Job Summary

We are looking for an experienced, senior dynamic leader with the ability to continue our tradition of producing the highest academic outcomes for some of the hardest to reach girls while also serving as a strong community leader.

  • Minimum Qualification: Masters
  • Experience Level: Management level
  • Experience Length: 10 years

Job Description/Requirements

The Women’s Institute for Secondary Education and Research (WISER) was founded and registered in 2007 as an independent Kenyan not-for-profit NGO. WISER believes that when girls thrive, we all thrive. We accomplish this by empowering girls and communities through transformative education and wholistic health.

WISER is hiring a principal for its flagship program, a private secondary boarding school in Muhuru Bay for underserved girls. The 8.5-acre campus is located 67 km west of Migori town centre, on the shore of Lake Victoria. The school opened in 2010, currently has a capacity of 240 students and is expanding to 360 as it implements the new CBC curriculum and builds a junior-secondary school. Since opening and despite working in a region with low KCPE scores, all students graduating from the WISER secondary school have passed the KCSE and 98% have continued on to tertiary education.  Three-quarters of the student enrollment is reserved for students attending primary school in the Muhuru Zone on full scholarship and one quarter is from across Kenya on partial scholarships.

We are looking for an experienced, senior dynamic leader with the ability to continue our tradition of producing the highest academic outcomes for some of the hardest to reach girls while also serving as a strong community leader.

The successful applicant will
•    Have a Masters’ degree in education, management, counseling or another appropriate field and 10 years of experience as a principal. Candidates with Bachelor’s degree in education and significant leadership experience will be considered.
•    Have a commitment to new pedagogies, curricula and social innovation to support the academic and psychosocial needs of the students.
•    Be committed to creating a school atmosphere that is safe, respectful and supportive of the girl-child as well as a commitment to zero sexual harassment in any WISER programs. She will also be willing to educate students, faculty, staff, and the wider community on the rights of girls to safe education and health.
•    Have experience working with international organizations or schools.
•    Have strong oral and written skills in English and be able to effectively communicate with parents in the local language.
•    Be TSC certified.

Applicants should also be able to demonstrate or document the following skills and competencies:
•    Management skills
: Strong management skills are essential to running an effective school. Teachers need to trust that the operations of the school are well looked after, so they can focus on the students and pedagogical innovation. Teachers should also feel like the principal is going to back them up when they refer students for disciplinary action. Teachers will also know that the principal will hold them to the high level of professional and personal behavior outlined in our policies for faculty-student interaction. 
•    Communication skills: Principals need to communicate effectively and productively with students, teachers, parents, and community stakeholders and diffuse any arguments or tense situations.
•    Critical-thinking skills: Principals analyze student test results and testing procedures to determine if improvements are needed. They must assess available options to help students achieve the best results and work with teachers to develop new educational methods to improve performance.
•    Decision-making skills: Principals must consider many factors when they make decisions because they have responsibility for students, staff, and the school's overall operation as well as the school’s reputation in the community
•    Interpersonal skills: Principals work with a variety of people including teachers, parents, administrators, government officials, and community members. They must be able to maintain positive working relationships with all constituencies.
•    Leadership skills: Principals are tasked with setting educational goals and establishing policies and procedures for their school, and must motivate staff and other involved parties to achieve those goals.
•    Pedagogical innovation and creativity: Our Principal needs a commitment to new pedagogies, curricular and social innovation, and to creating a school atmosphere that is safe, respectful and supportive of the girl-child. 

The Principal will be invited to Board meetings to report on the school’s academic progress and achievement as well as campus functioning and any community programs she oversees. She will implement the Board’s resolutions and policies and the school’s administrative procedures. The school’s and Principal’s performance will be evaluated by the NGO Board of Directors biannually based on academic performance and growth and feedback from students, parents and community leaders.  

Responsibilities:

Administrative:

•    Serve as the School Principal and report to the NGO Board of Directors.
•    Administer school and community programs in accordance with board policies, statutory requirements, administrative rules and regulations, and consistent with the school curriculum.
•    Allocate and manage human resources including school and campus staff management, hiring new personnel, professional development, evaluating staff, and recommending the hiring of key local Muhuru Bay personnel for the Board’s approval.
•    Promote clear communication with the staff, students and the extended school community to create a positive and inclusive school environment and promoting the school to the wider community.
•    Foster a positive relationship with the Kenyan government and national and international educational communities.
•    Represent our school at conferences and other events, occasionally internationally; network with relevant administrators and agencies to remain abreast of relevant advances in education.
•    Work in liaison with the Country Manager and other WISER staff to enhance or foster productivity of NGO programs.
•    Develop an annual school budget and present it to the Board for approval according to established principles and procedures, assuring expenditures are under budgetary control, implementing the school financial policies to ensure healthy financial operations, and overseeing the operation and maintenance of school property. 
•    Participate in fundraising events to represent the school and community needs as required.
•    Direct and evaluate all phases of fiscal and business services including the maintaining, operating, and planning of school facilities, supervising transportation, and ensuring the purchasing and dispensing of teaching supplies in accordance with school approval and purchasing procedures.
•    Serve as the senior on-site manager of facilities and operations. As the organizational leader living on campus the Principal is in charge of the support staff and all smooth operations of campus infrastructure.
•    Ensure appropriate data collection on student activities and outcomes in conjunction with NGO staff to inform all critical stakeholders and donors.
•    Oversee all community engagement to ensure a strong, transparent and healthy relationship between the school and the community.
•    Ensure appropriate compliance and risk management for all school and community based activities.

Academic
•    Ensure measurable growth and high standards for performance for all WISER students in preparation for their KCSE exam and post-secondary opportunities;
•    Adjust student preparation and support strategies as needed as Kenya eliminates the KCSE and introduces new testing procedures alongside the CBC;
•    Prepare students for admission into university, college, and post-secondary opportunities within Kenya and abroad through a commitment to high expectations;
•    Serve as a consultant to the NGO Board of Directors on current educational practices and trends;
•    Remain professionally current by meeting the continuing educational requirements as specified by the Kenyan National Curriculum.
•    Promote and strengthen the school’s reputation locally and internationally; Represent WISER in local and regional gatherings and committees, including gatherings of Principals in Nyatike sub-county, critical community events in Muhuru Bay to which principals are invited, and, on occasion, funder-driven events and workshops;
•    Fusing the Kenyan national curriculum with special courses or programs that help girls become successful after graduation, whether or not they enroll in university.
•    Continue to innovate the WISER model for secondary education of drastically improving the performance of incoming students with a rigorous curriculum, strong psychosocial support, and an unwavering dedication to excellence.
•    Work with a set of secondary schools and universities around the world for cultural exchanges and pedagogical innovation, including hosting international partners.
•    Live on campus when school is in session, providing a role model to the teaching staff.

Contract length: 4 years.

Benefits
•    Opportunities to work with international educators, experts in girls’ education, and program innovators, with the possibilities of international trips to represent WISER.
•    Participate in Amplify Girls, (https://www.amplifygirls.org/) a consortium of 21 organizations to network with other educators and leaders in the field of girls’ education and empowerment in East Africa.

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