Northern Light School began as a Bay Area school by teachers for students, and it continues this tradition to this day. At Northern Light we believe that educators have a responsibility to prepare students for a world in which innovation, critical thinking, and the ability to work collaboratively are more prized than ever. This challenge requires new ways of thinking and being, for teachers just as much as students. Northern Light is excited to be part of the growing number of leading independent schools that are transforming education through embracing a teacher-powered leadership model. By empowering teachers to take ownership of their school's success, this tried-and-tested model creates a culture of collaboration and creativity that takes student learning to new heights.
In a traditional school model, the very people furthest removed from the classroom have the final say on what goes on in the classroom. A teacher-powered model turns that paradigm on its head. At NLS, teachers are entrusted with critical decisions regarding curriculum, personnel, and school culture. Because of this, administrative roles are structured differently than at most other institutions. All full-time teachers attend regular grade-band meetings and staff meetings, serve on committees, conduct teacher and course evaluations, and help fill the administrative needs of the school in a variety of ways.
In addition, there are several key leadership positions that take on added responsibility for ensuring school success.
Campus Coordinator - The individual who handles all scheduling and front office coordination and serves as an information hub.
Director of Business Operations - The individual who handles finances, insurance issues, and maintenance of the physical plant.
Director of Admissions and Marketing - The individual who oversees the admissions process and coordinates our marketing efforts.
Director of Development - The individual who coordinates all of the school's fundraising efforts throughout the year.
Faculty Leadership Team:
Director of Middle School Student Affairs - A teacher elected by Faculty and Staff as the main correspondent with Middle School students, families, and the outside community.
Director of Lower School Student Affairs - A teacher elected by Faculty and Staff as the main correspondent with Lower School students, families, and the outside community.
Director of Internal Faculty Affairs - A teacher elected by the Faculty and Staff to coordinate Professional Development and manage all documents and paperwork necessary for smooth school functioning.
Director of Personnel Faculty Affairs - A teacher elected by the Faculty and Staff to oversee personnel hiring and Faculty evaluations.
The leadership team is focused on addressing issues raised by staff members, students, and parents. In order to do so, they utilize the professional resources on staff and, when necessary, identify and bring in additional resources. In decision-making, they have one vote each, as do the other members of the Faculty. However, the leadership team, aforementioned, have the confidence of the Faculty and Staff to assimilate information and make certain key decisions when necessary.
To learn more about the success of teacher-powered schools, please visit Teacher Powered Schools.