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18 May 2023

School Network Staff Chief of Staff

Independence Mission Schools

Job Description

Organization Summary

Independence Mission Schools (IMS) provide a transformative Catholic education that develops students intellectually, emotionally, and spiritually and that provides children of all faiths across the City of Philadelphia with the opportunity to learn in an academically rigorous environment and to grow in a culture of love, setting them on the path to a promising future.


The vision of the IMS network is that their students will leave the school community emotionally and spiritually formed by IMS’s Catholic example, performing at or above grade level, and enrolled in an academically rigorous high school program ready to achieve their dreams.  IMS strives to become a top-tier academic destination for all children in Philadelphia.


During their first seven years, the IMS network has built the foundation of a successful private school network, serving 4,000+ students in 14 Pre-K through 8th grade schools.  IMS’s goal is to achieve best in class academics for all the schools and students in their network.


Position Summary

The Chief of Staff (COS) will be an active member of the Executive Leadership Team and a steward for the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and leadership engagement and collaboration.  In order to build the CEO’s capacity to serve as the face of IMS in engagement with external stakeholders, the COS will serve as a representative of the CEO across a variety of internal workstreams and projects.  The COS will lead the Operations, Finance, and Human Resources teams as they work across leadership, support internal communications planning and execution, Board management, and other workstreams and projects that cross the IMS teams and functions.  IMS would benefit from an experienced COS candidate, who has a track record of supporting executive leaders and working across many functions and with many stakeholders to maximize impact.  The COS will also serve as a champion of IMS’s vision both internally and externally.


The COS reports to the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and is a key member of the IMS Executive Leadership Team, which includes the Director of Human Resources, Deputy Chief of Operations, Deputy Chief of Finance, and Chief Development Officer.


IMS is an equal-opportunity employer with good benefits and an entrepreneurial, results-oriented work culture.


Duties and Responsibilities

Executive Leadership

  • Work with the CEO to develop, manage, and organize planning around IMS’s multi-year, detailed financial model, including position-specific annual staffing plans, detailed analysis of each revenue source and critical expense driver, “pro forma” income statements with line-item budgets for each school, and overall pro forma financials for individual schools and for IMS in the aggregate.
  • In partnership with the CEO align network-wide priorities, set, and implement an overarching strategic vision for the organization.
  • Serve as a thought partner to colleagues, help solve a variety of day-to-day challenges, and generate creative solutions for internal and external improvements.
  • Create and manage structures that support the CEO’s capacity to lead and collaborate effectively internally while freeing up more of her time to serve as the face of IMS to key external stakeholders.
  • Represent the CEO internally, serving as her voice or liaison in meetings and other internal engagements when necessary.
  • Plan and lead all Executive Leadership team meetings, ensuring that the team’s use of time is efficient, aligned with strategic priorities, and appropriately action oriented.
  • Support the development and maintenance of a strong Executive Team culture, with all team members reporting high levels of accountability, engagement, and belonging for themselves and others in meetings and other communication.
  • Collaborate with the Executive Team to prioritize and plan for institutional leadership supports and resources. Set and manage the budget for institutional leadership supports and resources.

Network Management and Support

  • Serve as the direct manager to the operations, finance, and human resources teams; provide support and guidance around best practices for managing and developing the entire staff to ensure IMS promotes a culture of professional growth and high achievement.
  • Ensure IMS achieves annual and multi-year financial sustainability goals and budget results.
  • Define operations excellence for IMS and develop dashboards to manage central office and school-based operations staff members to results.
  • Oversee management of IMS’s real estate portfolio, ensuring facility solutions and plans are in place integrating mission, finance, development, and facility perspectives
  • Oversee strategies for planning, implementation, and support of all technology required for IMS to achieve its educational and business goals.
  • Oversee network level Enrollment strategies for marketing, planning, and implementation.
  • Work in close collaboration with colleagues to develop and deliver best-in-class services to schools
  • Serve as a culture carrier for the network in building positive morale.
  • Set vision for and manage efficient and effective use of the team’s time and talents across major institutional priorities and workstreams described above.
  • Identify and lead, coordinate, or delegate responses to unforeseen circumstances (e.g., natural disaster, death of a colleague or student, etc.) in collaboration with the Executive Team and other key stakeholders.
  • Lead network-wide management of legal affairs, insurance, and other risk management strategies.
  • Define the steps and processes organizations must follow to satisfy the requirements of city, state, or Federal grant funding that have been awarded including tasks related to documentation, tracking, and project vendor management.


Board Management

  • Serve as the primary liaison to the IMS Board Secretary for communication and Board meeting scheduling for the IMS Management Team.
  • Ensure that financial information is made available to the management team and the Board for decision making in the best interest of IMS and its students and families.
  • Additional duties as assigned.



  • Commitment to IMS Catholic mission, vision, and core beliefs.
  • Commitment to serving children of all faiths in an urban environment with the belief that all students can learn.
  • Ability to lead and inspire others to deliver high performance.
  • Strong strategic thinking and planning skills, with the ability to leverage qualitative and quantitative information in decision-making.
  • Ability to plan and manage complex projects and develop effective systems or processes.
  • Ambitious and innovative mindset with a track record of translating strategy into action and delivering results.
  • Exceptional communicator: adept at sharing information both verbally and written in a way that resonates with a variety of audiences, both internally and externally.
  • Understanding of the complexity of managing school-based organizations, and the ability to communicate effectively with a full range of stakeholders involved in a school’s community.
  • Ability and desire to work with a socioeconomically and racially diverse community with the ability to connect and collaborate across lines of difference.
  • Demonstrated professionalism and responsibility, and a strong work ethic.
  • A positive, high-energy attitude, and a drive for personal excellence.
  • Flexible attitude, ability to work with urgency.


Education and Experience

  • Minimum of ten (10) years relevant work experience required.
  • Minimum of three (3) years of experience in a Chief of Staff or similar role working at the executive level in large and/or complex organizations required
  • Minimum of three (3) years of experience leading a team required; Experience with “dotted line” or indirect supervision preferred
  • Experience working or serving in a faith-based, Catholic School, preferred.
  • Experience in education, nonprofit, or higher education organizations required; Knowledge of or exposure to education preferred.
  • Experience cultivating partnerships with individuals and institutions across the public, private, and philanthropic sectors.
  • Experience effectively managing complex budgets and the strategic allocation of resources.


Physical Requirements

Ability to physically perform the duties and to work in the environmental conditions required such as:

  • Traveling to external meetings – valid driver’s license and/or access to transportation when necessary.
  • Functioning in office space – reaching file cabinets, filing, faxing, scanning, copying, typing, mailing, making phone calls.
  • Must be able to sit for up to two hours looking at a computer monitor, using a keyboard/mouse and typing.



Salary and benefits will be competitive and commensurate with experience.

How to Apply

Application Instructions Send cover letter and resume to Molly Farley, HR Consultant, at

Bureaus: Philadelphia. Job Categories: Full-Time. Job Types: School Network Staff. Salaries: 100,000 and above.