The Grand Rapids Public Schools Board of Education is in search of a new superintendent. This posting includes the search criteria established by the Board of Education. Please see the attached document.
Grand Rapids is a vibrant, innovative, award-winning city that is gaining national attention. Located in West Michigan, roughly 30 miles east of Lake Michigan, Grand Rapids is the second largest city in Michigan. It is consistently ranked among the “top ten” cities to live, work, and play including 10 Best Cities to Raise a Family, Most Affordable U.S. Cities to Buy a Home, 10 Best Mid-Sized Cities for Jobs, Top 10 Best Places to Live, Top Up and Coming Cities in the U.S., Top U.S. Cities for Growth, Top 12 Cities Leading the Way in Sustainability.
A historic furniture-manufacturing center, Grand Rapids is home to five of the world’s leading office furniture companies and is nicknamed “Furniture City”. It is also known as “River City” because of the landmark river for which it is named, and “Beer City” thanks to the large number of award-winning breweries in the region. The city and surrounding communities are economically diverse, based in health care, information technology, automotive, aviation, food service, higher education, and more.
Grand Rapids is widely recognized for its arts and cultural attractions including the world famous ArtPrize competition, Frederick Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park, Grand Rapids Public Museum, Grand Rapids Symphony, Grand Rapids Art Museum, Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts, Grand Rapids Opera, Grand Rapids Ballet, Civic Theatre, Circle Theater, Broadway GR, and more.
The area is also home to several minor league athletic teams including the Grand Rapids Griffins hockey, West Michigan Whitecaps baseball, Grand Rapids Drive basketball, and the Grand Rapids Football Club soccer, which are hosted at popular arenas around the city.
Grand Rapids is a foundation of education boasting the presence of several higher education institutions including Grand Valley State University, Calvin College, Aquinas College, Cornerstone University, Michigan State University’s College of Human Medicine, Davenport University, Ferris State University/Kendall College of Art and Design, Kuyper College, and Grand Rapids Community College.
The core of education in Grand Rapids comes from Grand Rapids Public Schools (GRPS).
GRPS is Michigan’s seventh largest public school district and the third largest employer in the City of Grand Rapids, serving nearly 17,000 students with 2,700 employees, including 1,100 dedicated teachers. The student population represents 55 countries with 54 different languages spoken, creating a value-added educational experience and benefit that is above and beyond a basic education.
For more than 150 years, GRPS has served the students and families of Grand Rapids. In 2012, GRPS embarked on a Transformation Plan designed to expand what’s working, invest in talent retention, recruitment, and development, and create a culture of stability and growth. The success of the GRPS Transformation Plan has gained the district state and national attention for significant increases in graduation rates, college readiness, advanced placement, and student attendance.
GRPS is proud to offer the largest selection of school choices in the region including neighborhood schools, theme schools, Centers of Innovation, alternative education, charter, and center-based special education schools.
Grand Rapids Schools Superintendent Selection Criteria
The Grand Rapids Public School District is seeking a strong, collaborative leader to work with the board, staff, and community to create a successful educational experience for all students. The Board of Education has identified the following criteria for selecting its next superintendent:
Results-Oriented with a proven track record of improving urban education and executing strategic plan
Develops strategic plan with all stakeholders and inspires others toward the shared district vision
Identifies and prioritizes both short-term and long-term goals
Identifies emerging trends, anticipates their impact, and develops strategies to address them
Progressive with technology and able to integrate into the learning process and operational systems as appropriate
Collaborative decision-maker/leader and follows through on decisions
Explains district decisions and provides feedback to stakeholders
Respects, values, recognizes, and supports all staff members
Ensures the excellent management of operations and facilities
Develops and empowers the leadership team and school improvement teams of the district
A Master’s Degree is required, a Ph.D. or Ed.D. is preferred
Strong background in K-12 education, administration, and instruction
Excellent knowledge of curriculum process and pedagogy
Record of success in past positions including improving achievement for all students
Uses data driven strategies in decision-making processes and curriculum development
Values professional development and will identify and develop leadership opportunities
Engages and responds to community
Provides instructional leadership for students with different abilities and interests
Politically savvy and advocates for public education at the local, county, and state levels
Passionate and effective in working with English Language Learner students
Understanding of, value for, and leadership experience in culturally diverse educational settings
Experience in working with career focused academies, CTE, and work-based learning programming
Honest, ethical, and transparent
Builds trust in the school district and community
Skilled communicator and effective listener
Visible, approachable, and accessible to staff, students and community
Treats others with empathy and respect
Displays strong leadership skills that can build support with staff and community
Will become part of the community
Confident, collaborative, strong team leader
About Michigan Association of School Boards
The Michigan Association of School Boards provides quality educational leadership services to all Michigan boards of education, and advocates for student achievement and public education.
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