-achieving or otherwise "at-risk." Many recent studies demonstrate that charter schools can successfully provide an atmosphere in which more than the average number of students thrive and achieve.

Does a charter school weaken an existing school district?

Charters can create dynamics that begin to give district schools a reason to change and improve - ultimately benefiting not just the students that attend charters, but all students in a district, region, or state. Schoolcraft believes that the goal of all schools, no matter whether charter, private, or district, is to work together to do the best that we can for the students that we serve.

How can I find out more about Schoolcraft Learning Community?
  1. Call us at 218-444-2102
  2. E-mail us at info@schoolcraft.org