Founding High School Operations Manager (2016-2017)

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FOUNDING HIGH SCHOOL ADMINISTRATION: Operations Manager for the 2016-2017 School Year

Our Founding High School Operations Manager is an essential member of our high school’s founding team. She/he will ensure the smooth operation of the systems which ensure services are delivered to students and families, and that support the work of Unity’s teachers and staff.  In doing so, she/he will play a critical role in the fulfillment of Unity’s mission: empowering students as scholars and citizens so they may lead fulfilling academic, personal, and professional lives.

Overview

Unity Preparatory Charter School of Brooklyn (Unity) is an independent charter school that proudly serves the community of central Brooklyn in New York City. We are currently in our third year and serve 320 sixth, seventh, and eighth graders and their families. Over the next four years, we will continue to grow one grade level per year until we reach full size in 2019 with approximately 700 students in grades 6-12. We look forward to the graduation of our founding class in the spring of 2020.

In the 2016-17 school year, we will open our doors to our first cohort of ninth grade students.  We are now seeking to bring together a strong team of gifted educators and administrators to lead in building a high school of distinction that truly equips our students with the skills, knowledge, mindset, and experiences to realize their postsecondary aspirations and positively contribute to the well being of their communities.

About Unity

Every day, the school community at Unity works as a team to empower our students. Though the scope of each staff member’s daily tasks and responsibilities is broad, we aim to align all elements of our work with the school’s mission: to empower students as scholars and citizens so that they may lead fulfilling academic, personal, and professional lives. This mission is the heart of our school; it informs our choices and unites our community under one shared purpose.

As a young and growing school, Unity strives to continuously strengthen its rigorous academic program in the liberal arts & sciences. Unity teachers are creators and collaborators, developing curriculum that is designed with our specific students in mind. Our students are at the center of all that we do at Unity, and our structures and systems reflect that. We prioritize differentiated academic support, offer extended learning time, and expose students to an ever-expanding array of enrichment clubs and learning opportunities outside the classroom. Additionally, we are building a supportive school culture that emphasizes empathy and fosters students’ socio-emotional development.

As a school and learning community, we believe that:

  1. Students Rise to the Level of Expectations Placed Upon Them: To ensure student success, Unity staff members provide support commensurate with the high expectations placed upon students, both in the form of academic support and support in character development.
  1. Diversity Matters: We firmly believe that educational equity is best achieved, and academic learning is most profound, in diverse school settings. Our community draws strength from the rich experiences of each student.
  1. Applications Expand the School Environment: To supplement students’ academic learning, we provide students opportunities to apply classroom knowledge to real world experiences. This requires going beyond the school’s walls so that students may meaningfully interact with and positively contribute to the local community. The typical school day cannot provide such a program – we thus offer an extended school day and school year.
  1. A Positive School Culture is Powerful: Our core values, the code of conduct, the enrichment programs, and the attitudes and behavior of the staff breed a culture in which students experience a sense of unity with classmates, understand the power of being highly educated, and take responsibility for their own learning. We complement academic education with training on managing emotions and developing character strengths including our Core Values of Awareness, Initiative, Courage, Inquiry, Kindness and Integrity.
  1. Strong Teaching is a Central Lever in Promoting Student Learning: Recruiting, developing, and retaining exceptional teachers is an absolute priority for us. We reward teachers generously for their contributions to student learning. Likewise, we provide ample, on-going opportunities for teachers to develop their skills, establish and meet goals, and be challenged to reach their full potential as educators.
  1. Assessment Beyond Standardized Exams: We believe that using standardized test results as the sole measure of a student’s academic progress leads to an incomplete understanding of the student’s overall ability and potential to excel. An annual year-end presentation of a portfolio of work spanning the entire year is a more comprehensive and informative representation of a student’s learning.  These Roundtable presentations also reveal a student’s interpersonal skills and development as a citizen. When examining standardized test data, it is imperative that a student’s growth is celebrated as prominently as the student’s actual proficiency level.
  1. Sharing Success is Essential: We subscribe to the notion that any school developing innovative practices that successfully promote student learning has a responsibility to share them with other schools.

As a school in only our third year of operation, we have enjoyed a number of promising successes.  Recent academic achievements for the 2014-15 school year include:

  • Unity ranked #8 among the city’s 1,200 elementary and middle schools in promoting academic growth in mathematics proficiency.
  • Unity students ranked in the 59th and 75th percentiles in academic growth in ELA and mathematics, respectively – meaning that our students grew, on average, more than the typical student with similar backgrounds and skills.
  • Unity’s most academically needy one-third of students ranked in the 82nd and 78th percentiles in academic growth in ELA and mathematics, respectively.
  • The percentages of Unity students scoring “proficient” or above in ELA and mathematics grew by 51% and 88%, respectively.

In addition to demonstrating accelerated growth across multiple assessment measures, our students showed progress in a myriad of other ways:

  • 98% of students successfully participated in their end-of year Roundtable presentation – a 45-minute oral presentation given to families, Unity faculty, and community members and supporters.
  • 100% of our students participated in an afternoon extra-curricular activity in each of our trimesters in 2014-2015.
  • Close to 50% of our student body participated in a team sport in 2014-15 – for many, this was a first-time experience.

Based on a citywide survey completed by students’ families, Unity’s satisfaction rates were higher than the citywide average in all categories. Results of special note include:

  • 100% reported that Unity has high expectations for their child.
  • 99% reported they are satisfied with the education at Unity.
  • 98% reported that Unity is keeping their child on track for college, career, and success in life.
  • 99% reported that their child receives a wide variety of courses, extracurricular activities, and services, which help keep their child interested in school.

Finally,  our operations-specific achievements illustrate the positive community that we have developed at Unity, and the organizational health of the school:

  • In our first two years of operation, we enjoyed an average teacher retention rate of approximately 90% (vs. 65% retention across NYC charter schools)
  • We have maintained a balanced budget in each year of operation, and in each of our first two years, completed the year with a surplus
  • We have developed a strong, positive working relationship with PS 44, the school with which we share our school building. We currently serve over 30 of their graduates.

Responsibilities

Our administration plays an essential role in establishing Unity as a model educational institution.  The Founding Operations Manager supports and propels many of the systems that help teachers foster students’ desire and capacity to learn independently, think critically, and communicate proficiently. 

Key responsibilities of the Founding Operations Manager include but are not limited to the following:

Technology
  • Maintain the technology infrastructure in Unity’s high school
  • Coordinate maintenance of staff and student computers, school website, and school wireless networks
Facility
  • Monitor submitted requests for repairs to school building to ensure prompt completion
  • Initiate and track service records for office equipment and technology infrastructure
  • Ensure school books, materials, furniture, and equipment are properly stored and accessible when needed
  • Enter and monitor permits for building use outside of regular school hours
Student Recruitment
  • Communicate with Brooklyn families and community members
  • Collect student applications and documents
  • Maintain database of student and staff contact information
  • Maintain list of elementary and middle schools, and elementary-level programs, services, affiliates, and events
  • Track student admission applications and maintains waitlist
Human Resources
  • Lead the creation and posting of open staff positions
  • Coordinate interview logistics
  • Administer, collect, and store documentation for all high school staff
Finance and Purchasing
  • Monitor and purchase school, office, other supplies
  • Receive deliveries and distribute items to appropriate parties
  • Ensure Unity’s financial policies and procedures are implemented with fidelity
  • Research purchases and identify cost savings
Student and Staff Record Management
  • Maintain personnel records and track staff leave time
  • Support the collection and maintenance of student records in accordance with city, state, and federal regulations
  • Identify and correct irregularities in student and staff records
  • Oversee printing and distribution of progress reports and report cards
  • Manage all records requests
  • Maintain student records in ATS and CIR, generate various reports
  • Organize and maintain physical student record files
Scheduling
  • Assist in scheduling family-teacher conferences, teacher office hours, family events, standardized testing, use of audio/video equipment, computer carts/lab, and other technologies
  • Coordinate and support classroom or student club coverages in the event of teacher/staff absence
Family and Community Relations
  • Coordinate written and telephonic correspondence with families and community members
  • Communicate with students’ families to keep families abreast of school news
Non-instructional personnel
  • Manage Receptionist and School Aide
Transportation services
  • Coordinate the provision of student MetroCards
  • Maintain ATS data to ensure that student records are current
  • Ensure compliance with mandated busing per student IEPs
City/state/federal regulations and reporting
  • Prepare student- and school-related data, as needed, for submission to City, State, and Federal Departments of Education

Qualifications

A candidate for this position must be equipped with:

  • Demonstrated commitment to the vision and philosophy of Unity Preparatory Charter School of Brooklyn
  • Bachelor’s degree is required
  • At least 3 years of experience as an Operations Manager or a comparable position in a comparable organization
  • Expertise in working with diverse populations of students and families; familiarity with Unity’s student population and the community to be served
  • A demonstrated openness and responsiveness to constructive feedback and a strong commitment to continuous improvement and professional growth
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills; strong interpersonal skills with students, parents, colleagues, and community members; experience working collaboratively in team settings
  • Approaches work with maturity, humility, versatility, a solution-oriented mindset with a strong work ethic, and, of course, a sense of humor
  • Proficient in MS Office Suite programs, ATS, CIR
  • Sets the highest standard of excellence for herself/himself
  • Is committed to acting with honesty and integrity in all matters involving Unity students, parents, staff, and community members
  • Fluency in Spanish preferred

As an equal opportunity employer, Unity Preparatory Charter School of Brooklyn hires without consideration to race, religion, creed, color, national origin, age, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, marital status, or disability.