Head of School – Benjamin Franklin High School (due by Feb 20, 2023)

Organization: Benjamin Franklin High School
Position: Head of School
Reports to: Board of Directors, Advocates for Academic Excellence in Education, Inc.
Location: New Orleans, LA
Application Deadline: February 20, 2023

To apply, please email your resume to [email protected] with a subject line of “Benjamin Franklin High School HOS.” Applications must be received by midnight CST on February 20, 2023.

Benjamin Franklin High School was founded in 1957 as a school for the academically advanced students of New Orleans. Inspired by the launch of Sputnik and the space race, Benjamin Franklin opened ahead of the National Defense Education Act, which put a new focus on science and mathematics and would aspire to attract the best educators teaching the brightest students in the city.
In 1963, Benjamin Franklin became the first desegregated public high school in the city. By 1965, Benjamin Franklin’s spirit of excellence had taken root, and the school saw 38 of its 96 seniors recognized by the National Merit Scholarship Corp. In 1990, the school moved to a new building on the New Orleans lakefront. Despite monumental damage in 2005 from Hurricane Katrina, the Benjamin Franklin community came together to raise $1.9 million in private funds to reopen as a public charter school. On Jan. 17, 2006, Benjamin Franklin High School was the first public high school in New Orleans to reopen after the storm.
In the years since, Benjamin Franklin High School, also known as “Franklin,” has worked hard to recruit new students and continue its traditions. Franklin currently has a robust and diverse student body of over 1,000 students from every neighborhood in the city. Students have access to curriculum taught at the honors, gifted/talented, and Advanced Placement levels, in addition to dual enrollment courses at the University of New Orleans. Franklin is consistently named one of the top schools in the state and ranked as one of the top charter schools in the U.S. One hundred percent of Franklin students gain admission to colleges and universities in Louisiana, the United States, and internationally.
Franklin remains committed to its mission to prepare students of high academic achievement to be successful in life. Additionally, Franklin considers diversity, access, equity, and inclusion a hallmark of its school environment. Although Franklin is a selective admissions school, there is no enrollment cap. The student body at Franklin is truly socioeconomically, ethnically, and culturally diverse.

Benjamin Franklin High School is seeking a proven, dynamic leader to serve as Head of School (HOS) and build upon the success of the past while defining the path ahead. The new HOS will galvanize the Franklin community around a vision for the future that integrates key foundational aspects of the school with new efforts, initiatives, and priorities. The HOS will be expected to embody, promote, and clarify the mission, vision, and goals of Franklin and shape the school’s next chapter.

  • The HOS will lead Franklin to accomplish the following goals:
    Create and deliver on a multi-year strategic plan in concert with the Board of Directors, faculty, staff, students, parents/families, alumni, and other key stakeholders to:

    • Continue driving strong student and alumni academic outcomes, including college preparation, acceptance, and matriculation;
    • Lead critical change management efforts in support of the school’s mission and vision;
    • Foster an inclusive, equitable, collaborative, and accountable organizational culture;
    • Harness school achievements and stakeholder synergies to ensure that Franklin continues to be one of the top schools locally and nationally.
  • Maintain a strong financial position with a budget surplus
  • Create a long-term plan for the facility in collaboration with the Orleans Parish School Board to ensure that Franklin can continue its policy of admitting all eligible students

The HOS will report to the Board of Directors and directly manage the leaders of the academics, operations, enrollment, and fundraising teams.

Strategic Leadership

  • Create a multi-year strategic plan in collaboration with the Board of Directors, Leadership
    Team, faculty, staff, students, families, alumni, and other key stakeholders of the Franklin
  • Ensure accountability across the organization by setting clear academic, operational, and
    financial goals and priorities aligned with the strategic plan
  • Work closely with the teachers’ union representative to maintain a culture of accountability and high morale among faculty

Team Management and Culture Building

  • Develop, coach, and retain a high-performing, diverse Leadership Team and manage them
    toward ambitious goals
  • Foster an inclusive and collaborative culture where everyone is working in support of the
    mission and vision of Franklin and feels supported, appreciated, and respected.
  • Create and execute strategies to attract and retain BIPOC educators

External Partnership, Engagement, and Sustainability

  • Externally champion the vision, mission, goals, and values of Franklin including speaking
    publicly, and communicating widely and prominently about the work and accomplishments of the school in the greater New Orleans community
  • Continue developing an engaged, diverse, and active Board in close partnership with the Board President
  • In collaboration with the Board of Directors and Leadership Team, ensure that Franklin has a strong long-term financial plan, and manage the organizational budget of approximately $12M
  • Interact on a regular basis with the Orleans Parish School Board (the authorizer) to ensure the long-term sustainability of the school
  • Work closely with the Board of Trustees of Friends of Franklin and the Director of
    Development to maximize fundraising in support of Franklin’s goals

The ideal HOS candidate will bring the following experiences, skills, and growth mindset/values:


  • At least 12 years of professional experience, including successfully leading a school or
    education entity/nonprofit to meet ambitious student achievement goals in the education
  • Experience successfully building, managing, developing, and supporting inclusive, high
    performing, diverse teams
  • Experience working with a diverse student population similar to Franklin’s
  • Track record of well-developed emotional intelligence, humility, empathy, and receptiveness to feedback
  • Experience leading the vision and direction for an organization and defining strategies to
    operationalize a vision
  • Track record of motivating and empowering others, and investing stakeholders in a vision
  • Successful change management experience in the education sector; experience
    creating/codifying systems to support change
  • Experience building and stewarding external partnerships and serving as the external face of an organization a plus
  • Experience managing an organizational budget and proven fundraising abilities required
  • Experience successfully working with boards preferred
  • Experience successfully teaching
  • A master’s degree from an accredited university required; advanced degree preferred


  • Ability to build an inclusive workplace where diversity is valued and leveraged to achieve the vision and mission of the school
  • Ability to create a strategic plan with clear metrics for success, and lead a team to execute the plan
  • Ability to collect different perspectives, make difficult decisions, and stand by them
  • Superior relationship management skills, and the ability to engage and inspire a variety of


  • Philosophical alignment with the mission and vision of Franklin and an appreciation for
    Franklin’s history and legacy
  • Results-driven leader with an outcomes orientation
  • Belief in the importance of engaging with and investing in students, families, and the broader school community
  • A deep-seated commitment to leading with integrity and transparency
  • Openness to innovation; ability to create space for teams/individuals to take risks and
    continuously improve
  • Collaborative and accessible leadership style; visible and engaged leader

We understand that there are many paths to acquiring experience, and that lived experience can provide important skills and abilities. Therefore, we welcome candidates from diverse and nontraditional backgrounds for this role, including those who have demonstrated transferable skills to carry out the major duties outlined in this job description.


Annual salary of $180,000 to $200,000, commensurate with experience.

To apply, please email your resume to [email protected] with a subject line of “Benjamin Franklin High School HOS.” Applications must be received by midnight CST on February 20, 2023.