The Middle School Dean of Student Affairs is a creative, student-centered educator who believes in and helps cultivate the promise in each of our students. Helping to shape and support all areas of student life, including student behavior and student advising, the Dean leads and coaches adults to help students discover a deep sense of meaningful personal responsibility for their actions, learning, and well-being in our Quaker school. By example and in action, the Dean supports our school mission and school policies, communicating expectations and ensuring that students adhere to current rules and policies (behavioral and academic). In strategic partnership with the Principal and members of the senior leadership team overseeing all aspects of the student experience, the Dean works with students and faculty to shape a healthy, inclusive and positive student culture that reflects Friends Academy’s Quaker mission.
The Middle School Dean leads a small group of grade-level student life coordinators and oversees the advisory program, all of whom work collectively to support the social, emotional, and intellectual well-being of our students. With the Principal, the Dean serves a vital role in creating a dynamic and comprehensive support structure that fosters student agency, belonging, and community membership. The Dean has a working understanding of students at this developmental stage, working actively to develop further understanding of preadolescent cognitive psychology and preadolescent development. Finally, the Dean of Student Affairs helps support all students and adults as they navigate our community rules and expectations for integrity and safety, including restorative and disciplinary responses to promote student growth, accountability, and learning.
Responsibilities of the role include
Actively engaging and listening to student voices and concerns, helping to respond to and shape positive responses to long-term and emerging issues that affect student life and well-being;
Leading middle school and community-wide efforts to live our mission fully and create a strong community that ensures a sense of integrity, agency, leadership, belonging, inclusion, and respect in all students
Maintaining and modifying a mission-aligned, relevant, and meaningful advisory curriculum that includes resources, programs, and student activities to support student health, community membership, and wellness, so each student feels continuously known and valued
Working closely with the Middle School Principal, grade-level student life coordinators and the Health and Wellness team, overseeing, tracking, and monitoring the functionality, effectiveness and responsiveness of our student academic and emotional support programs;
Planning and leading, each year, a positive and supportive onboarding and orientation process for new students and returning students;
Training and supporting grade-level student life coordinators and advisors, as appropriate;
Maintaining and monitoring an academic and student concerns spreadsheet
Leading the culture of discipline in the MS at FA, which we define as the practice of teaching others rules and norms for a healthy, productive, safe community, by empowering students through the use of personalized strategies
Serving as a point of contact and support for students impacted by issues such as harassment, bullying, hazing, discrimination, or sexual misconduct, able to respond with care and concern, make wise decisions in complex situations, and partner with other senior leaders, when necessary;
Collaborating with the Director of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Justice to develop programming to support our daily efforts to create a culture of inclusion and best practices for diversity, equity, and inclusion at FA;
Coordinating all communications on students of concern, including email conferences, parent calls, letters to parents, and other;
Working with Principal, student life coordinators, team leaders, and support staff, overseeing student attendance;
Partnering with the Principal and Assistant Head of School to work with Counsel on any legal issues relating to student life and handbooks, helping lead efforts to comply with all applicable state and federal regulations.
Working with Student Life Coordinators and Athletic Director/Health teachers to re-design, implement, coordinate and maintain a current, relevant and integrated health/well-being program that enhances student physical, social, and emotional wellbeing;
Advising and training student leaders, with the help of our Director of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Justice, including supporting our student clubs, committees, and interest groups.
Giving oversight to campus stewardship and sustainability programs.
Overseeing and helping expand and support our clubs and activities program, to help build healthy student extracurricular pursuits and passions during and beyond the school day;
Helping to shape and extend student programming for service learning and community engagement at grade levels and as part of the advisory program.
Working with faculty and students, helping to coordinate social events and student trips.
Teaching one course each semester and supervising or leading another co-curricular activity, supporting other program supervision as needed.
With the Principal, serving as a liaison to partner with Health Services, Counseling Services, Dining Services, Buildings and Grounds and Public Safety to help maintain the health and safety of our students.
Bachelor's degree or foreign equivalent (required), Master’s preferred
Demonstrated experience working with preadolescents, especially involvement in teaching, coaching, and student life;
Experience overseeing an area/department, including supervisory responsibilities of adults and program development and implementation, especially involving an area of student life;
Demonstrated problem-solving, crisis management, and conflict resolution skills;
Demonstrated excellent written and oral communication, presentation, and facilitation skills;
Strong cultural competency and experience implementing and supporting diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives;
Demonstrated success in cultivating collaborative relationships with diverse stakeholders, including students, faculty, staff, parents, family, and community members;
Ability to maintain effective confidentiality;
To be considered for this position, please send the following to the FA recruitment address ([email protected]):
A cover letter expressing interest in and why candidate is qualified for the position;
A statement of educational philosophy;
Three to five professional references;
Optional: Other supporting material (e.g., articles, speeches, writing samples, or letters of recommendations) that would be informative.
About Friends Academy
Founded in 1876 by Gideon Frost for “the children of Friends and those similarly sentimented,” Friends
Academy is a Quaker, coeducational, independent, college preparatory day school serving students from age
three through the twelfth grade. The school’s philosophy is based on the principles of integrity, simplicity, patience, moderation, peaceful resolution of conflict, and a belief that the silence and simple ministry of the “gathered meeting” brings the presence of God into the midst of busy lives. Friends Academy is committed to developing a diverse
community whose members value excellence in learning and growth in knowledge and skills, a genuine
commitment to service and ethical action, and an understanding that every life is to be explored, celebrated,
and enjoyed in the spirit of the Religious Society of Friends.