Elementary Teacher

Great Lakes Academy is a K-8 charter school that opened in July, 2014 with Kindergarten and First Grade.  In 2015-16 we will grow to grades K-2. We are seeking high capacity, fun loving, mission-driven, growth-oriented teachers to work with us on our team.  In Kindergarten and First Grade, we have a co-teacher model, with the majority of the day being taught in small groups with two teachers in the classroom.  

Job Description

A Great Lakes Academy Teacher will be a part of a team of game-changing teachers working to change the face of education on the South Side of Chicago.  A GLATeacher takes responsibility for the high academic achievement and character development of every child in his or her classroom. In grades K and 1, teachers co-teach and work collaboratively for student success, teaching in small groups in core academic subjects. Both teachers have daily planning and teaching responsibilities.  In grade 2, we have one teacher in our classrooms with a smaller number of students overal, and we co-plan all subjects across the grade

Job Outputs

  • Demonstrates a classroom culture that is a fiercely positive learning environment, and devotes the majority of time to instruction rather than discipline.
  • Instills a joy of learning in students and works to develop self-motivated and self- monitoring learners with the skills to set, monitor and meet self-set goals.
  • Employs previous experience, best practices, coaching, and creativity to connect with students to ensure student achievement on interim and state tests demonstrates an average of 90% mastery; student achievement on STEP averages 3.5 levels of growth per year.
  • Establishes relationships with students’ families, cultivating learning environments for our students in and out of the classroom.
  • Consistently models the BE GREAT Great Lakes Academy core values: Bravery, Evolving, Grit, Responsibility, Enthusiasm, Achievement, and Team.

Job Responsibilities

  • Writes and delivers rigorous lesson plans for students that are engaging, and effective per student data.
  • Implements classroom instruction that supports the social-emotional growth of students, as well as academic growth.
  • Cultivates positive, collaborative relationships with families, and consistent communication with families.
  • Constantly assesses and evaluates student growth; action plans on class-wide, group-wide and individual basis in response to student data.
  • Creates a classroom culture that develops in students the BE GREAT core values and independent learning skills. 
  • Participate in an annual four-week staff orientation and training.


  • Outstanding classroom management that relies on positive, proactive reinforcement of high behavioral standards.
  • Strong relationship builder with students, families, and other staff members.  
  • Critical thinker with ability to analyze data and adjust plans to improve student achievement.
  • Growth mindset and ability to accept and implement feedback.
  • Ability to work collaboratively and without ego.
  • Willingness to place student achievement as highest goal.
  • Self-reflective, with a drive to continually grow as a teacher.
  • Willingness to work hard and the flexibility to work through start-up challenges.
  • Ability to quickly learn and implement technology innovations in the classroom. 

Job Requirements

  • Bachelor’s degree is required; and
  • Minimum of two years teaching experience in an urban public school or charter school setting preferred, but not required; and
  • Valid Illinois State Certification is required. 
  • Belief in and alignment with Great Lakes Academy’s core beliefs and educational philosophy is non-negotiable.

Culture Fit- Do these words describe you?

Fiercely positive, Hard-working, Intelligent, Team oriented, Organized, Sense of humor, Belief in the power of education, Humble, Self-reflective, Goal-oriented, Enthusiastic.

As an equal opportunity employer, Great Lakes Academy hires without consideration to race, religion, creed, color, national origin, age, gender, sexual orientation, marital status, veteran status, disability, or any other category protected by applicable law.