Job Opening: Academic Dean

Saint Monica Academy
Pasadena, CA

Vice Principal and Academic Dean
Job Description

St. Monica Academy, an independent Catholic, classical-liberal arts school for 1st through 12th graders, is seeking to fill the new position of Vice Principal and Academic Dean of the High School. More information about the school can be found on our website: http://www.stmonicaacademy.com. The High School Charter of Principles is found at http://stmonicaacademy.com/wp-content/uploads/Charter.pdf.

General

  • The Vice Principal will exercise day-to-day leadership of the high school.

  • In the absence of the Headmaster, the Vice Principal will assume responsibility for the school.

  • The Vice Principal will have primary responsibility for promoting high school enrollment through parish school visits, open houses, tours, conferences, and developing appropriate media including the school website.

  • The Vice Principal will teach at least one course, but will not coach sports teams. Academic extracurricular activities for high school students, such as speech/debate, essay competitions, science fairs, math bowls, etc., will be overseen by the Academic Dean, including assigning particular faculty or others as “coaches” for them.

Spiritual

  • The Vice Principal will exemplify piety and virtue in his or her own conduct, through daily prayer, frequenting the sacraments, regular formation, studiousness, modesty, prudence, integrity, optimism, and cheerfulness. The Vice Principal will be someone who is mature, responsible, and enthusiastic. The Vice Principal must promote and adhere to Catholic doctrine and the teachings of the Church’s magisterium.

  • For the high school, the Vice Principal oversees the Dean of Discipline in the formation and correction of students in matters of morals and virtues. Consistent with the school’s history, the spiritual direction and choice of spirituality of individual students will not be mandated or controlled by the school, apart from attendance in morning assemblies and instruction in the Catholic faith in Religion courses.
  • The Vice Principal is also responsible for organizing programs for parents that explain the mission of the school and the specific dimensions in which the school seeks to assist parents in their role as the primary educators of their children. In particular, there will be programs explaining the classical-liberal arts curriculum and Catholic morality as it enlightens practical decisions about dating and the relationships between the sexes.

Curriculum

  • The Academic Dean is responsible for maintaining a program of high-school studies that conforms to the school’s mission and philosophy (as expressed in the Charter of Principles and Curriculum Committee decisions), WASC, archdiocesan, and State standards.
  • The Academic Dean will have a deep appreciation of Christian theology, philosophy and the broader Western intellectual and cultural tradition. The Academic Dean will understand the landscape of history and should be familiar with the great historical writers, from Herodotus and Thucydides to Parkman, Churchill and Adams. The Academic Dean should have studied the great theologians, from Augustine and Aquinas to Blessed John Paul II. The Academic Dean should have familiarity with the great philosophers and thinkers, from Aristotle to Chesterton. The Academic Dean should know and continually study the great works of rhetoric and oratory, from Cicero to Lincoln. The Academic Dean should also have a command of the subjects of math and science as they are taught at the high-school level and tested by college-admissions examinations.
  • The Academic Dean will serve as a member of the High School Curriculum Committee and be responsible for implementing its decisions as to, e.g.:
  1. Subjects to be covered
  2. Reading lists
  3. Rigor
  4. Sufficiency of writing assignments and instruction and feedback in basic writing techniques and more advance techniques of rhetoric
  5. Sufficiency of classroom reading aloud (and teacher highlighting of metrical passages and rhetorical devices) to ensure that students are steeped in, and become aware of, beautiful writing and language
  6. Testing and other assessment methods
  7. Alignment of standards, instruction, and assessment by viewing curriculum maps, lesson plans, thematic units, and vertical plans
  • The Academic Dean will evaluate final examinations as to whether they fairly and adequately test the subjects and knowledge levels prescribed by the Curriculum Committee.
  • The Academic Dean will evaluate the rigor and effectiveness of instruction by evaluating, inter alia, the results of annual standardized tests (e.g., PSAT & AP) compared to GPAs. The Academic Dean will work to ensure that high school students are prepared to excel in standardized tests used in college admissions, so long as doing so is consistent with our school’s fundamental academic principles and pedagogy. As part of this, the Academic Dean will design an outreach to high-school graduates to survey their level of preparedness for various programs of study at the college level, such as “pre-med,” and report to the Curriculum Committee on any recommended course changes that such analysis suggests.
  • The Academic Dean, working with the College Guidance Counselor, will oversee efforts to maintain the school’s compliance with the current University of California admission requirements (e.g., “system A through G requirements”).

Faculty

  • Reporting to the Headmaster, the Academic Dean will supervise and evaluate high-school teachers, including their fidelity and effectiveness in implementing the classical curriculum and pedagogy prescribed in the Charter of Principles and the Curriculum Committee decisions, and in the growth of their professional skills.
  • The Academic Dean will oversee the teachers’ preparation of course plans and coach them in related methodologies (e.g., “vertical alignment,” horizontal planning, backward planning, standards-based instruction, assessment construction, etc.) and in using various “classical” pedagogies to ensure that students exercise and strengthen the grammatical, logical, and rhetorical faculties.
  • The Academic Dean will participate in interviewing and selecting faculty candidates and providing orientation of new faculty.

Inquiries should be addressed to:
Martin Boles
Board Vice President and Search Chair
213-680-8428
Martin.boles@kirkland.com

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