Faculty Job Positions for 2015-2016

Alzar School | 12.12.14

The Alzar School is pleased to announce the following positions for the 2015-2016 school year.  Now in our third year of life-changing semester programs, we know that having a fantastic faculty team is essential.  This document will automatically update if we add any additional positions, so please check back here.

For 2015-2016, we are looking for:

  • 3 teaching fellows for each of the Fall 2015 and Spring 2016 semesters (6 total openings)
  • 1 Advanced Mathematics & Physics Teacher
  • 1 Humanities Teacher

Candidates applying for teaching positions should have previous classroom experience and a number of years working professionally.  This is a paid, annual position with the opportunity for contract extensions each year.  The teaching fellowship position is ideal for emerging professionals looking to gain knowledge, skills, and experience that would qualify them for future teaching positions either at the Alzar School or similar programs.  The teaching fellowship, which is for one semester only, is an unpaid fellowship, although we do provide room and board.

Information for all positions:

State/country/province of primary work location.  Idaho & Chile

Brief overview of organization.

The Alzar School is a semester school for students in 10th and 11th grades.  Students are highly motivated teenagers who want to make a difference in the world.  The Alzar School’s campus is in Cascade, Idaho, but the teaching fellowship also includes a 5- to 6-week expedition to Chile.  The school uses outdoor adventure and international travel to challenge students.  Motivated, fun students invest one semester of their high school career at the school.

Position qualifications.

All candidates should be passionate about education, teaching, and learning.  We are a community of learners.

The Alzar School spends a significant portion of its time in the wilderness and front-country for adventure programming.  The teaching fellow is expected to be a competent outdoor leader with the skills to respond to various situations.  He/she should be an expert in at least one sport/activity and be proficient in 1-2 other sports/activities.  Most importantly, we are looking for highly skilled whitewater kayak/raft instructors and backpacking trip leaders.  Additional skills in other sports (such as skiing, surfing, mountain biking, fly fishing, etc are a plus).

Candidates should possess:

  1. Knowledge of contemporary outdoor programming methods and practices.
  2. The physical ability to perform strenuous outdoor recreational activities in remote and rugged mountains or water based environments.
  3. Required base certifications:
    1. For Teaching Fellows: BLS for the Professional Rescuer or other CPR/AED certification
    2. For Teachers: Teaching Certificate (or advanced degree or willingness to pursue alternative certification process prior to start date), Wilderness First Responder
  4. Multiple other outdoor leadership, medical, and professional certifications to include as many of the following as possible:
    1. American Canoe Association Instructor or Instructor Trainer
    2. Swiftwater Rescue Technician (Advanced)
    3. American Mountain Guides Association Single Pitch Instructor
    4. Professional Ski Instructor Association Certification
    5. Leave No Trace Educator
    6. Commercial Drivers License

Traits and Qualities

Candidates should be dynamic, engaging, and self-motivated people who will work to motivate, inspire, and lead students.  He/she must be effective at working independently and in collaboration with other staff.  They should have the ability to:

  1. Spend and enjoy extended periods of time with youth in a variety of settings.
  2. Self-manage.
  3. Prioritize, plan and organize on a daily, weekly, and semester basis.
  4. Work as part of a team, sharing responsibilities.
  5. Seek advice and support when necessary.
  6. Use effective communication skills.
  7. Work under pressure and to deadlines.
  8. Maintain a sense of humor and positive attitude in the face of adversity.

Qualifications & Experience

Candidates for positions with the Alzar School should possess and/or demonstrate:

  1. At minimum, a bachelor’s degree in the subject area they intend to teach.
  2. Work experience within a classroom setting and/or outdoor settings.
  3. Recent experience working with teenagers.
  4. Experience leading youth in the outdoors.
  5. Personal domestic and international travel experience.

Other Special Responsibilities & Knowledge

Due to the nature of the school, faculty will be called upon to support nonacademic areas of the school.  Specific out-of-classroom job duties will be determined as the entire staff is determined.

Faculty may be asked to assist and/or lead in one or more of the following areas:

  1. General office work
  2. Recruiting of students
  3. Admissions of students
  4. Maintenance of school facilities
  5. Fundraising and development
  6. Marketing and communications
  7. Food preparation
  8. Equipment procurement and maintenance
  9. International travel planning
  10. Afternoon and evening activity planning and supervision
  11. Weekend supervision of students

Candidates must possess:

  1. Some Spanish speaking, reading, and writing ability.
  2. Proficiency with a variety of computer software and applications, to include some of the following (but not limited to):
    1. Microsoft Office software suite
    2. HTML programming
    3. All Google apps
    4. Facebook, Twitter, and other social networking sites

Physical Requirements & Work Conditions

The candidates must be willing to work unusual hours, sometimes in adverse outdoor conditions, and provide creative solutions to a variety of issues.  A significant portion of the work duties will be spent with students and trip participants, working intrastate, interstate, or internationally in an uncontrolled outdoor environment.  This position requires a high level of physical activity.

The candidate shall possess and/or demonstrate:

  1. The ability to lift and carry a 50-pound backpack for a distance of at least 8 miles over rugged terrain.
  2. The ability to swim at minimum 200 meters in open-water conditions.
  3. The ability and desire to spend multiple days/weeks living in the wilderness.
  4. Excellent general physical condition and endurance, specifically relevant to the outdoor sports he/she instructs for Alzar School.

The candidate can expect:

  1. Potentially dangerous situations, including: avalanche hazard, rock and ice fall, wilderness based medical emergencies, extreme temperatures, adverse weather, mountainous terrain, whitewater rivers, open water passages.
  2. Extended and irregular hours each week.
  3. Participation and leadership roles in outdoor expeditions that are away from home for multiple weeks/months at a time.
  4. Extended international expeditions requiring living in a foreign culture.
  5. Physical labor requirements, both in the outdoor setting and around campus.
  6. Extensive time commitment.

The faculty are expected to:

  1. Lead or assist with instruction for a variety of academic subjects at the direction of the Head of School
  2. Supervise the proctored, evening study hall sessions provided for students.
  3. Work individually with struggling students (including English Language Learners) to help improve students’ academic performance.
  4. Demonstrate and articulate high expectations and set targets for students.
  5. Lead or assist with planning, grading, and reporting, to include the complete planning and instruction of an academic unit.
  6. Assist with school-wide efforts to maintain regional accreditation for the school.

Membership in larger faculty

  1. Faculty members are responsible for working with the other faculty and staff of the Alzar School to maintain a culture of learning and leadership development in multiple, global settings.
  2. The faculty are expected to:
    1. Maintain professional standards and to help develop constructive working relationships amongst other staff members and between staff and students.
    2. Participate in frequent staff meetings.
    3. Work in small groups of staff members to work on school improvement goals.
    4. Collaborate with other staff members to provide interdisciplinary instruction.
    5. Assist other staff members as need arises, to ensure continuity of instruction (to include covering classes, team teaching, providing one-on-one tutoring, etc).
  3. Membership in school community and larger community
  4. The faculty are a part of the larger Alzar School community.  As such, he/she will have responsibilities that extend outside of the classroom.   First and foremost, the teaching fellow is an adult role model and mentor for the students.  He/she must behave in a manner that exemplifies the principles of the school.  He/she will also have responsibilities related to student life outside the classroom.
  5. The teaching fellow will be expected to:
    1. Help maintain a school culture and curriculum which takes account of the richness and diversity of the school’s communities.
    2. Promote positive strategies for challenging prejudice and dealing with harassment.
    3. Work with other teachers and staff to coordinate a range of community-based learning experiences.
    4. Seek opportunities to invite parents, community figures, businesses or other organizations into the school to enhance and enrich the school and its value to the wider community.Position responsibilities.

Dates of employment

For Teaching Fellow Positions:

  • FALL
    • Teaching Fellow Training for Fall 2015- early-mid August, 2015  (exact date TBD, required for all Fall teaching fellows)
    • Last day of fellowship for Fall 2015 – December 19, 2015
    • Teaching Fellow Training – mid January, 2016  (required for all Spring teaching fellows)
    • Last day of fellowship for Spring 2016 – June 1, 2016

For Teaching Positions:

Starting for Fall 2015 semester, for the entire 2015-2016 school year.  Training to occur during summer 2015.


For Teaching Fellow Positions:

This is an unpaid fellowship position.  However, teaching fellows will be provided with free housing on campus and food while on expedition and on campus.  Teaching fellows will be expected to purchase their airfare to Chile (and pay associated baggage and visa fees).  Additionally, the teaching fellows have the opportunity to certify in wilderness advanced first aid (or recertify in WFR) and swiftwater rescue at no cost.  Teaching fellows also have access to the school’s pro-purchase deals.  Teaching fellows are asked to deposit $2,100 to the school before the start of the semester to purchase plane tickets and rent any necessary equipment.

For Teaching Positions:

The compensation packages are typically set in late Spring.  However, we do not anticipate dramatic changes from this year.  This past year, for first-year (to Alzar School) teachers, compensation has included wages, on-campus housing, meals with the school, two trips to Chile, health insurance, voluntary participation in a retirement fund, and professional development and gear stipends.  We estimate the total package be valued equivalent to a $36,000/year position.  The wages, paid over a 12-month period, have been $20,400 for new teachers for the 2014-2015 year.

Please contact the Head of School for more specific and up-to-date information.

Application procedures and deadlines

To apply, please submit a 2-page resume and cover letter (both as PDFs) to the Head of School, Sean Bierle at sean@alzar.org.  We will be receiving applications through the month of January.  Finalists for the positions will be interviewed in late January and early February by video conference (Skype or Google Hangout).