In pursuit of excellence, the overnight Environmental Learning Centers that are part of MOSFA strive to embody the organizational and programmatic practices listed below:
Mission Alignment: There is alignment between the stated mission of our organization and our programs, policies, planning, and decision-making at the operational and governance levels. Members of our organizations feel included in the mission-based work.
Collaboration: Center decision-makers are at the table to provide leadership and to pursue sustainable funding models for the communities we serve.
Commitment to Maine Students: We are committed to ensuring overnight environmental learning experiences are available to Maine schools inclusive of strategic marketing and efforts to remove barriers to access.
School Relationships: We consider schools to be strategic collaborators; the relationship is more important than the transaction. We focus on the care of students and adults throughout the partnership.
Overnight Living and Learning: We consciously design the student experience, including lessons, meals, and on-campus living, to support environmental awareness and social-emotional learning through an immersive experience.
Prioritizing Outdoor Learning: Our program design uses the outdoors and local ecosystems as the primary asset to support learning.
Science and Ecology: Science, ecology, and sustainability are core focal points of our curricular offerings.
Research-Based Educational Practices: We train our educators in current and proven educational strategies.
Our Educators: Field educators are essential to our work. We value our educators and invest in their career development.
Operational Standards: We use good governance, policies, and practices to ensure the health and safety of participants, staff, and our organizations.
Ethical Leadership: Our leaders seek out an understanding of best practices for ethical behavior at the organizational and individual level. This includes a commitment to equity and inclusion.
Assessment: We conduct formal assessments of our program goals that consider the impact on students, teachers, the community, and staff. Feedback is welcomed and part of a culture of constant improvement.