Head of Senior School
Founded in 1996, West Point Grey Academy (WPGA) is one of Canada’s leading independent coeducational schools, with 943 students in junior kindergarten to grade 12. The school campus is located on 38 acres of unceded Coast Salish land in Vancouver’s Point Grey neighbourhood, with sweeping views of the North Shore Mountains and English Bay and proximity to UBC and downtown Vancouver.
In one word, the WPGA experience is authentic. In our supportive, family environment, students are encouraged to be the best versions of themselves. By exploring their interests and talents, asking questions, seeking connections and channelling their innate creativity, students cultivate a passion for learning that extends beyond the school day and long after graduation. A strong academic foundation is both strengthened and balanced by our commitment to character building, global awareness, arts and music, outdoor education, service and student wellness, with the aim of developing future-focused leaders who reflect our core values and who continue to embody our mission of Shaping Lives of Inquiry, Action and Joy.
Head of Senior School Overview
WPGA seeks a forward-thinking, dynamic educational administrator to lead our Senior School, which comprises 400 students (grades 8 to 12) and 60 teachers and staff spanning multiple departments, including Global Studies, Outdoor Education, Personal Counselling, and University Counselling. The Head of Senior School reports to the Head of School and is member of the school’s Leadership Team and an ex-officio member of the Board of Directors. The Head of Senior School leads a high-performing Senior School Leadership Team, which includes the Assistant Head of Senior School, the Vice Principal of Learning and the Vice Principal of Student Life, who collectively ensure best practices in secondary education, oversee academic/cocurricular programming as well as teacher professional development, and help to steward the school’s Strategic Plan.
Key Responsibilities and Attributes
The Head of Senior School is a continuous learner who keeps informed of progressive curriculum design, and works to cultivate new or established partnerships that expand our students’ global awareness and skills. They liaise regularly with the Head of School and Leadership Team on all Senior School activities, including curriculum, policies, cocurricular programs, student life, staffing, budgeting and facilities, and develop and present strategies for implementation. They are actively engaged in and contribute to the Independent Schools Association of British Columbia (ISABC), Canadian Accredited Independent Schools (CAIS) and other professional educational organizations.
The Head of Senior School is an experienced educator who maintains comprehensive knowledge of current pedagogy, curriculum design, best practices in assessment and reporting, and trends in curriculum innovation, including languages, science, design, technology, numeracy, the arts, athletics, postsecondary preparation and work experience. They inspire and oversee the implementation of relevant, values-based academic and cocurricular programs that encompass the skills and perspectives our graduates need to succeed in university and beyond.
The Head of Senior School embodies the school’s core values; moreover, they motivate others, including students, staff, parents, volunteers and alumni, to achieve their potential as learners, educators and school ambassadors. They maintain high standards and hold themselves accountable to inspired, time-sensitive goals and objectives that advance the school’s Strategic Plan, vision and mission, in collaboration with the Head of School, Leadership Team and Board of Directors. An excellent communicator and negotiator, they resolve issues fairly and compassionately through active listening, empathy and diplomacy.
The Head of Senior School is an authentic relationship builder who develops meaningful, long-term connections with students, staff, parents, volunteers, alumni and alumni families, community partners and external stakeholders. An effective manager, they lead a highly collaborative senior leadership team and guide the hiring, onboarding and mentorship of teachers and staff. A strong presence at school events, student assemblies and parent sessions, the Head of Senior School strengthens WPGA’s family culture; celebrates idea sharing, diversity and progressive thinking; and reinforces the school’s open partnership philosophy between teachers, parents and students.
The Head of Senior School creates a positive, inclusive environment that empowers students to self-advocate, self-reflect, contribute to school life, serve others in our communities, and be responsible for their actions and behaviours. As student wellness and mental health are priorities, the Head of Senior School identifies practices and initiatives that support student wellbeing. Likewise, they create a professional, open environment where teachers and staff are supported in curriculum innovation and program development, and are provided continual professional development opportunities to grow as educators.
Experience and Education
The successful candidate has a minimum 10 years’ experience as a senior administrator in secondary schools, preferably in independent schools. A master’s degree and a BC Teaching Certification (or the ability to acquire) are required.
To Apply: To explore this opportunity, please forward a cover letter and résumé to firstname.lastname@example.org. Consideration of candidates will begin mid-December 2018; the new Head of Senior School will start in summer 2019.