Head of School, The Exploris School

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Deadline to Apply:

Friday, April 21, 2017, 5:00pm


Raleigh, NC
United States

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Job Description:


The Exploris School is seeking a highly qualified leader skilled at establishing relationships that cultivate an environment where innovation, teaching, and learning can flourish.

This individual must be committed to rigorous, relevant, relationship-based education and experiential, project-based learning that empowers students to build a connected, just and sustainable world. The ideal candidate will be skilled at articulating a long and short-term vision toward this goal. The Executive Director should embody our core values of curiosity, reflection, craftsmanship, engagement, collaboration, relationships, connections to nature, social empowerment, innovation, and balance.

The ideal candidate will have experience with instructional leadership and strong business acumen. Exploris seeks a systems-thinker who can put thoughtful solutions into action. The Executive Director must exhibit strength in communication and collaboration, believing that the best outcomes are achieved together. This person should be compassionate and have the ability to develop meaningful connections with teachers, students, parents, and other key stakeholders. The Executive Director must be confident in their ability to create a psychologically safe school culture in which individuals are respected and valued for what they bring to the group.

The Executive Director will eagerly lead The Exploris School into our next chapter. This includes, unifying our elementary and middle school campuses into one K-8 building in downtown Raleigh, with an anticipated opening of a net positive green building in the next two years. This move will increase the number of students served and staff needed. The ideal candidate will have a positive, thoughtful, experience-based approach to this transition and growth. This person will also have the skill-set necessary for opening a new building while positioning The Exploris Community to positively impact education across the street and around the world.

We seek candidates with the following qualifications:

  • Appreciation for the life and mind of the K-8 scholar and an understanding of what is needed to serve them well; a belief that the social and emotional curriculum is as important as the academic curriculum.
  • Passion for a project-based, interdisciplinary approach that engages directly with the community
  • Strong interpersonal skills with the ability to develop and nurture individuals and teams
  • Ability to work as a collaborative partner while also making and communicating administrative decisions
  • Ability to anticipate and solve problems, take advantage of opportunities and be a self-starter
  • Skillful reader, writer, and critical thinker who is attentive to current events that lead to opportunities for The Exploris School community to make sense of the world in meaningful ways
  • Teaching and leadership experience (ideally in grades K through 8) consistent with Exploris’ progressive, constructivist, exploratory and project-based educational philosophy
  • Knowledge and experience with budget management, capital campaigns, school operations, and charter school nuances
  • A belief that, given the right supports, all students can and want to learn
  • A “whatever it takes” attitude and disposition
  • A sense of humor and a high level of enthusiasm, flexibility, and spontaneity
  • A risk-taker with a growth mindset aimed at self-reflection and improvements that serve the community

Specifically, as The Executive Director of The Exploris School, you will provide leadership and direction by:

  • Pursuing the vision and executing the mission of the school
  • Maintaining high standards, and providing staff, students, and board with feedback and support to meet those standards
  • Providing general oversight of all The Exploris School activities, responsible for the day-to-day operations, and assuring a smoothly functioning, efficient charter school
  • Executing the desired actions of the School Board and providing tangible evidences or progress towards goals in monthly reports
  • Implementing and following policies and procedures; ensuring legal compliance
  • Facilitating the development and implementation of strategic and school improvement planning
  • Providing a safe environment for conducive for learning
  • Ensuring fiscal vitality through proper budgeting, accounting, auditing, and financial planning for the school and its employees
  • Establishing and implementing efficient, sustainable systems and structures
  • Identifying problems and opportunities and addressing them; facilitating discussion and deliberation
  • Serving as an active member of the Exploris Community including meetings, celebrations of learning, and social events
  • Actively listening to students, parents, staff, volunteers, donors, and the community, showing empathy, and taking appropriate action that aligns with the school mission and values
  • Conveying a professional and positive image and attitude regarding The Exploris School. Demonstrating commitment to continued professional growth and development. 
  • Serving as chief spokesperson for The Exploris School, ensuring proper representation of The Exploris School to the community
  • Driving an aggressive capital campaign over the next year and ensuring all mission based programs are well funded through annual fundraising


As an advocate for school innovation, The Exploris School hosts a myriad of educators from around the world for visits, tours, insight, and residencies. The school hosted over 300 people in 2016-2017. Our commitment to Global Education is exemplified through our partnerships with sister schools in Japan and Germany.

Teachers at Exploris are expected to participate in a community of shared leadership—co-teaching and caring for students; developing curriculum; leading students in service, travel, and fieldwork; and engaging in professional development. Our standards-based assessment system makes explicit the criteria by which success can be measured and documents the accomplishment of high academic and character standards.

How to Apply:

TO APPLY send the following information, attention Transition Committee to employment@exploris.org no later than 8:00 p.m. Eastern time on April 21, 2017.

  • Cover letter explaining why you would be a good fit
  • Comprehensive resume with relevant experiences
  • Responses to the following questions (Any format welcome including written, video, digital, etc.):
  1. What are the hallmarks of educational excellence, and how do we know if we have met them?
  2. How would you articulate your vision for educational excellence to a variety of stakeholders (board, staff, families, the broader community)?
  3. Choose the Exploris core value that most resonates with you right now. Describe how you exemplify this value and how you would cultivate it in others.

Compensation Information:


We offer a salary competitive with nearby districts, a retirement program (401(k)), and comprehensive health and disability insurance.