You’re built different.

Here’s your chance to build a school that is different.

Confident teacher smiling in front of a school

Here’s your chance to build a school that is different.

Unique opportunity

Two years of training, connections, and resources to help you own your vision and see it through.

Led by charter school founders

We don’t pretend to know what it’s like to found a school – we’ve done it and so have our friends.

Professional compensation

Create something meaningful while earning $125,000 per year plus health benefits for two years.

The need

We’re not waiting for solutions. We’re creating them.

One city, two realities

High-income districts

43.1 %
will complete a college degree or certificate*


Low-income districts

16.5 %
will complete a college degree or certificate*
Teenager in a purple shirt with headphones around his neck with a serious look on his face

The facts are clear – and startling

Colorado Springs is a tale of two cities for students growing up here and attending school. Students attending our region’s four high-income school districts are doing well, bettering state averages for college enrollment and completion. By contrast, a similar number of students attending our region’s four low-income districts are losing ground, graduating from high school at unacceptably low rates, enrolling in college at low rates, and completing college at dismal rates.
*Out of 100 9th graders
Your School

It's time to own it

Put your superpowers (and superfriends) to work

Harness your unique talents and assemble your own amazing team.

Bring your vision to life

Learn from the best and learn how to deliver your best.

Give families the school they want and deserve

You have unreasonably high standards of excellence and equity. So do our families.

You put in the work. We put in the work.

Be the first one in and the last one out. We will be waiting at the door.


Are you ready to create a real legacy?

Mom hugging kid in front of school

Create an enduring school and organization

Great schools serve the whole kid. Great schools serve the community. Great schools attract armies of talent. Great schools balance their budget. Great schools transcend the founders. Great schools become great organizations that endure.

Young student with backpack in classroom smiling

Meet the needs of the whole kid

Reading matters. Math matters. Graduation matters. But so do friends and sports and mental health and recess and families. Great schools don’t cherry pick parts of kids. They take the whole kid, arms wide open.

Group of high-school students in graduation caps walking to their graduation ceremony

Set up for success and successors

Learn from leaders and schools that have done the work. Year after year after year. Learn how to think and lead in decades, not weeks. Learn how to build your school’s future success and team today.

Real impact on thousands of kids and adults

This is real. Thousands of kids and adults are transformed by great schools that make it and endure. Try to find a better opportunity to make that much meaning. Seriously, try.

Fellowship Team

Zach McComsey

Zachary McComsey


Zach is a graduate of Colorado Christian University and Harvard Divinity School. After completing Fellowships at El Pomar Foundation and BES, he founded Atlas Preparatory School. Zach has also led private foundations and founded the Legacy Institute in 2017.

Tony Rosendo bio photo

Antonio Rosendo


Antonio Rosendo is a graduate of Colorado College  and the University of Denver. He has worked as a teacher, higher education admission officer, and co-founder of Atlas Preparatory School. Tony has also led private foundations and founded Spur Philanthropy.

Valerie McCormick bio photo

Valerie McCormick


Valerie McCormick holds multiple degrees from the University of Colorado. Her experience in education includes work as a teacher, principal, and district-level curriculum director. Valerie is a leading expert in instructional quality and education technology.

Zach McComsey and Tony Rosendo smiling in a classroom at Atlas Preparatory School
“The experience of founding Atlas alongside so many wonderful, persistent, and talented human beings was beyond comparison. If you have an insatiable appetite for hard work for good kids, with good adults, it will change your life nearly as much as it changes theirs. And if you are ambitious and humble and lucky, you might one day enjoy the rare satisfaction of watching something you started flourish for a long time without you.”
Zach McComsey – Founder, Atlas Prep
our approach

What it takes to build something different

Level 5 Leadership

Excellent leaders excel in a way that others struggle to replicate. Exceptional leaders excel in a way that others struggle not to exceed. (Thanks Good to Great.)

Personal Humility

Ego, ambition, talent. Check. Check. Check. Turn’s out you are human. Throw a cape on that talent and put the school first, even when it hurts a lot. That’s superhuman.

Professional Resolve

Anyone ever out worked you? Anyone ever tried harder? Anyone cared more? If these questions offend you, welcome to the club.

Entrepreneurial Spirit

Starting something from nothing is a mess. Squiggly lines and blank sheets of paper. If you get that and want that, we get you and want you.

Dedication to Colorado Springs

This is not remote work. Or hybrid work. Or an ocean named zoom. This is real kids and real adults in a real building. All day everyday. Address, Colorado Springs.


Great schools take 10+ years to plan, open, develop, and sustain. Long-term commitments are terrifying for most. They are mandatory for the few. We are looking for the few.


Two Years of Paid Training and Support

Fellowship training combines seeing the best schools, learning from the best leaders, doing your best work, and networking with your community. Training is done in four week rotations: Visit the best schools in the country. Learn practical skills directly from the best leaders in the country. Do the work of writing your charter and planning your school. And network, network, network.

What you'll be doing each month:

Frequently Asked Questions

Have more questions about the Legacy Fellowship?

The Legacy Fellowship is a paid two year training program for education leaders and entrepreneurs interested in starting a new charter school in Colorado Springs. Fellows work full time to open a new school that embraces diversity, equity, and inclusion practices, and offers an educational model serving the whole student.

The Legacy Fellowship is run by the Legacy Institute (, a nonprofit dedicated to advancing education and community development in Colorado Springs.

Not necessarily. While experience and expertise in the classroom is certainly helpful, there is so much more involved in designing and building an excellent new school. The Legacy Fellowship is seeking candidates who have a depth of leadership experience in a variety of areas. 

The Legacy Fellowship is a full-time commitment and candidates should be ready to move to, and commit to, the Colorado Springs community for a minimum of 10-years. Training is in-person all day, every day for two years (minus four vacation weeks each year).

Applying for the Legacy fellowship is a straightforward process that includes an application, a virtual interview, and an in-person interview with Legacy staff.

Fellows make $125,000 per year in salary plus health, vision, and dental benefits.

No. The Legacy Fellowship is funded and designed to impact kids and families in the Colorado Springs region.

With over 300 days of sunshine and the mountains out our back door, Colorado Springs has a lot to offer. Learn more about living and playing in our city using the resources below:

Application process

Ready to build something different?

Fellowship Starts July 2024 | Applications Open Now

Submit your resume and cover letter

Virtual interview

In-person interview

Reference check