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Chief Academic Officer

Delano, CA, USA | The Wonderful Company

  • Industry:
    Consumer Products
  • Position Type:
  • Functions:
    General Management
  • Experience:
    10-12 years
Job Description:
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Wonderful College Prep Academy is seeking a leader to foster academic excellence throughout our schools so that we can fully realize our mission of preparing students for the best universities throughout the country to pursue promising careers. The Academy is located on two, new state-of-the-art campuses, Kindergarten through Grade 12 in Delano, serving 2000 students, and Kindergarten through Grade 9 in Lost Hills, serving 400 students. One governing board oversees both LEAs Reporting to the Superintendent, the Chief Academic Officer is responsible for ensuring all academic staff are best positioned to meet their annual outcomes throughout the organization. The Chief Academic Officer sets and maintains strategic vision and direction for the Academy's instructional framework and approach to teaching and learning. The CAO is the leader, spokesperson, and resident expert on curriculum, instruction, pedagogy, and learning. This role will develop the short and long-term instructional vision for the Academy and will work to establish a culture of high expectation and shared responsibility for equitable access to high quality, rigorous curriculum and instruction. The CAO will identify student, school and organizational needs and priorities, and work to ensure closer alignment of Academy resources with these identified needs. The CAO will work with their leadership team to implement an instructional plan for the Academy that ensures effective teaching in every classroom and will create conditions that ensure systemic improvement of practice over time in every classroom.

Here's what you'll do:

Lead a student-focused academic leadership team, including:

Building Level Principals/Leaders

Literacy Director

STEM Director

Director of Special Education and Student Supports

Assessment coordinators

Inspire a world-class vision for academic excellence, while tracking, evaluating and supporting continuous improvement that ultimately prepares 100% of our students to thrive and complete degrees at competitive four-year universities.

Work in partnership with the superintendent to establish a forward-thinking vision for teaching, learning, leadership, achievement and impact that will ensure high levels of success for all students at WCPA and meet our targets for college, career and life success

Report, analyze and develop action plans for key data metrics to meet annual goals

Develop a cohesive, action-oriented system of interim and summative assessments

Ensure a robust student case-management system is fully executed and reviewed regularly

Ensure and foster consistent opportunities for high-quality instructional feedback to support reflection and action planning toward excellence. Develop an articulated academic program from Kindergarten through Grade 12, which through early college pathways includes awarding of Associates degrees in high school.

Adopt and oversee implementation of a rigorous college-prep academic program, including annual K-12 pacing plans, in all disciplines

Continuously support staff to utilize cutting edge and proven learning materials

Execute most effective research-based inclusionary learning materials for English learners and students with special needs

Oversee early college partnership with Bakersfield College to support Ag Business and emerging "Prep for All" pathways

Ensure academic programming at the Academy is compliant with all applicable federal, state and local laws and regulations. Serve as an integral member of the accreditation, audit and charter oversight teams.

Oversee teacher training, development, and evaluation.

The Chief Academic Officer will:

Foster interaction and collaboration between and among departments to ensure shared resources and supports are prioritized to meet individual school needs.

Manage annual Professional Development (PD) calendar

Develop and facilitate professional development for new hires, summer training, staff professional learning communities and ad-hoc training needs, in collaboration with school principals

Support instructional coaching throughout the schools

Facilitate and oversee university and higher education partnerships, including supporting new teacher programs, including Teacher Induction Programs, Teach for America Loyola Marymount and others.

Build pathways for "growing" teachers and instructional leadership at WCPA, including utilizing the current instructional support positions of Instructional Assistants, and Small Group Teachers, supporting them in their professional pathways.

Develop a system of student and family supports that positions every student to reach their full potential and meet ambitious academic outcome goals.

Set student and school culture and climate, creating supports to meet student needs while driving personal and academic excellence throughout all campuses

Other leadership responsibilities, as assigned.

Here's what you'll bring to the table:

Education and Experience:

Minimum of 10 years of leadership experience, at the school or district level; charter school experience preferred

Minimum of 5 years of teaching experience, preferably across multiple levels

Experience in a rural setting and/or serving high-risk populations a plus

Experience in an early college model or college preparation program (IB, etc.) preferred

Graduate of a recognized college or university with a master's degree or higher

Certificate of Clearance from the California Commission of Teaching credential, in lieu of active credential on file

A valid California Administrative Services credential preferred, but not required

Bilingual Spanish speaker preferred


Passion for working with traditionally underserved communities in high-performance settings

An entrepreneurial spirit capable of managing many complex tasks with competing priorities

Proven track record developing and delivering rigorous academic programs within challenging student settings

Strong leadership and execution abilities including goal-setting, strategic planning, prioritization and capacity-building

Excellent problem-solver

Organized and self-managed, able to drive toward outcomes

Dependable with excellent follow-through

Proven ability to collaborate and build relationships with internal and external stakeholders

Strong interpersonal and communication skills, orally and in writing

A self-reflective leader who is committed to ongoing learning and growth of self and others

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