Language Department Chair Job Description
Department Chairs lead and oversee the development and implementation of their departments’curriculum, pedagogy, and assessments in grades 5 - 12, and provide influence in curriculum decisions K-4. They also manage the departmental budget and are leaders in the wider school community by helping to advance strategic priorities as set by the school and in collaboration with the Department Chair Committee.
Department Chairs report directly to the Assistant Head for Academics in this role. They are also overseen by division heads both in relation to their teaching responsibilities and in issues related to each division.
Department Chairs typically teach one less section than other department members. between departments due to different demands of the role and different structures of
departmental teaching loads.
As program leaders department chairs use software or other tools & frameworks agreed upon by the school to:
1. Manage overall scope and sequence through effective communication: Lead department members in ensuring the proper flow of content and skills within the department, with reference to appropriate benchmarks or standards. Connect with others in three divisions, as appropriate, to develop a flow of content and skills across and between departments, divisions and programs. Ensure that information about curricula is exchanged fluidly between and within divisions.
2. Oversee course quality: Collect course syllabi and major assessments to review each course’s structure, scope and sequence. Ensure that each course is well designed and fits well with the goals of the department and the school. Lead departmental discussions and initiatives that will strengthen teachers’ skills, the department’s program and the school’s goals.
3. Oversee fairness: Periodically as needed, review each course’s major assignments and grading systems to ensure that assessment is consistent with the goals of the course, the department and the school. Make sure that both assessments and grading are fair and reasonably consistent between different instructors. Ensure that student placements are consistent with departmental guidelines and that parents are well communicated with in regards to placement decisions.
4. Play a role in ensuring the safety and wellness of students in the care of the department. Model appropriate boundaries and focus on student care. Support faculty, as necessary, in their student interactions. Provide timely feedback to resources outside of the department such as the School Psychologist and appropriate division head.
5. Manage resources: Maintain expenditures with departmental budgets, and plan operational and capital budgets for the upcoming year; direct the department’s book ordering process and ensure the efficacy of materials.
Personnel leadership includes using the systems and tools agreed upon by the school to:
1. Lead teachers’ evaluation and development: Conduct observations and evaluations of teachers, with particular emphasis on those who need more attention or who are due for a more in-depth review, including new teachers. Keep appropriate long-term records of all evaluation-related conversations. Remind teachers about following school policies relating to areas such as pedagogy, homework, grading, returning assessments, and record-keeping; follow up if they are not. Model a growth mindset by eliciting feedback from department members and responding appropriately to suggestions.
2. Lead conversations within and beyond the department: Run regular department meetings with purposeful agendas and effective follow up. Bring ideas to and from department chairs’ meetings. Meet with relevant division heads on an as-needed basis. Discuss, develop and recommend policy changes in department chairs’ meetings, with a view to the greater good of the community. Share ideas and initiatives to improve the school’s program. Represent the department at school functions, and with concerned parents, students and others, as needed. Talk with administrators if issues arise concerning programs in your field.
3. Find, deploy and support department members: Facilitate the hiring of new faculty members in collaboration with the Dean of Recruitment and collaborate with division heads to ensure that substitute teachers are brought in when necessary. Allocate teachers to classes each year. Support teachers’ professional development in line with the goals of the department and the school. Support teachers as their supervisor and colleague, and connect them to others who can help them with problems when appropriate. Help K-4 teachers in your discipline feel involved in the decisions of their MS/US colleagues; they have a foot in your department even though they don’t report to you.
4. Lead scheduling decisions as they pertain to your department and work with the head of scheduling when necessary to determine the appropriate placement of classes within the schedule. Be proactive in determining when new resources are needed to meet anticipated demand.
Strategic Plan Execution and Coordination
1. Have a role in moving the department forward in regards to strategic priorities of the school, especially as they pertain to strategic plan and diversity, equity and inclusion efforts.
2. Model to the broader community the values and expectations of the school.
3. Participate fully in the Department Chair Committee and collaborate with other department chairs in order to achieve strategic goals.
Internal candidates only. A cover letter and a copy of a recent resume should be sent to Ms. Dyann Connor at email@example.com