Utopian Academy for the Arts
Utopian Academy for the Arts is an independent public charter school network serving elementary and middle school children and families throughout Clayton County, GA. The Utopian Academy for the Arts Elementary School was approved by the Clayton County Public Schools System and will operate as a locally-approved charter school. The rationale for the enrollment plan for Utopian Academy for the Arts is to provide a significant educational benefit of having gender-based classroom environments, and classes in the fine, dramatic, and media arts for students in Clayton County, GA. Since its inception, The Utopian Academy for the Arts has operated as a middle school, but in 2020 we will expand to include elementary education as well. The elementary school, which will initially just offer kindergarten and first grade, will serve 125 students in its first year and will occupy existing space on Utopian’s campus.
About the Principal: The Principal is responsible for the development and implementation, monitoring, and evaluation of student data to assist teachers in delivering data-driven instruction. The Principal will also oversee all student educational plans. As part of the Utopian Academy for the Arts administration team, the Principal is responsible for conducting teacher and school staff evaluations. The ideal candidate has an understanding of Arts integration in elementary school settings. He/ she can build a cohesive school vision focused on student achievement and continuous improvement, and can align all activities in the school to that vision. He/ she can use data effectively and shape all activities to that vision.
The Principal is a dynamic leader who can balance operational needs with setting long-range vision for elementary school grades. He/ she provides direct supervision, management and professional development of elementary school staff, intervention supports and specials staff. The Principal is the voice and face of the elementary school and is accountable for dealing with parent and staff concerns and feedback.
The Principal reports to the Executive Director and works closely with the Chief Academic Officer to realize the mission and vision of the school.
The main areas of responsibility have been identified for the Principal:
1) Leadership and Ethics-
o Promotes the success of all students by maintaining a culture that inspires student achievement, high quality instruction, and faculty and staff professional development to meet the diverse learning needs of the school community. The decision -making and compassionate behavior that fosters excellence and ethical conduct amongst the school community.
a) Faculty & Staff
- Hires, mentors, leads and inspire school faculty and staff to ensure students meet or exceed their goals.
- Provides clear leadership within a highly collaborative school environment.
- Spearheads a culture of student academic achievement and character development that engages, challenges and inspires youth to succeed beyond their post secondary education.
- Fosters opportunities that link outdoor physical adventure with academic rigor.
- Creates a responsive, flexible and nimble academic structure that addresses strengths and weaknesses as well as issues specific to all students (from high performing to under achieving)
c) Parents & Community
- Leads, educates and inspires parents and community stakeholders to support their children in their academic and character development.
- Develops strong partnerships with diverse community organizations, businesses and individuals in order to fulfill the Charter’s greater goal of community and college preparatory skill sets for its student body.
2) Stakeholders, Relationships and Deliverables-
a) Faculty and Staff
- Manages matters regarding hiring, retention, licensure, waivers, job descriptions and revisions, supervision, discipline and termination or discharge of employees of the school.
- Regular observation, coaching and evaluation of teachers and staff practices.
- Works closely with the Dean of Curriculum to ensure instructional support, plan professional development and maximize on and off site professional development opportunities.
- Outlines and monitors clear, measurable goals for faculty, staff and school performance.
- Observes teacher classroom practices and evaluates performance of models, lesson plans, teacher PDP.
- Attends and facilitates weekly staff meetings to ensure student support and faculty and staff productivity is optimized.
- Ensures that school structures are in place for monthly team planning and evaluations.
- Develops and implements a faculty and staff development plan that is based on data- driven assessments, Georgia Standards of Excellence, current research findings, class observation and metrics on student growth.
- Supervise all school volunteers who work directly with students and provide daily tasks to the Office Manager when needed.
- Meet with SPED leadership regularly to ensure successful integration of the program.
- Assist the SPED department with IEP meetings and follow-up.
- Conduct regular informal and formal evaluations of teaching staff
- Communicate and document areas of concern with teachers, including improvement plan if necessary
- Assist with writing the ILP plan and create a monitoring tool for each plan to ensure adherence by all involved staff
b) Students Creates in collaboration with the Chief Academic Officer, a variety of transparent, relevant metrics that demonstrate student growth and academic performance relative to State Standards, and those reflected in the School’s charter and Governing Board policies.
- Spearheads student integration and orientation program that outlines school culture and expectations of the student body by the school.
- Empowers student participation in the school through the establishment of a Student Council, which fosters feedback and communication between the school leadership, staff and student body.
- Implements and monitors a proactive student recruitment and retention program.
- Implements a state of the art youth leadership coaching programs to inspire positive, compassionate character development and initiative amongst students.
- Understands the needs for each student (high performing to underachieving youth) and provides a supportive structure which empowers them to succeed.
- Builds supports structures that provide time for knowing students individually and allowing for student specific education plans and guidance.
- Implement RTI (Response to Intervention) for handling student behavior and academic habits of work for those who need an alternative approach.
- Ensure that students receive the requisite support through Title I, Special Education, ELL and/ or other services as needed to insure their success.
- Prepare the school schedule for faculty, staff and students
c) Parents, Community and Governing Board
- Creates an open channel of parent – teacher communication that keeps parents updated on student performance.
- Develop a parent-teacher organization that represents the diversity of the school.
- Develops with the Chief Academic Officer a shared document that serves as an ongoing communication tool for the community, such as a newsletter or electronic notification system.
- Prepares the academic school calendar by May 1 of each academic year for the Executive Director and Governing Board approval.
- Documents trends in parent involvement and presents to the Board bi-annually its findings.
- Proactively increases public visibility of Utopian Academy for the Arts unique school community and works with local media to create a positive image for public support of the school to increase and maintain student enrollment.
- Develops strategic partnerships with staff, parents, business, agencies and community organizations that expand the school’s presence, stewardship and impact in the region.
- Attends Governing Board meetings, provides timely input and documentation at request for agenda items and takes responsibility for follow up requests when needed,
- Assists the Executive Director and Governing Board when needed in fulfilling the requirements for charter renewal and federal, state and local statues and requirements.
- Anticipates and communicates matters which may require the Executive Director and Governing Board awareness and attention.
- Reports quarterly on the progress towards achievement of faculty, staff and student performance.
d) Monitor and enforce the School Discipline Policy
- To help achieve its behavioral and safety objectives, the Principal is expected to: o Establish an on-line system of monitoring student discipline records o Maintain the discipline tracking system with our student information system o Provide regular reports to the Governing Board with student discipline information
- Uphold and enforce the Discipline Policy and Uniform Policy o Ensure consistent compliance by all staff members o Enforce the Discipline Policy with all students as needed o Communicate student discipline issues with parents and document outcomes.
e) Test Coordinator
- Attend Test Coordinator meetings to secure materials and administration procedures
- Create a test schedule for the elementary school
- Deliver completed tests; ensure proper completion of administrative items
- Provide training and preparation materials to teachers as needed
- Master’s Degree or higher;
- Georgia Leadership certification or Education Leadership degree preferred or eligibility to obtain licensure in Georgia;
- Demonstrated successful leadership in a senior administrative position in a charter, traditional public, or private school;
- Demonstrated communication skills- Model correct use of language, oral and written;
- Demonstrated successful teaching experience and other school roles, preferred in an urban education setting;
- Exhibited leadership in working with professional staff, students, and the community toward achieving goals;
- Agreement with and commitment to the academic goals and philosophy of Utopian Academy for the Arts, particularly the single-sex, all-male model;
- Demonstrated willingness to implement merit pay approach for teachers;
- Commitment to accountability, including a rigorous student testing regime;
- Experience or familiarity with data management and presentation and commitment to achieving for students’ academic goals.
- Experience with Special Education IEP and 504 intervention plans
How to Apply
Application and materials should be submitted electronically by the priority deadline of December 4, 2019 to email@example.com “Elementary School-Principal” should be labeled in the Subject Line of your message. Applications submitted after priority deadline will be reviewed on a rolling basis. All submissions should include the following:
- Completed Application for Employment
- Cover letter / letter of interest defining your strengths and your educational and leadership philosophy. Please cite specific and measurable examples from your practice that have resulted in closing the academic achievement gap.
- Copy of valid Principal/ Education Leadership Licensure or certification
- 3 Current Letters of Recommendation with contact information