Founded in 1952, Norwood School is a coeducational, independent day school with approximately 450 students in pre-kindergarten through eighth grade. The School sits on 38 beautiful and expansive acres in Bethesda, Maryland, less than six miles from Washington, D.C. As one of the finest PK-8 schools in the country, Norwood sets the bar high and is committed to educating the whole child in a diverse, student-centered, challenging, and nurturing environment, which continually promotes equity, inclusion and cultural competence.
Norwood’s child-centered education and its very intentional emphasis on being a happy place of learning create an environment where each individual child is loved, nurtured, challenged, and truly known. As a result, children flourish at Norwood. They love learning; they are creative and critical thinkers. They are confident in who they are, and they feel safe taking risks. They are kind and caring people, who, fueled by our motto, How you lead your life matters, make helping others a priority in their lives. At the end of their eighth grade year, our graduates leave Norwood exceptionally well prepared for high school and empowered to make positive contributions to our world.
Overview of Position and Responsibilities
The position of Head of Middle School (Grades 5-8) at Norwood School is intended to provide the Head of School with help in carrying out the mission and philosophy of the School. The Head of School is responsible for determining how the mission will be carried out, and the Head of Middle School is responsible for executing the plan within the parameters of his/her job description. It is expected that the Head of Middle School will use good judgment in fulfilling the role.
The Head of Middle School is responsible for program coordination and student well-being for grades 5-8, which includes approximately 220 students and 40 teachers. The Head of Middle School works collaboratively with both teachers and parents to assure both the social-emotional and academic development of each student.
Working in conjunction with the Head of Lower School, who is responsible for grades PK-4, and the Director of Curriculum and Instruction, the Head of Middle School has shared responsibility for curriculum development and professional development. The Head of Middle School also has selected school-wide responsibilities for various ongoing programs and initiatives.
The Head of Middle School participates as a member of the administrative team and works closely with other administrative staff members, such as with the Director of Curriculum and Instruction to oversee curriculum alignment and development; the Admissions Director to evaluate prospective students; the Development Director of Development to identify and craft programs for possible outside funding; the Director of Communications to ensure the community is well informed of middle school events and activities; and the Business Manager to oversee the budget.
Specific responsibilities include:
Promote Norwood School according to the School’s mission statement, philosophy, and vision.
Maintain open communication with the Head of School to provide the cohesiveness and the cooperation necessary for analyzing situations, making decisions, and taking actions.
Compile information, as requested by the Head of School, for reporting to the Board of Trustees.
Attend Board Meetings as requested by the Head of School.
Serve as an administrative representative on Board committees and other committees as assigned by the Head.
Coordinate activities with the Principals Team.
Coordinate and lead student support meetings.
Responsibilities as they relate to grades 5-8
Supervise all activities relating to student and faculty in middle school, grades 5-8.
Greet every middle school child by name each morning.
Lead chapel three days a week.
Establish a positive child-centered learning climate through behavior and through verbal and written communication with parents, children, and teachers.
Meet with faculty to set annual goals, visit classes, evaluate faculty.
Supervise all next school placement activities, including meeting with all eighth grade families, writing recommendations for all eighth graders, reading faculty recommendations, visiting schools.
Work with parents and teachers to develop interventions for students with academic, behavioral, social, physical, or emotional concerns
Conduct faculty meetings, weekly with each grade-level or group of grade-level teachers.
Monitor classroom budgets. Review the monthly classroom budget statement from the Business Office.
Read and edit all progress reports for middle school students.
Maintain an active referral file of psychologists, therapists, educational consultants, and tutors (grades 5-8).
Interview substitute teachers and provide a current list of qualified substitute teachers to the substitute coordinator.
Evaluate the performance of substitute teachers.
Monitor student need for services with Learning Specialist, the Middle School Counselor, and the Dean of Students.
Schedule monthly meetings with teachers in each classroom to discuss student progress.
Assist with hiring of middle school teachers.
Write monthly division newsletters.
Work and coordinate with the Head of Lower School and Director of Curriculum and Instruction all special events which include assemblies, back-to-school nights, Grandparents and Special Guests Day, etc.
Act as a resource to parents and school in issues of parenting education.
Meet with admissions team to determine middle school admissions
Serve on Faculty Curriculum Committees.
Promote diverse perspective in curriculum planning.
Make sure that teachers at each grade level are carrying out the program as designed.
Motivate faculty to continue to grow professionally.
Conduct formal and informal evaluation of faculty, which includes completing a rubric of professional qualities for each faculty member.
Keep faculty informed about current workshops, seminars, and conferences.
Successful experience as a middle school teacher
Prior experience with independent school leadership
Thorough knowledge of educational theory and practice as it related to adolescents.
Accomplishment with faculty development
Well-versed in learning styles, differentiated instruction, and social-emotional development
Commitment to cultivation and celebrating a multicultural Norwood
Skilled in both consensus-building and decision-making
Organized, with effective communication skills
Compassionate, flexible, and reflective
Intelligent, sensitive, resourceful, creative, and a sense of humor
Master’s degree required.
Salary dependent upon experience.
Please submit cover letter and resume to (no phone calls, please):
Matthew Gould, Head of School Norwood School 8821 River Road Bethesda, MD 20817 [email protected]
Norwood School does not discriminate in employment opportunities or practices on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, sexual orientation, or any other characteristic protected by law.
About Norwood School
Norwood School’s mission is to ensure that each of its students grows intellectually, morally, physically, socially, emotionally, and spiritually, while preparing to function productively and generously in our pluralistic society. Norwood’s challenging educational program and broad-based activities are designed to help students experience joy in learning, develop self-confidence, and learn respect for the rights and feelings of others. Embracing diversity is integral to the School’s tradition that both recognizes the worth of each member of the community and emphasizes the common values of academic achievement, mutual respect, cooperation, and personal responsibility.