Sandy Spring Friends School seeks dynamic candidates for the role of Lower School Head. The Lower School Head is the academic, administrative, and cultural leader of the lower school division responsible for all aspects of the curricular and co-curricular program. The Head works with Lower School faculty and staff in order to implement and augment the mission of the school, core Quaker values, and to ensure all Lower School activities are consistent with that mission. This position reports directly to and works closely with the Head of School and as member of the school’s senior leadership team (Administrative Council), partners in implementing and managing strategic and operational initiatives.
Essential Job Functions:
Building and sustaining a divisional culture that promotes a sense of community, belonging, collaboration, and growth for students and colleagues.
Overseeing the Lower School curriculum in concert with the administrative team; identifying and leading necessary or desirable curricular change.
Leading, supervising, and evaluating all Lower School faculty and staff.
Assists in recruiting and hiring new faculty and staff in cooperation with the lower school administrative team, human resources, and Head of School.
Leading the division in the introduction, support, and maintenance of diversity initiatives.
Leading the administrative team in creating an educational environment that ensures all of our students are well-served and have equitable learning resources.
Working with the Middle School Head to facilitate interdivisional retention and student transition into the Middle School.
Managing the Lower School budget.
Ensuring appropriate and balanced teacher workloads in conjunction with human resources and Head of School.
Ensuring that meetings of the faculty, staff, admin, and various committees are conducted in accordance with Quaker practice.
Communicating effectively and gathering input from all lower School constituencies including faculty, staff, students, and parents.
Overseeing class placement and retention of students.
Working with the Student Resource Team on major discipline cases and on acute student support needs.
Overseeing counseling department, including student support services.
Overseeing the integration of technology into the academic and administrative programs of the Lower School.
Working closely with Lower School parents and the Parents Association on community events, including social events and open discussion forums.
Working closely with the Admissions Department to ensure the consistent admission of students with profiles in alignment with the mission and capabilities of our program.
Overseeing the preschool classrooms to ensure developmentally appropriate programming and to facilitate a particularly strong partnership approach with the parent body at those grade levels.
Assuring, in partnership with the administrative team, compliance with Maryland State Department of Education and Office of Child Care requirements for early childhood education programs and elementary education accreditation standards of the Association of Independent Maryland Schools (AIMS).
Leading programming and planning for all broad-scale divisional shifts between distance learning, hybrid learning, and in-person learning models.
Knowledge and Skill Set Requirements: demonstrated classroom teaching experience; proven leadership; a diplomatic communicator skilled in fostering partnerships; a passionate educator with a deep understanding of child development; an advocate for justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion in early childhood and elementary education; an effective delegator; a visionary leader who is able to embrace Quaker values and use Quaker process as it applies to administrative tasks; and a seasoned individual adept at understanding the independent school landscape within the Washington Metro area.
Physical Requirements: Daily desk work including significant amounts of telephone and computer time; as part of daily routines, moving around a large campus with uneven pavement and managing stairs; frequent walking inside and outside as part of general job duties and responding to students and/or incidents.
Sandy Spring Friends School does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, national or ethnic origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or a person's status as a qualified candidate with a disability in administration of its educational program, admission policies, financial aid program, staff hiring and other school-administered programs.
SSFS offers an inquiry-based college preparatory program that emphasizes deep understanding throughout the curriculum while encouraging collaboration, instilling confidence, fostering practical experience, and cultivating respect for others. The School's teachers help students internalize a process we call "QRA” —Question, Reflection, Action—which ensures that they think critically, integrate new knowledge, and apply what they learn. We help students develop their individual sense of purpose as they become caring citizens of the world.
Our school’s culture, rooted in the idea that collaboration engenders achievement, can be traced to our Quaker heritage and abiding belief in the Quaker values of simplicity, equality, honesty, stewardship of the environment, and peaceful resolution of conflict. Our teachers are lifelong mentors and strive to identify and cultivate each student’s intellectual, extracurricular, and social passions. In doing so, we help shape students whose actions speak volumes and whose lives become exemplars—not only among their peers and families today but also in their personal, educational, and professional communities long after high school. Sandy Spring Frie...nds School students are taught to act upon what they learn. This call to action propels their accomplishments as graduates, in college, and beyond.