Director of Student Services

Join the leadership team at our school and help found a national charter management organization! We believe that all of us should pursue professional passions that fill our lives with meaning and joy. We look forward to working with you to uncover whether this position is right for you.

Overview:

Montessori For All endeavors to open and lead free, high-performing, authentic Montessori schools that partner with families to help children in diverse communities reach their extraordinary potential intellectually, emotionally, socially, creatively, and physically, so that they can pursue lives full of meaning and joy.

Our first campus, Magnolia Montessori For All, is scheduled to open in East Austin in August 2014. Our second campus, Redbud Montessori For All, is on track to open in San Antonio in August 2016. National expansion will begin in 2018.

Our Pillars:

  • Leadership: We teach by example and constantly model living with integrity, eagerly learning, acting courageously, demonstrating persistence, excelling, and respecting and helping others and the environment, so that we can shape the world.
  • Education for the Whole Child: We cultivate the leaders of tomorrow by providing an authentic Montessori education that includes multi-age classrooms, engaging hands-on materials, an emphasis on intrinsic motivation, student-led projects, dual-language development, rigor, and learning beyond the classroom that prepares children for high school, college, the 21st century workplace, and lives as leaders in their families and communities.
  • Teachers as Leaders and Innovators: Our teachers are empowered to shape curriculum and school culture and pioneer ongoing developments in the field of education through research and the dissemination of knowledge.
  • Families as Partners: We partner with families to provide the most nurturing environments at home and school to help children grow into their fullest potential intellectually, emotionally, socially, creatively, and physically, so that they can pursue lives full of meaning and joy.
  • Continuous Improvement: We strive for continuous growth through a process of AssessingàAnalyzingàActing. We hold ourselves and others to high expectations, engage in self-reflection, respond proactively to problems, and take personal responsibility for ensuring success for each and every child.
  • Diversity and Teamwork: We believe that children learn best in racially, culturally, and socio-economically diverse environments, so that they are prepared to act as global citizens and leaders. As such, we commit to working together to create a welcoming and inclusive environment for all members of our diverse community.

Our Schedule & Calendar:

  • Each day, family arrival time is from 8:00-8:30am. Children head directly to their classrooms to greet their community and begin the day.
  • Pick-up time is from 3:45-4:15pm, and afterschool enrichment activities are from 4:00-5:00pm. On Fridays, school dismisses at 2:00pm, so that staff can meet in Professional Learning Communities from 2:30-4:30pm.
  • School starts approximately three weeks before the Austin Independent School District. Professional development begins two weeks prior to that.
  • We will follow a modified schedule of nine weeks in session, followed by a two-week vacation (Fall Break, Winter Break, and Spring Break). The last two days of Fall Break and Spring Break will be devoted to Professional Development.

Director of Student Affairs & Services Goals:

The Director of Student Affairs & Services is directly responsible (in collaboration with the Principal and Board of Directors) for achieving the following outcomes from the 2013-14 Strategic Plan:

  • At least 400 qualified families apply to Magnolia Montessori For All, creating a waiting list of at least 100.
  • In year one, Magnolia Montessori For All serves at least 55% low-income families.
  • In year one, our student body is at least 25% Latino and 25% Black (mixed-income).
  • A comprehensive assessment plan and classroom-level/school-level dashboards are in place for measuring students’ social and emotional progress.
  • A plan is in place to help diverse families feel welcomed and included and to build relationships with each other, the teachers, and the administration.
  • A plan is in place to optimize “families as partners” and to strengthen the bridge between home and school, so that families become their children’s primary educational advocates for life.
  • A plan is in place to ensure a safe, productive, welcoming, and inclusive learning environment both proactively (e.g., consistent school values, behavioral expectations, community meetings, etc.) and reactively (e.g., consequences, a school-wide behavior management toolkit, etc.).
  • At least 25 community members have volunteered to serve as mentors for the 2014-15 school year.
  • We execute a consistent communications and public relations strategy for families, community members, funders, and other stakeholders.
  • At least 10 influential community leaders and/or organizations that are either comprised of or represent the interests of our racially, culturally, and socio-economically diverse community have contributed to the vision of the school as a foundation for an ongoing relationship.
  • We partner with at least three community organizations to broaden and deepen our impact as a school with wrap-around services (e.g., the YMCA for afterschool or vacation care, affordable housing organizations that support families outside of school hours, complimentary mental health services, etc.).

Potential strategies for achieving these goals before school starts might include:

  • Partnering with all the major churches, neighborhood associations, and social service organizations within a 3-mile radius to recruit families.
  • Connecting with major media outlets to recruit families.
  • Planning and executing two family recruitment events.
  • Creating the Student & Family Handbook.
  • Building partnerships with at least 10 businesses in our local area who are willing to donate volunteers.
  • Coordinating enrichment activities for children afterschool and during school breaks.
  • Sending out a monthly e-newsletter (April-Feb.) to families.
  • Mailing out a newsletter every three weeks to enrolled families (March-July).

Director of Student Affairs & Services Responsibilities:

  • The Director of Student Affairs & Services position begins January 2014 and is responsible for achieving the goals delineated above.
  • Once school starts, the Director of Student Affairs & Services is needed on campus from at least 8:15am-5:15pm on Mondays through Thursdays and 8:30am-4:30pm on Fridays (exact hours will be determined on an as-needed basis).

Daily/Weekly/Monthly Responsibilities Include:

  • Responding to immediate discipline issues
  • Maintaining accurate records of student discipline in student information system and permanent folders
  • Calling families daily to follow-up about absences and tardies
  • Recruiting, training, and coordinating parent/guardian/community volunteers
  • Recruiting, training, and coordinating substitutes
  • Managing the afterschool enrichment program
  • Designing and implementing training for teaching assistants
  • Observing and supporting the development of teaching assistants
  • Collecting and tracking payments for the tuition-based pre-K program and the National School Breakfast and Lunch Programs
  • Leading and coordinating the LPAC committee
  • Serving as the homeless liaison
  • Conducting health-related duties, such as administering medicine and coordinating contracted health services, as necessary
  • Planning school-wide events and celebrations
  • Sending home a school newsletter every month to families throughout the school year
  • Coordinate the Family Action Committee
  • Connecting families with local community resources as needed
  • Tutoring students as part of our school-wide Response to Intervention
  • Assuming other duties as they become necessary in a flexible, start-up environment

Benefits:

  • Being a founding member of a national Charter Management Organization
  • Growth and leadership opportunities
  • Family-friendly work environment with onsite childcare (for a fee) and automatic enrollment for children of staff into the pre-K3 through 8th grade program
  • Professional development built into the week and year
  • A collaborative, supportive, and joyful team and community
  • Health insurance and benefits

Requirements & Qualifications:

  • At least three years of experience working in schools (with administrative experience, preferred)
  • Ability to blend progressive discipline techniques with the need for a safe and productive learning environment
  • Bilingual in Spanish and English
  • Ability to multitask, including prioritizing carving out time for planning while simultaneously responding to urgent and important demands
  • Comfort interacting with diverse families and experience with creating a welcoming and inclusive environment for all
  • Experience leading professional development for adults, preferred

How to apply

Application Process:

  • Step One: Submit an application that includes the following components:
    • Resume
    • Cover letter addressing the following:
      • Why do you want to work at Magnolia Montessori For All?
      • Which aspect of the position is most appealing to you? Which aspect is least appealing?
      • What are your biggest strengths related to the responsibilities of the position? What are your most significant areas for growth?
      • How would you describe your discipline philosophy? How would you describe your approach to classroom management?
      • What do you think is the best way to create a welcoming and inclusive community among racially, culturally, and socio-economically diverse families?
      • Rank the following values from 1 (“Value I exhibit most comfortably and most often”) to 6 and give an example of your strongest value (1) and the value you need to work on the most (6): Living with integrity, eagerly learning, acting courageously, demonstrating persistence, excelling, respecting and helping others and the environment.
      • Any additional information you would like to add
      • Notes: Please submit the resume and cover letter as a single attachment. E-mail it to saracotner@montessoriforall.orgwith the subject line: YOUR-LAST-NAME ; Director of Student Services Application
      • Step Two: Selected candidates will be invited to the semifinal round, which includes completing a performance task related to the roles and responsibilities of the position. Final details of what to expect during this round will be sent to selected participants.
      • Step Three: Upon completion of the semifinal round, selected candidates will be invited to the final round. The final round will consist of an interview with Superintendent, Sara Cotner. Other stakeholders might take part in this interview as well. Ideally this interview occurs in person, but Skype interviews for candidates will be considered.
      • Final Verification: Reference check

Statement of Non-Discrimination:

Montessori For All is committed to a policy of equal treatment and opportunity in every aspect of its relations with its applicants, staff members, and families, without regard to race, color, ethnicity, religion, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, disability, age, marital status, military status, pregnancy, or parenthood. People of diverse backgrounds are strongly encouraged to apply.

Austin, Texas
2013-12-13
Montessori For All
n/a
saracotner@montessoriforall.org

183 and Manor Road, Austin, TX, 78724, US
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