Main areas of focus and responsibility:
Embrace, embody and communicate the vision, mission and values of La Scuola
Oversee the admissions and recruitment of new students to the school in keeping with the mission of the school and according to policies and annual strategic goals set by the Head of School and by the Board.
Ensure full enrollment across the school at all times (Preschool through Grade 8)
Foster a diverse Preschool through Grade 8 student body based on socio-economic factors, race & ethnicity, family structure, and other markers.
Lead school marketing initiatives in conjunction with the Director of Advancement, Head of School and key Board members as applicable.
Collaborate with school committees including Admissions, Marketing & Design, Parents Association and Development Committees.
Possess a rich knowledge of the Reggio Emilia approach, the IB PYP and MYP Curriculums and language immersion programs; embody the International Baccalaureate learner profile
Specific duties (not limited to):
Present the school to prospective students and parents, which includes:
Serve as primary representative at admissions events including, but not limited to fairs, open houses, and tours as needed.
Systematic and efficient handling of applications and communication with families;
Conducting parent tours; interviews with candidates and their parents;
arrangements for admissions testing; securing of necessary student records; and communicating final decisions to the appropriate individuals.
Oversee development of admissions and marketing materials (brochures, pamphlets etc.), mailings and publications including the school website (open houses, admissions timeline, openings etc.) ; Communicate internally and externally core messaging and admission process details.
Evaluate and redesign aspects of the admissions and marketing program with the goal of maintaining a full capacity enrollment of qualified students and a wait-list of qualified applicants which consist of at least 10% of the maximum class size for each grade.
Administer, in collaboration with the Head of school, CFO and the Financial Aid Committee the sliding scale tuition vetting process and program.
Plan, create, implement, execute and share the Admissions calendar
Maintain relevant statistics on all aspects of the admission and re-enrollment program and seek comparative benchmarking. Maintain an accurate and complete database on all admissions functions. Provide all relevant demographic data annual for school surveys
Work closely with Division Heads and teachers on students placement in different grades, on preparing faculty and staff for admissions events and to maintain intimate knowledge of the program offered
Oversee the Admissions office, creation of the admissions budget in collaboration with the Head of School and Business Office.
Process and evaluate applications for Preschool through Grade 8
Develop admissions policies and procedures in collaboration with Head of School and Admissions Committee and the Board of Directors (including tuition, program offerings, age cut-offs, sibling policies)
Be an active member of local Admission Directors association/network (BADA); Represent the school at various gatherings and conferences.
Produce monthly Admissions reports for the Head of School and the Board
Implement a rolling admissions process in order to maintain full enrollment in each class throughout the year
Organize new parent and new student orientations and other events (in collaboration with Parents Club and Room Parents) to help educate incoming parents about philanthropy and volunteerism. Manage a pool of parent volunteers to speak and assist at informational sessions, open houses and tours
Review the Student and Family Handbook each year
Focus on family retention efforts throughout the year including conducting exit interviews of families leaving before graduation. Monitor attrition and identify local trends.
Develop a broad outreach program and field admissions inquiries (email, phone) as necessary
Support the school and its leadership and be an ambassador for La Scuola.
Perform other duties as assigned by the Head of School.
Bachelor’s degree, with an advanced degree preferred
Significant leadership experience in admission and enrollment work with a deep understanding of best practices, innovative and engaging programs
Self-starter who has the capacity to plan, execute, and evaluate enrollment plans in a fast, start-up like environment in collaboration colleagues
Strong analytical and problem solving skills; ability to analyze and interpret data and statistics with a distinction between causation vs. correlation
Fluency in A warm and genuine personality who cares about people and believes deeply in the pillars of La Scuola’s program while keeping children at the center of their work.
Ability to listen deeply and "understand" what to communicate about our program in order to generate excitement for La Scuola.
Possesses a learners mindset and is open to growth and new ideas
Experience working internationally or with an international community
Awareness of DEI and representation
Strong organizational skills and ability to prioritize
Fluency with technology and software implementation. Working knowledge of Google applications required. Experience with Ravenna preferred.
Maintains strong understanding of the work of the business office.
Ability to be highly confidential in handling sensitive personal and institutional knowledge
Professional Performance Standards:
The Director is guided by/expected to meet the following performance standards:
Maintaining an awareness of the school’s mission and philosophy;
Performing tasks and responsibilities in a complete and timely manner;
Maintaining a creative, team-building approach to job performance and seeking to bring a constructive, problem-solving orientation to all tasks;
Seeking opportunities to develop skills and create opportunities to teach co-workers;
Communicating in a timely, honest and sufficient manner;
Exercising professional judgment and discretion;
Working well with a diverse staff and school community; and
Embody La Scuola’s Mission and values: Nothing without Joy!
Note: This position description is subject to review and may be updated/revised as the position and organization evolve.
La Scuola believes that all children are born intelligent and curious, and that families and educators should work collaboratively with their children to shape a better future. Above all, La Scuola believes that learning and living should be joyful; its mantra is Niente senza gioia! (Nothing without joy!). It is a dynamic, innovative and collaborative organisation.
La Scuola’s curriculum has three pillars: the Reggio Emilia pedagogy, the International Baccalaureate Program framework, and Italian language immersion.
The Reggio Emilia approach believes that: children are born curious and competent and should be respected and celebrated; they should be protagonists in their learning with parents and teachers serving as collaborators; and they deserve to have beautiful environments in which to explore and construct knowledge. Some essential components of the Reggio Emilia approach in practice are: small class size, project-based learning, classrooms that offer a home-like environment, and learning in the context of real-life issues. Indeed, the classroom itself is considered a teacher. Reggio Emilia inspired spaces (i.e., the learning spaces at La Scuola) also offer an atelier/laboratory where children can experiment and discover, as well as a piazza that serves as a central meeting place.
The International Baccalaureate is a globally recognized curriculum framework for children ages 3-18 that challenges students academically and fosters a sense of duty to their community to be engaged, caring, and respectful global citizens. This curriculum is inquiry based and focuses on concepts and topics that cross subject areas, which enables students to make new and meaningful connections.
Italian language immersion supports language and cognitive development and appreciation of other cultures. Children who study a second language score higher on verbal standardized tests conducted in English, perform better in math and logic skills testing, have better executive function skills and are better at solving complex problems. La Scuola was recently officially recognized by the Italian Government as an Italian School abroad.
As noted, the curriculum is aligned to the International Baccalaureate-Primary Years Programme (IB-PYP) for students ages 3-12 and the International Baccalaureate-Middle Years Programme for students age 12 to 14.
Elementary School (K-5)
In the Elementary School, students engage in learning through units of inquiry around a central idea, where learning requires students to develop knowledge and skills across a number of subject areas. Across all subject areas, students investigate through structured and purposeful inquiry, in line with the IB-PYP curriculum framework. Each day, students are encouraged to be curious, ask questions, explore, and interact with the environment physically, socially, and intellectually. The IB-PYP focuses on the development of the whole child as an inquirer, both in the classroom and in the world outside. It is a framework guided by six trans-disciplinary themes of global significance, explored using knowledge and skills derived from six subject areas (language; social studies; mathematics; arts; science; and personal, social, and physical education), as well as trans-disciplinary skills, with a powerful emphasis on inquiry. Instruction is taught in both the English and Italian languages, in which students are expected to become fluent, express themselves, and effectively communicate cross-culturally. Instruction begins as majority Italian language (i.e., 80% of instruction in K-1) and slowly transitions to majority English (i.e., 70% of instruction is in English by eighth grade).
Middle School (6-8)
La Scuola’s first eighth grade class was enrolled this past fall at the beginning of the 2019-20 academic year. The Middle School is currently authorized as an International Baccalaureate for Middle Years (IB MYP) school. The MYP curriculum framework comprises eight subject groups, providing a broad and balanced education for early adolescents.
Technology plays a significant role for all Middle School students; the Middle School offers a one-to-one Chromebook program, as well as exposure to computer science and coding.
Notably, the Middle School curriculum is separated into two paths: the Italian Language Immersion Program and the Italian Language Learners Program.
The Italian Language Immersion Program is for students who have grade-level literacy and communication skills in Italian. Students in the language immersion program study language and literature in both languages and Spanish as a third language. Students in this program become fully literate in Italian and English, and develop reading, writing, and conversational skills in Spanish.
Students in the Italian Language Learners Program are completely new to Italian or are at a beginning to intermediate level of Italian. Students in this program have an enriched Italian as a second language experience that is fully integrated into the International Baccalaureate Program.
Students in both tracks participate in science, math, and other IB MYP required subjects. This ensures that all Middle School students share a common experience and are together when not in language classes.
Currently, the Pre-K, Elementary and Middle School are currently on three different sites. The preschool is located in the sunny Potrero Hill/Dogpatch neighborhood. This is an up-and-coming neighborhood right next to the new Mission Bay UCSF campus. The site is well-served by public transit. The Lower Elementary Campus (K- 2) is located in the Hayes Valley/Alamo Square lively and happening neighborhood. La Scuola recently signed a 60-year lease with the San Francisco Archdiocese for its new K-8 St. Charles site located in the Mission District. Currently, Grades 3-8 are located here, with the plan for the entire Elementary School to move to the Mission District as well within the next four years or sooner.
To Apply: Submit your resume, cover letter and list of at least three references with contact information here.
Experience required: Director
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La Scuola International School