• Anywhere

The San Francisco School

Head of Lower School

The San Francisco School Job Announcement


Community. Diversity. Inclusion. Creativity. Arts. Humanitarianism. Social justice. Love. Step on to the campus of The San Francisco School, and it’s easy to see examples everywhere showing why this school of 280 learners from age three through grade eight is so special. The school, with its adventure playground and large garden, sits in the heart of a vibrant urban neighborhood in San Francisco known as the Portola. For decades, the school has prioritized the arts, brought experiential and outdoor learning to life right on its campus, and helped everyone not only find but express their true identity. At The San Francisco School, students and staff are on a first-name basis with each other, as a way of honoring the equality of each member of this very special village.


After thirty illustrious years, the head of lower school is retiring at the end of this June. Without question the community seeks an early childhood and elementary school educator who will bring the same passion for the school’s mission. But as the school continues to live out its core set of values, it is also focused on exciting changes—some underway, some imminent—that are all inspired by a bold five-year strategic plan developed in 2017. To that end, the school is ready to welcome an administrator well versed in faculty professional development, change leadership, and instructional design. The next head of lower school will join a high-functioning leadership team that works in a collaborative manner to support deeply interconnected initiatives. This position reports to the head of school and starts July 1, 2020.


For more information please visit the following link, which contains the job opportunity statement and complete application instructions.







Post Date: November 7, 2019

Application Deadline: December 9, 2019 at 11:59pm PDT

On-site Final Round: January 6 – 10, 2020

Decision Announced: January 31, 2020

Start Date: July 1, 2020, or earlier by mutual agreement








  • Serve as an active and collaborative member of the administrative leadership team.
  • Together with the head of school, head of upper school and director of design, engineering and technology, collaborate on areas of strategic importance: the transitional continuity among the three divisions; both the schedule and preschool redesigns slated for 2020; the ongoing evolution of STEAM curriculum; the development of inspiring staff meetings that foster community; and the programmatic maintenance of inclusion, equity, and social justice as central values.
  • Serve on or lead committees as assigned.
  • Perform other duties as assigned.


Program Management


  • Lead the operations of the lower school, which includes preschool and grades K – 4.
  • Co-coordinate all-school coherence of curriculum, student life, and special programs.
  • Oversee and coordinate the hiring, supervision, and evaluation of staff as assigned.
  • Be a visible presence in all relevant areas of the lower school, and in particular know and be recognized by students and their parents and guardians in the lower school.
  • Oversee student success in the lower school, working with parents, guardians, students, and staff on issues of academic performance, social and emotional learning, and behavioral accountability.
  • Develop effective systems for parent and guardian communication and partnership.
  • Represent the lower school to prospective parents and guardians.


Professional Development


  • Lead, facilitate, and plan an array of professional development opportunities for staff—from informal classroom observations to all-school in-service events.
  • Support a culture of pedagogical reflection and instructional design, and serve as an engaged thought partner to staff as they continue to improve their craft.
  • Maintain an active presence in the local, regional, and national communities of independent school education.






Professional Qualifications:


  • Multiple years of experience as a preschool or elementary teacher
  • Experience as a school administrator leading trainings and major initiatives related to curriculum, pedagogy, and student experience—preferably at a progressive school offering early childhood, elementary, and middle school education
  • Experience designing, implementing, and improving co-curricular programs and events that connect directly to a school’s mission and values
  • Immersion in diversity work—both in training and in implementation—and a commitment to fostering culturally competent and inclusive classrooms
  • Experience guiding parents and guardians on sensitive student-related matters
  • Knowledge of accreditation standards as well as preschool licensing requirements
  • Experience with project-based learning and progressive education
  • Possession of a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university, which is a minimum requirement, though preferably possession of a graduate degree


Leadership and Personal Qualities:


  • Inspirational, pragmatic, diplomatic, and patient leadership that honors the core values of SFS, but also encourages risk-taking aligned with the school’s strategic plan
  • Authentic empathy, warmth, and collegiality, and an ability to spread these qualities across an entire staff
  • A passion for inspiring programmatic change, balanced with a judicious understanding that successful innovation at a progressive school requires establishing lasting peer-to-peer relationships
  • Savvy communication and dynamic presentation skills—both written and oral
  • A collaborative, cooperative, and growth-oriented mindset
  • Enthusiasm for students and teachers to pursue their passions, talents, and interests, both in and out of the traditional classroom
  • A vision that is aligned with the needs of a dynamic and diverse staff
  • A love of learning and love of school, and a willingness to support unique and unpredictable learning journeys of both young students and staff







For more information please visit the following link, which contains the job opportunity statement and complete application instructions.



To apply for this job please visit www.12MRecruiting.com.