Superintendent of Secondary Schools and Schools of Special Education
Archdiocese of Philadelphia – Office of Catholic Education
222 N. 17th Street Philadelphia, PA 19103
- The Archdiocese of Philadelphia seeks a seasoned educational leader to serve as its Superintendent of Secondary Schools and Schools of Special Education. This individual will be appointed by the Archbishop of Philadelphia.
- The Archdiocese of Philadelphia currently owns and operates a system of fifteen (15) secondary schools and three (3) schools of special education throughout the metropolitan area comprising the counties of Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, and Philadelphia. System wide enrollment stands at over 10,000 students. The candidate must be a practicing Catholic.
- He/she will exhibit a deep belief in the intrinsic lifelong value of a Catholic education joined with a willingness to embrace opportunities and overcome obstacles in a collaborative manner.
- He/she will possess appropriate credentials as outlined below along with business acumen and an ability to work with a broad array of benefactors and stakeholders who seek to support Catholic education in the Archdiocese.
- He/she will hold an unwavering commitment to preserve Catholic identity and to serve as an inspirational model of missionary discipleship as expressed by Pope Francis. He/she will also affirm academic excellence as central to the educational mission of the local Church. The successful candidate will demonstrate the ability to lead not only for the present, but also to envision the long-term landscape of Catholic secondary education in Philadelphia and surrounding counties and chart that course in a manner that leads to sustainability, viability, and growth.
- He/she will embrace an educational model that leads to the holistic formation of young men and women spiritually, academically, athletically, and socially. Every action undertaken in the exercise of his/her duties aligns with those responsibilities and the obligation to form young men and women of character who are equipped to be servant leaders for the world around them with the zealous heart of a missionary disciple. The position will report to the Chief Operating Officer (COO) for the Office of Catholic Education.
Primary Duties and Responsibilities
Academics and Catholic Identity
- Provide support and direction to all Archdiocesan Secondary Schools and Schools of Special Education in the areas of faith formation, quality and innovative educational programs, effective staffing practices, and teacher/staff development
- Serve as Chief Academic Officer (CAO) ensuring the delivery of top-tier academic offerings that lead to measurable excellence in student achievement
- Create and execute leadership/professional development programs for principals, administrators, and faculty throughout the system
- Analyze academic data as a means of evaluating student and educator achievement levels and setting benchmarks for strategic planning
- Work in collaboration with the COO for Secondary Schools and leadership within the Secondary Schools and Schools of Special Education in the planning and implementation of strategic management for the operations of individual schools along with their development efforts
- Work in close collaboration with the Office of the Vicar of Faith Formation for Youth and Young Adults to coordinate and develop programs and events in support of the enhancement of the religion curriculum in Catholic Schools
- Evangelize, in concert with the ministerial functions of the Archdiocese, by raising public awareness of the role and accomplishments of Catholic Schools as an important contributor to society and community
- Work with School Leadership and Archdiocesan Curriculum Committees, to evaluate, develop and implement standards-based curriculum representative of core values and cultural diversity
- Work closely with community partners including colleges and universities and funding organizations to develop strategic partnerships that will expand academic opportunities
- Assume responsibility for policy development and school achievement standards assuring effective implementation
- Provide support to each school in assuring accreditation standards are maintained
- Supervise Secondary School Principals in collaboration with School Presidents
- Collaborate with local school administrators and all divisions of the Office for Catholic Education Secondary Schools to ensure optimal operations at all Archdiocesan Secondary Schools and Schools of Special Education
- Directly supervise the Assistant Superintendents of Secondary Education and additional staff members in the Office of Catholic Education as assigned
- Collaborate with the Secretary for Elementary Education to mutually advance Catholic education and to coordinate programming
- Maintain an ongoing relationship with the Association of Catholic Teachers Local 1776; serve on the negotiating team responsible for producing a Labor Management Agreement and assist with the implementation of the same
- Other duties as may be assigned at the discretion of the Archbishop, Auxiliary Bishop responsible for Catholic Education, or his duly appointed designee, and the COO
- Work in conjunction with the COO for the Office of Catholic Education regarding financial strategy, budgeting, and operational effectiveness
- Work in collaboration with the Chief Communications Officer (CCO) for the Archdiocese of Philadelphia to assure a visible public presence of Archdiocesan high schools and their value
- Cultivate ongoing relationships with individual benefactors and foundations supporting the mission of Catholic education in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia
Key Opportunities and Challenges
- The next Superintendent must focus on long-term strategic planning with an eye on the challenges posed by demographic shifts in Catholic elementary schools and growing competition from charter schools. The leader must be equipped to articulate effectively the value-proposition of the Catholic schools in the Archdiocese
- The next Superintendent must balance the needs of the students with the needs of faculty and staff in negotiating terms of the Labor Management Agreement
- The next leader must be sensitive to the role that technology can play in advancing the mission of Catholic education, in making it accessible to more students and schools, and the role it can have in innovative curricular models
- The next leader must focus on the recruitment and retention of mission- aligned school leaders, including the implementation of a leadership succession-planning model at the school level
- The next Superintendent has the opportunity to work collaboratively and constructively with the Secretary of Elementary Education and local pastors, as needed, to build support for and alignment with the Catholic high schools
Essential Qualities and Qualifications
- Practicing Catholic in communion with the Church, who is faith-filled and Christ-centered
- An ability to build collaborative, working relationships across all levels of an organization such as a Catholic school system, traditional public school system, charter school, private school, or other educational organization
- Successful management experience along with a track record of initiating and managing growth
- A mindset of creativity and innovation
- A high level of emotional intelligence to build internal and external relationships to advance Catholic education
- A desire and ability to build a community of educational leaders across fifteen (15) Secondary Schools and three (3) Schools of Special Education with unique identities and offerings bound in the context of a unified system under the jurisdiction of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia
- A track record of creating an academic vision and strategy, recruiting high quality educators to implement that vision, and creating assessment tools to monitor progress
- Ability to demonstrate commitment to ensuring high academic achievement with proven experience in data-informed decision-making in a diverse, multicultural environment
- Experience and commitment to diversity to lead effectively academic programming and strategy
- A demonstrated track record of developing innovative approaches to student learning that recognize the inherent differences in how various student groups learn
- Experience in the development of training programs to enhance teacher competency with differentiated teaching models
- Have knowledge or experience in adaptive use technology to advance academic priorities and enhance academic competitiveness
- Demonstrate strong verbal and written communication skills inclusive of small and large group presentations
Experience Level and Educational Background Preferred
- Ten plus years of successful visionary top level leadership position in an educational setting with Catholic schools
- Graduate degree (terminal degree preferred) in education, educational leadership, educational administration, or related fields
- Experience as a President or Principal of a Secondary School, Catholic School experience preferred
- Eligibility for Pennsylvania Superintendent Certification
- Experience with development and implementation of curriculum
- History of improving and maintaining high academic performance and creating academic equity
- Commitment to working and contributing to a multi-cultural and ethnically diverse environment
- Excellent verbal and written communication skills
- Knowledge of technology best practices
- Success in community engagement and involvement
- Letter from current pastor certifying that the individual is a practicing Catholic in good standing
To apply, please submit the following documents as separate PDF attachments. They will be treated as confidential.
- Cover letter that aligns your experiences and skill set with the current needs of the Archdiocese as you understand them:
- Statement of Catholic educational philosophy
- Current resume with all appropriate dates included
- List of five (5) references to include names, relationships, phone numbers, and email address (No references will be contacted without your knowledge and approval)
- Letter from current pastor certifying that the individual is a practicing Catholic in good standing
- Please include “Archdiocese of Philadelphia” in the subject field
Assemble all of the application materials in one email to:
Kyle Pietrantonio, Partner
Partners in Mission School Leadership Search Solutions, LLC
8 Nicklaus Way | Mashpee, MA 02649
PA required clearances and Safe Environment Certification will be required before employment can begin.
As a religious organization, the Archdiocese of Philadelphia is also bound by Canon Law and Catholic teachings. For this reason, there may be occasions when an employee’s failure to adhere to the truths of the Catholic faith are a factor in employment-related decisions. In the event an employee fails to adhere to, or takes a position publicly that is contrary to, Catholic doctrine and teachings, or any policy or procedure maintained by the Archdiocese, the employee may be subject to disciplinary action up to and including termination of employment.
Employment practices will not be influenced by an individual’s legally protected status or any other basis as may be required by local, state and/or federal law as those laws apply to the Archdiocese.
Any employee with questions or concerns about any type of discrimination in the workplace is encouraged to bring these issues to the attention of Human Resources. Employees can raise concerns and make reports without fear of reprisal. Anyone found to be engaging in any type of unlawful discrimination will be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment.
The Archdiocese of Philadelphia is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer, and is committed to providing employment opportunities to all qualified applications without regards to race, color, religion, age, sex, national origin, disability or protected veteran status. If you are unable to use our online application process due to an impairment or disability, please contact the Office of Catholic Education at 215-587-3976.