Position Summary Westmark School seeks an experienced educator to lead an Upper School that prepares ambitious students with language-based learning differences for college and post-secondary success.
The Director will shape the School’s curriculum and college placement process; attract and retain exceptional faculty; and ensure that best education practices are implemented to address the needs of students and their parents.
Essential Duties and Responsibilities Reporting to the Head of School, the Director is responsible for maintaining the School's board-approved mission, academic activities and outcomes for Upper division students, to include college readiness:
Academic and Division Leadership • Act as the educational leader of the Upper School division (currently 92 students) responsible for its day-to-day operation; direct the activities of the members of the School instructional team and, in conjunction with the business manager and non-instructional staff; prepare a master class schedule that takes into account the various needs of the School community; and assign teachers and students to classes and other duties;
• Review, enhance and continually improve the School curriculum to ensure that it incorporates best practices and standards for college preparatory high schools, taking into account the unique requirements of a school that prepares youth with language-based learning differences for success in college;
• Thoroughly understand the profile of students with language-based learning differences; develop plans for meeting their needs, and for engaging all members of the community in student success;
• Assist in the admission process for the testing, interviewing and evaluating of applicants for enrollment;
• In conjunction with the college counselor, oversee and continually upgrade college preparation and placement support processes;
• Manage the Upper School budgets; review and approve purchase requests and determine the most appropriate use of allotted funds;
• In collaboration with the Head of School and administrative team, be an active member in all areas of the School; work toward a resolution of all problems - both routine and unique - as they arise; keep the Head of School informed of the general programs, activities and problems of the School.
Students & Parents The Director ensures that Upper School faculty provide appropriate academic instruction and guidance for students, while fully integrating parents in the process, including:
• Review and continually improve Upper School curricula, processes, programs, technologies, practices, pedagogies and schedules with a focus on continual improvements that deliver superior outcomes for students and faculty;
• Assist in establishing guidelines for proper student conduct and dress; monitor student discipline consistent with school policies; and maintain accurate records of student attendance and citizenship;
• Maintain complete academic records on all students and oversee grading and other reporting according to best practices used by teachers to measure student achievement;
• Communicate student progress clearly and consistently with Upper School parents;
• In coordination with the school student council and parents, support and continually enhance after-school activities of Upper School students.
Faculty The Director observes, mentors, and evaluates faculty in the development and implementation of curriculum; supervises teaching; and reviews and evaluates academic programs. The Director will also:
• Oversee the day-to-day activities and assignments of the Upper School advisors, department chairs, faculty and college counselor; provide an environment conducive to learning, a school climate which is supportive and that both establishes and reflects teaming and collaboration;
• In close coordination with the Head of School, recruit and retain educators with the expertise, positive energy and focus required to successfully serve Westmark students; establish programs for the orientation of new teachers, assuring they adhere to school policies and practices;
• Work collaboratively with tech committees and specialists to support educational technology initiatives and dynamic needs in the Upper School;
• Work closely with the Head of School, division heads and curriculum team in planning and implementing a comprehensive professional development program for faculty;
• Ensure compliance with legal requirements of government regulations and agencies, and adherence with the educational standards established by the State of California and by those agencies that examine and accredit Westmark School.
Ideal Experience and Personal Characteristics The Upper School Director should have the following types of experience, qualifications and characteristics:
• A mission-driven individual with a belief in, and a career committed to, the independent school movement and the education process; preferably with experience helping students living with language-based learning differences;
• Master’s degree; minimum of 7 years progressive experience in administration or equivalent managerial expertise in grades 9-12; strong curricular and college preparation and placement experience, with particular knowledge of trends and best practices;
• Excellent written and oral communication skills with an ability to effectively communicate with all stakeholders of the School;
• An ability to create a caring and dynamic culture for students and faculty; a good listener and strategist; comfortable receiving input from many sources and able to analyze and formulate disparate information into a sound, well-organized plan.
Physical Demands and Work Environment The physical demands and work environment characteristics described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions for the job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
• Physical demands: While performing the duties of this job, the employee is required to sit in on meetings and work on a computer for long periods of time; and is occasionally required to walk, reach with hands and arms, balance, stoop, talk, and hear. The employee must occasionally lift and/or move up to 15 pounds. Specific vision abilities required by the job include close vision, distance vision, and the ability to adjust focus.
Start Date: July 2019
Interested applicants should submit electronically and as separate documents the following materials:
• Cover letter expressing interest in the Upper School Director position • Current resume • Statement of educational philosophy • List of five references with contact information, including email, to:
firstname.lastname@example.org Westmark School 5461 Louise Avenue | Encino, CA 91316
Westmark School is an equal opportunity employer and makes employment decisions on the basis of merit and job performance. School policy prohibits discrimination based on race, color, creed, gender, gender identity or expression, religion, marital status, age, national origin or ancestry, physical or mental disability, medical conditions (including genetic characteristics or information), sexual orientation, or any other consideration made unlawful by federal, state, and local laws.
About Westmark School
The leading independent school in Los Angeles for children with language-based learning differences in grades 2-12, Westmark School has provided an exceptional college-preparatory environment for more than 30 years, allowing students to grow and succeed, not only in the classroom, but also in life.
Westmark students discover how they learn best and become advocates for themselves, leading them to become highly functional, concrete thinkers, and preparing them for a successful college experience.
Westmark’s exceptional multi-modal, research-based pedagogy differentiates instruction based on student need and allows children to discover not only their personal academic style but their strengths and areas of need as well. Using state-of-the-art technology—including our one-to-one iPad program—and facilities designed with our learners in mind, as well as low student-teacher ratios, our distinguished faculty provide individualized instruction.
Westmark is about much more than what happens in the classroom. With a beautiful new athletic field, highly competitive sports teams, a small sound stage and production studio, vibrant music, performing and visual arts programs, an advance...d experiential learning program highlighted by engaging outdoor educational class trips, an integrated service learning program, student leadership opportunities as well as countless enrichment programs, Westmark has much to offer motivated, creative, and multi-faceted children.