Rocky mountain prep News


An Update from RMP Founder & CEO James Cryan

June 11, 2020   |   By James Cryan

June 11, 2020

Dear RMP Family and Supporters,

As we bring the school year to a close, I am writing to share with you that I have decided that the next school year (2020-2021) will be my last leading Rocky Mountain Prep.

This was an emotional decision for me and one that I did not make lightly. My wife Liz and I have decided we want to move back to the east coast where our family lives. As we approach a summer where we likely can’t visit loved ones and prepare to welcome our second child in October, the importance of being closer to family is clear to us.

I am making this announcement as early as possible to allow for a strong and smooth leadership transition for our organization. I am committed to leading RMP next year through these unchartered waters of the pandemic as we prepare for how school will operate differently next year. This September, our Board of Directors will launch a comprehensive search to identify the next leader for RMP that will include significant opportunities for community input. For more information please read a letter from our Board Chair here. In the meantime, I will continue to lead RMP until summer 2021. 

As I plan my transition, I have been reflecting on RMP’s first decade and the principles that have inspired our work during this time. Central to our values is the belief that every child, regardless of race and background, deserves a loving and rigorous public education that allows them to understand and reach their full potential. In a time when we are reflecting with both anguish and action on the systemic racism in our society, our values and vision are crucially important.  Looking toward the coming school year, I feel even more urgency to provide rigorous educational opportunities to our students while also turning my lens inward to ensure I as a leader - and we as an organization - are doing everything possible to fight for equity.   

I am very confident about the future of Rocky Mountain Prep. We have an incredibly capable and strong leadership team, support team and board of directors.  Each school is led by a dynamic and committed principal. Finally, we have an exceptionally talented and loving team of educators who are dedicated to nurturing young minds and growing as professionals.

If you have questions, please reach out to me directly. Thank you for everything you do for our students and our community. 

With love,



Some Questions and Answers that may be on our Families’ Minds


What does the CEO of a charter school network do again?

Much of the work of a CEO of a network of schools is to a) set a vision for the organization b) set annual priorities c) work with our board who directs us and holds us accountable d) create the conditions for our leaders to thrive e) ask for, pay attention to, and respond to feedback and data that tells us where to celebrate and where to improve f) be the face of the organization and lead through example and community relationships and g) help raise the philanthropic money we need to be successful.


What opportunities will exist to help select the new leader? 

There will be many opportunities for you to be involved in our selection process of the next CEO of RMP. These will start in July and we will launch a national search in September. We will want to hear your input on things including what’s most important to you in a new leader and what you hope we’ll most consider in the search process.


Should I be worried?

No! Although change is hard for all of us, the CEO is one member of a large team of amazing leaders in our organization and school. Your scholar and your family will continue to be cared for, known, and heard and we are excited about the opportunities this transition can bring!


How will my child’s education change as a result?

You shouldn’t expect to feel any shifts as a result of this change. With new leadership comes a new opportunity for us to make decisions that move us toward the education that we all want for all children- an education that allows each scholar to reach their full potential. Put another way, you shouldn’t anticipate any big changes, we will be thoughtful in any changes that occur, and we will continue to engage you as partners in these decisions.


Will this impact Fall reopening? 

No. My number one priority is a successful launch to hybrid school this fall. Our plan to offer a hybrid between classroom-based and remote learning is the same. More information is coming in July! Stay tuned!


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