Deciding whether to formally organize the teacher team

Some school leadership teams create formal organizations for themselves, such as workers’ cooperatives, partnerships, and Limited Liability Corporations (LLCs). These formally organized teams then arrange service contracts with a school board to run one or more schools. The school board pays these teams a fee (often in a lump sum) for their services.

Formally organized teams have other options as well. They could arrange a contract to run a department or program within one or multiple schools. They could also contract with a homeschool cooperative. There are many possibilities. A few teacher-powered teams have created separate nonprofits during the design phase in order to apply for and receive grants that allow them to create new teaching and learning resources or expand to serve more schools. These teams continue to maintain the nonprofit for this ongoing purpose, even after the school is open and running. Still other teams never formally organize any aspect of their teacher partnership. Use the resources below to decide which option will work best for your team.


Formally organized teacher-powered teams

EdVisions Cooperative

Website. Learn about EdVisions Cooperative, a professional association of teacher owners that contracts with school boards to supply learning programs and school management.

Options for formally organizing a team

Teachers as Owners: A Key to Revitalizing Public Education

Book. Edited by Edward J. Dirkswager, this book offers insights into teacher-powered teams’ ability to create formal organizations.

Worker Cooperatives in America

Book. Robert Jackall and Henry M. Levin address the history, dynamics, challenges, and potential of worker cooperatives.

YES!: When Workers are Owners

Magazine. This issue about worker cooperatives can be useful for teachers designing and running schools, particularly as they think about their organizational structure.

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