Head of school

Duke Ellington School of the Arts
Washington, DC
Jul 17, 2017
Jul 17, 2017
Accountant, IT
Full Time
Job Description THE SEARCH HEAD OF SCHOOL DUKE ELLINGTON SCHOOL OF THE ARTS Washington, DC The Duke Ellington School of the Arts, one of the premier public arts schools in the nation and the only comprehensive arts high school in the Washington, DC metro area, seeks a passionate, dynamic, and inspiring Head of School. The Head of School will join an exceptional leadership team committed to further developing this world class arts high school located in the heart of the nation's capital. The Head of School will be expected to maintain the School's reputation as a nationally and internationally recognized premiere arts school, strengthen the School's external partnerships, attract and retain a strong and talented faculty and student body, and nurture a school climate of open communication and shared vision. Priorities for the next Head of School include uniting stakeholders around an innovative vision for public arts education; partnering with the Ellington Fund to develop a sustainable business model; collaborating with faculty to enhance and better integrate the dual curriculum; and serving as a visible and engaged member of the Greater Washington community. Additionally, the Head will develop and oversee the transition plan for the 2017-18 academic year to a new home for the Duke Ellington School: a renovation of the School's 258,072 sq. ft. building that will open up exciting new possibilities for educational growth. The Head of School will report directly to the Duke Ellington School of the Arts Project Board, and will work in a close, collaborative relationship with the Ellington Fund Board and its President. The Head of School will be a creative, energetic, strategic, and communicative leader who is able to engage the arts and academic staff, students, and the parent community in a common purpose. Candidates should bring successful leadership experience in a student-centered arts school or similar educational organization based in an urban setting; strong interpersonal skills and collaborative management style; well-established relationships with broader arts and education communities; and a deep-seated understanding of the School's educational mission to nurture and inspire passion for arts and learning in talented students who might not otherwise have an opportunity to develop their artistic skills. The next Head of School must value the School's inclusive, creative spirit and be able to strongly and persuasively articulate the value of a Duke Ellington education to various audiences. The Duke Ellington School has retained Isaacson, Miller, a national executive search firm, to assist in the recruitment of its next Head of School. Please direct all applications, nominations, and inquiries to Isaacson, Miller as indicated at the end of this document. Head of School Duke Ellington School of the Arts Page 2 of 8 THE SCHOOL The Duke Ellington School (Ellington) was established in 1974 and remains the sole DC public high school to offer a dual curriculum encompassing professional arts training and academic enrichment, in preparation for college, conservatory, and careers in the arts. Jazz legend Duke Ellington, born in the District of Columbia, named one of his jazz bands The Washingtonians and made his home part of his persona. DC philanthropist and avid art collector Peggy Cooper Cafritz and the late dancer and choreographer Mike Malone returned the favor, building the School to house the creative soul of the District, and to reflect the rich cultural diversity of the United States. From the beginning, public and private partnerships have supported the School, which in 2000 evolved into the Duke Ellington School of the Arts Project (DESAP). This partnership includes the District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS) system, the Ellington Fund, the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, and George Washington University (GW). Ellington follows the academic curriculum of DCPS, which also provides approximately 72 percent of the School's operating budget. Upon graduation, Ellington students receive a standard DCPS diploma in addition to an arts certificate. The Ellington Fund, an independent 501(c)(3), serves as the fundraising arm of Ellington, providing a critical supplement to the funding from DCPS and helps sustain a variety of programs and activities at Ellington. The John F. Kennedy Center provides Ellington with resources in the form of performance space, opportunities for performance, production assistance, and other educational opportunities to enhance the teaching and curriculum offered at the School. GW also provides in-kind support for Ellington in a similar fashion, providing opportunities to collaborate with its departments, sponsoring Ellington events, and participating in Ellington governance. The Duke Ellington School endeavors to nurture and inspire passion for arts and learning in talented students who might not otherwise have an opportunity to develop their artistic skills; ensure that every student is prepared for post-secondary education and/or careers in the arts by offering an intensive arts-based program; and prepare students to become productive citizens in a global society through a strong focus on community service. STUDENTS AND FACULTY Ellington serves approximately 530 students, of which 90 percent are residents of the District of Columbia, from grades 9 through 12. For many students, their four years at the School is a transformative time when they are able to explore their innate talents and passions while gaining mastery of skills in critical and creative thinking and writing that prepare them well for college and a career path of their choice. For the 2012-2013 school year, Ellington students achieved a higher proficiency rate than the average DC Public School student on the DC Comprehensive Assessment System Reading and Math exams, by 22 percent and 31 percent respectively. Ellington's 2014-2015 graduation rate of 87 percent also compares favorably to the DC Public School average of 64 percent. In addition to a full course of academic study, Ellington students engage in a comprehensive study of arts, which may include dance, literary media and communications, museum studies, instrumental music, vocal music, theater, technical design and production, and/or visual arts. Head of School Duke Ellington School of the Arts Page 3 of 8 The School's faculty is made up of both academic and arts teachers—many arts faculty are highly accomplished artists themselves. The School's staff consists of educators, administrators, and support staff who promote each student's mastery of their unique creative processes and support opportunities to collaborate across disciplines. Along with establishing a strong academic foundation, Ellington faculty and staff assist students to shape their own artistic careers. The majority of faculty are employed directly by Ellington, while some faculty are employed by DC Public Schools. PARENTS AND ALUMNI Both parents and alumni are actively engaged members of the Ellington community and have associations representing them—the School and Home Association of Duke Ellington (SHADE) and the Duke Ellington School of the Arts Alumni Association. SHADE serves as a unified body for the parents of students and acts as a liaison and representative of the School community at large. The Alumni Association is dedicated to serving alumni by providing social, educational, and professional opportunities and to supporting Ellington's artistic and academic mission. GOVERNANCE AND LEADERSHIP The DESAP Board serves as the governing body of Ellington. It consists of a dedicated and engaged 12-member Board of Directors comprised of representatives from the School's partners, the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, George Washington University, and the Ellington Fund, as well as a representatives of the faculty, parents and the community. The Head of School, Chief Development Officer, and Comptroller serve as ex-officio members of the Board and its committees. The DESAP Board provides Ellington with programmatic and strategic leadership. The current DESAP Board President is Charles K. Barber, Deputy General Counsel at George Washington University. Prior to joining GW, Mr. Barber served as Deputy General Counsel at Howard University and worked as an associate in the New York City firm of Debevoise & Plimpton. The Ellington Fund serves as the primary fundraising arm of the Ellington School. The Fund supports the School through comprehensive fundraising efforts, including individual gifts, direct mail appeals, corporate, government, and foundation grants, and special events such as the annual Performance Series of Legends. The Fund manages an endowment of approximately $21 million and also maintains financial oversight of the School. The incoming President of the Ellington Fund is Ari Q. Fitzgerald, a Partner at Hogan Lovells. Prior to joining Hogan Lovells in 2001, Mr. Fitzgerald served as a legal advisor to former FCC Chairman Bill Kennard, as well as deputy chief of the FCC's International Bureau. Mr. Fitzgerald also serves on the board of directors of Crown Castle International, a large, publicly owned operator of towers and other communications infrastructure, and on the advisory boards of several private technology companies and policy advocacy organizations. Ellington administrative leadership currently consists of a Head of School, a Chief Development Officer, a Director of Academic Affairs, a Director of School Administrative Operations, a Director of Artistic Affairs, a Director of Student Affairs, a Director of Operations and Collaborative Programming, and a Director of Admissions. The Comptroller and Chief Development Officer report directly to the Head of School and work closely with the treasurers of the Ellington Fund and DESAP. Head of School Duke Ellington School of the Arts Page 4 of 8 FINANCES The School has a consolidated budget of approximately $8.8 million for the 2015-2016 school year. In 2015, DC Public Schools provided approximately $6.19 million, which comprised 72.4 percent of the School's total operating funding in 2015. The Fund and other sources provided approximately $2.36 million. Over the years, funding from DC Public Schools to support Ellington's educational program has decreased and the Fund has increased its contribution in order to maintain the School's staffing and spending levels. ENROLLMENT For prospective students, the admissions process includes auditions or portfolio reviews for one or two arts majors. Each year 200 to 250 students advance past the auditions phase to the next phase of the admissions process, a comprehensive academic assessment. The final step of this selective process is the family interview. On an annual basis, Ellington receives 700 applications and admits 180 students as freshman and sophomores. The Director of Admissions leads Ellington's recruitment of students throughout the District of Columbia. While the majority of Ellington students are residents of the District of Columbia, non- resident students are eligible to attend with the payment of a per-pupil fee of $11,795 to DCPS. Ellington receives its funding for all students from DCPS based on a modified per-student formula. Through the School's local recruitment effort and selective admissions process, Ellington is able to maintain its ideal level of approximately 530 local students, although in its renovated facility in Georgetown the School will have room to grow to 600. ACADEMIC AND ARTS PROGRAM Ellington strives to provide academic courses that meet a rigorous standard toward college readiness. Ranked as one of DCPS's highest performing high schools, the School offers Advanced Placement courses in Calculus, Biology, Chemistry, US History, World History, Language and Literature, and World Language, as well as Honors and AP courses. The School's academic block meets from 8:30 am to 2:00 pm From 2:00 pm to 5:00 pm each weekday, students pursue their respective artistic discipline in studio classes, rehearsal sessions, and practice rooms. The curriculum is designed to prepare students for the 21st century arts industry by providing rigorous programming within their fields of study, while also cultivating students' abilities to transfer these skills to broader applications in life and other careers: critical thinking; Socratic questioning and reasoning; confidence and self-discovery; and technical development. Through a pre-professional training program, Ellington faculty promote students' mastery of their unique creative processes, provide opportunities to collaborate across disciplines, and expose students to prominent cultural leaders and artistic master classes in a variety of settings. In addition to being charged with maintaining a high GPA in a dual arts and academic training program, students commit to a demanding schedule as they perform and exhibit their work at various institutions throughout the year. Often noted as global citizens and young ambassadors of Head of School Duke Ellington School of the Arts Page 5 of 8 Washington, DC, Ellington students have participated in numerous performances at the Kennedy Center, the White House, embassies, national and international competitions and festivals, public and private high-profile events, and more. The School also offers educational travel to cities across the globe, including New York, Los Angeles, Madrid, Barcelona, Italy, Sweden, and Australia. THE CAMPUS Ellington has been located in the Classical Revival building at 35th and R streets in the Burleith neighborhood of Georgetown since 1974. In order to better address the needs of the School's dynamic arts program, the Classical Revival building, originally erected in 1898, is currently undergoing a renovation and expansion process set to be completed in the summer of 2017. During the renovation, the School's academic and arts programs are housed in two school buildings located in the U Street/Columbia Heights area near Howard University. When the renovation is completed, the Ellington community will transition back to its original Georgetown neighborhood and into a 21st century, world-class arts facility designed to support an innovative arts program, as well as maintain the historic character and integrity of the original building. More information on the campus renovation and the concept design is available here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fcd4hTLEGQg. CHALLENGES AND OPPORTUNITIES FOR THE NEXT HEAD OF SCHOOL The Head of School will be expected to bring strategic vision and enable artistic and academic innovation that enhances the School's ability to uphold its foundational mission. Specific challenges and opportunities for the next Head of School include: Unite Stakeholders around an Innovative Vision for Arts Education The Head of School must lead the Ellington community in weaving together the many outstanding qualities of the School into a powerful narrative and vision. Ellington has a rich history and distinctive strengths for the next Head of School to build upon. Chief among these attributes is a rigorous, student-centered dual curriculum arts program that serves a diverse student population. Ellington offers students remarkable opportunities for honing their artistic expression while gaining the academic preparation necessary to become well-educated and engaged citizens of the world. Many of the qualities that distinguish Ellington from its peers will require a Head of School to navigate political and cultural nuances created by its structure and history. As a public-private partnership governed by two separate boards, Ellington's next Head of School must be an astute and sophisticated strategist with the capacity to negotiate the perspectives of multiple stakeholders and align the necessary support around a shared vision. The next Head of School will unite the Ellington community around a shared narrative that powerfully communicates the compelling attributes of an Ellington education; creates a clear roadmap to further define and differentiate the School's approach to arts education in an increasingly competitive educational environment; and sets an aspirational vision for the future. Head of School Duke Ellington School of the Arts Page 6 of 8 Partner with the Ellington Fund to Develop a Sustainable Business Model The next Head of School will build on a strong foundation. Ellington's long-term sustainability depends on successful growth of its private philanthropic support and effective management of its current financial and human resources. The successful candidate must possess the ability to build strong management teams and execute broad, ambitious, and fiscally responsible plans as well as make difficult decisions. Familiarity with the current issues impacting public education and arts education is essential and strong business acumen and experience managing key aspects of the school enterprise are required for success in the role. The next Head of School will work closely with the Ellington Fund's Chief Development Officer and serve as the lead fundraiser and financial steward for the School. The Head of School will represent Ellington compellingly to donors and energize alumni, friends, foundations, and businesses to support and champion the School. The successful candidate will creatively build new networks and avenues for fundraising. Ellington's fiscal support comes from DCPS and the Ellington Fund. The Head of School must work with the leadership of both funding sources as well as senior leadership within the School to develop a sustainable financial model that will enable Ellington to embrace change, respond to new opportunities, create and enhance programs of distinction, and successfully navigate economic challenges. The Head of School will advocate effectively for Ellington within the DCPS framework, and will foster an entrepreneurial culture in which faculty and staff members are encouraged to pursue opportunities for resources to advance Ellington's mission. In a transparent fashion, the Head of School will face the fiscal environment of education and involve key stakeholders in discussions and actions on moving the School forward. Collaborate with Faculty to Enhance and Integrate the Dual Curriculum and Address the Needs of a Diverse Student Population Because of Ellington's extensive recruitment across the city and dedication to providing avenues to those who may not have otherwise received an opportunity to develop their artistic talents, the School's students arrive with a variety of educational and artistic backgrounds. No matter the background, Ellington provides its students with the rigorous academic preparation and artistic training to excel in their various postsecondary pursuits, as well as showcase their talents on both local and national stages. To that end, the Head of School is expected to collaborate with and lead a group of talented and dedicated faculty and staff in promoting an educational environment that not only fosters artistic excellence but also academic achievement, and addresses the social needs of its students. The Head of School will possess a deep knowledge of various modalities of secondary and arts education and will have the ability to empower both faculty and students to teach and learn creatively. Be a Visible and Engaged Member of the Greater Washington Community Serving as Ellington's primary ambassador and advocate for the School's mission, the Head of School is expected to be a visible and engaged member of the Ellington and Washington, DC communities. The Head of School will be tasked with maintaining and building on Ellington's relationships in the city and surrounding region, as well as communicating and partnering with other Head of School Duke Ellington School of the Arts Page 7 of 8 community leaders and like-minded institutions to promote arts education and cultural enrichment. Ellington has long been considered a treasured institution among District residents and the School remains an institutional leader in the arts, education, and community service. As such, the Head of School must serve as a dynamic exemplar of servant leadership and community engagement. Ellington also serves as a national and international leader in arts education. The Head of School is expected to build upon the School's reputation as an arts provider, cultural resource, and educational leader and engage with other arts leaders, institutions, and communities across both the country and the globe. The Head of School will also leverage Ellington's location in the heart of Washington, DC, a city with an exceptionally prominent legacy of artistic innovation and cultural enrichment, in attracting potential partners both near and far. Support the Transition to the Newly Renovated School during the 2017-2018 Academic Year Ellington's newly renovated space will be a point of attraction for many prospective students, faculty, and staff. As the School community prepares to transition into the new space for the 2017- 2018 academic year, the next Head of School will need to develop a plan for the most effective use of the new building. The Head of School must work with key campus stakeholders to execute a smooth transition into the renovated space, to evaluate existing academic programs, and to assess program needs. One area of particular importance is technology. State-of-the-art technology has been incorporated into the new building and the Head of School will need to work with senior administrators to ensure the technology is aligned with programmatic needs. To strengthen its competitive position, the Head of School will provide the necessary support to ensure that departments and programs stay current with technological advances in their fields. QUALIFICATIONS The ideal candidate will be well-rooted in the arts community and bring the following professional experience and personal characteristics: Passion for and dedication to Ellington's mission; A deep love of the arts and knowledge and understanding of art disciplines; A deep commitment to educating the next generation of aspiring young artists and future community leaders; Intellectual creativity, and a proven track record of bringing new, innovative ideas to fruition; A commitment to diversity, and a belief in high academic standards; A record of providing strategic leadership and effective management of an organization of talented professionals, including the ability to recruit and retain a strong faculty or staff, build strong teams, set clear priorities, and delegate effectively; Head of School Duke Ellington School of the Arts Page 8 of 8 Experience in an educational institution or arts organization; experience with a non-profit trustee-led institution; A relationship builder capable of commanding the respect and loyalty of donors, trustees, faculty, staff, students, parents, and organizational partners; Proven capacity to successfully raise money from a variety of sources; Extensive budgetary management experience; History of being an engaging ambassador with a multitude of constituencies and strategic partners, both locally and nationally; A naturally accessible and collaborative leadership style, coupled with the willingness to provide decisive leadership; A lively, engaging personality and a sense of humor; and An advanced degree (preferred). APPLICATION PROCEDURE Applicants are asked to send a cover letter and resume to the following web address: www.imsearch.com/5789. Inquiries and nominations may be submitted to the same web address or to the search firm representatives at the contact information below. Electronic submission of applications and correspondence is strongly preferred. Review of nominations and applications will begin immediately and will continue until the position is filled. Keight Kennedy, Senior Consultant Brian Nwachukwu, Associate Isaacson, Miller 1300 19th Street, NW, Suite 700 Washington, DC 20036 202-682-1504 Duke Ellington School of the Arts is an equal opportunity employer. Company Description Premier Arts High in US Many famous graduates, Dave Chapelle and Denyse Graves, predominantly African American

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