Academia Antonia Alonso
Academia Antonia Alonso Charter School (La Academia) seeks a catalytic and forward-focused leader to serve as the founding principal for the first dual language Expeditionary Learning elementary school in Delaware. The leader of La Academia will be in a unique position to create a transformative educational environment as the school realizes its mission to provide an academically challenging two-way immersion program to guide students to become bilingual, biliterate, and bicultural.
Background and Opportunity
La Academia will be opening its doors to 300 students in grades K-1 in the fall of 2014 and growing to a 600 student K-5 configuration by adding one grade per year. La Academia’s mission is to inspire children to become joyful, confident, and creative learners who will be multicultural stewards and leaders in the communities they touch.
The school will employ Expeditionary Learning, a school design that engages students in hands-on, inquiry-based, project-based learning and promotes self-discovery and critical thinking. Consistent with the intent of Delaware’s charter school law, La Academia Antonia Alonso will expand quality public school options for elementary school students, and will also employ an innovative school design that has demonstrated particular effectiveness for high-need subgroups, specifically Hispanic and ELL (English Language Learner) students.
Through implementation of the Expeditionary Learning (EL) model, Academia Antonia Alonso will be built around five core practices:
• Leadership and School Improvement: Strengthening leadership across the school in instruction, culture, and curriculum
• Culture and Character: Building a school-wide culture of trust, respect, responsibility, and joy in achievement
• Active Pedagogy: Employing dynamic instructional practices that build skills and critical thinking
• Learning Expeditions: Addressing standards through a project-based curriculum connecting to the real-
world context of the local community
• Structures: Creating time for student and adult learning, collaboration, and a focus on excellence
Planning Year (July 2013-June 2014)
• Guide the development of the curriculum, school policies, systems, and structures.
• Work with Charter Management Organization and Board Members to hire instructional staff
• Work with Charter Management Organization and Expeditionary Learning School Designer to plan professional development including summer institute for staff
The Principal will be La Academia’s instructional leader and will hold primary responsibility for ensuring the academic success of all students. The Principal will develop and manage the school’s academic program and will support, develop and evaluate instructional staff. The Principal will report directly to the Board of Directors and will collaborate with the school’s Charter Management Organization (CMO), and leading community partner, The Latin American Community Center.
Core responsibilities of the Founding Principal include:
• Develop, implement and manage the school’s academic program in a manner consistent with the school’s vision:
o Help develop and implement instructional programs, structures, and decision-making processes that support La Academia’s vision, mission, and instructional philosophy
o Contribute to the development of extracurricular programs and alignment between school day and out-of-school time, including summer programs
o Work with the faculty to establish and commit to clear student achievement goals and provide direction and encouragement to all instructional staff in the accomplishment of goals
o Assume significant responsibility for evaluating student learning: supervise the collection and analysis of multiple sources of data and employ the results to continually improve learning and engagement among all students
• Recruit, develop and evaluate instructional staff:
o Supervise and support the instructional staff
o Plan, implement, and support professional development of instructional staff, as part of the school-wide professional development plan
o Nurture and promote diverse instructional leadership in support of the school’s mission and continued growth and sustainability
• Maintain a safe and clean facility:
o Communicate daily with the custodial staff to provide direction and feedback
o Determine priorities to support the use of the facilities and the scheduling of work
o Conduct emergency drill procedures as required
o Establish the standards and benchmarks to be used to measure the performance of custodial and maintenance staff
The Principal, Board and Charter Management Organization will work together to implement a cohesive, clear vision and ensure the school meets its mission and academic goals. They will:
• Develop and sustain a school culture and learning community that embodies La Academia’s commitment to Expeditionary Learning and bilingual education
• Build strong relationships with parents, families, and the community.
• Ensure equity and high expectations across the school
• Ensure that student enrollment and retention targets are met.
• Maintain an atmosphere of openness, confidentiality, and trust
• Demonstrated bilingual and bi-literate proficiency in English and Spanish and bicultural fluency with American and non-American cultures
• Passion for working in the field and commensurately strong work ethic
• Successful leadership experience in a public or non-public school serving low income and ELL students, with significant results in closing student achievement gaps
• Demonstrated success in encouraging and engaging parental involvement.
• Commitment to accountability for all aspects of school’s charter, academic performance agreement, and school operations.
• Master’s or Doctoral Degree in a relevant field from an accredited college or university
• Five (5) years of instructional/classroom experience.
• Exceptional organizational, communication (writing and speaking in Spanish and English), public relations, and interpersonal skills.
• Ability to prioritize and effectively manage competing tasks and responsibilities.
• Ability to sustain a calm, reasonable approach and to communicate effectively in stressful or problematic situations.
• Skilled in the use of the internet, email, and Microsoft Office.
• Display a high-level proficiency in the use and application of educational technologies
• Possess a Delaware Principal Certification or proven ability to meet certification criteria required
• Able to lift up to 50 pounds
• Able to hear within normal range, with or without amplification
• Able to participate in activities that may include standing, sitting, walking, and to perform work requiring visual acuity
• Experience in a bilingual school
• Experience in an Expeditionary Learning School
• Experience with Project-Based Learning
• Knowledge of and practice in contemporary educational models
• School start-up experience
Deadline to apply: January 3, 2013
To apply, email cover letter, resume, and a list of at least three references to Zahava Stadler at firstname.lastname@example.org.