Friends Academy, a small, progressive Early Childhood - Eighth Grade co-educational independent school of 250 students in North Dartmouth, Massachusetts, seeks a mission-driven, experienced and collaborative Director of Finance and Operations. Reporting to the Head of School, the Director of Finance and Operations works in collaboration with other administrators to support the mission, vision and strategic direction of the school, including embracing the school's commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion. The new Director of Finance and Operations handles all operational systems and aspects of school finance as well as the strategic level of partnering with a dedicated senior leadership team.
With a yearly operating budget of approximately $5.8 million, the school awards $1.9 million in financial assistance each year. The 2019-20 Annual Fund raised more than $200,000. Friends Academy endowment funds total $3.5 million.
Friends Academy is in a strong financial position with stable (and increasing) enrollment and low debt, enabling the school’s leadership to plan proactively. Friends Academy’s incoming Director of Finance and Operations will have the opportunity to lead strategic financial planning to support a robust educational program. Friends Academy’s mission to “provide each student with an educational foundation that will instill the academic knowledge, skills, and understanding; responsible citizenship; respect for diversity and differences; and sense of well-being needed for a lifetime of learning and personal growth” will need a forward-thinking Director of Finance and Operations as part of the school’s leadership team.
Strategic priorities and opportunities for the Director of Finance and Operations include:
Be a thought partner with the Head of School and Board of Trustees to ensure the school’s long-term vitality and viability through responsible financial stewardship and increased revenue.
Collaborate with the Director of Development and the Director of External Programs to identify funding streams and strengthen the school’s financial position.
Collaborate with the Director of Admissions on financial aid considerations
Establish a system to enable the Division Heads and Directors to plan, manage, and monitor their budgets.
Plan for and facilitate the upkeep of the buildings and grounds.
Work with the Head of School in reconfiguring the Business Office systems and functions.
The Director of Finance and Operations will join a collaborative leadership team and provide day-to-day financial management, as well as strategic financial visioning, moving the school forward in its commitment to a strong academic program, diversity and the well-being of its students. The Director will work closely with the Head of School to develop strategies that will increase the School’s viability and sustainability, and develop and maintain a budget that reflects the School’s priorities and values. The Director will collaborate with the Directors of Admissions, External Programs, and Development to develop a strong team-based approach to the school’s revenue.
All areas of accounting, including developing and overseeing financial procedures and controls.
Prepare and present monthly financial statements and analysis of accounts.
Develop and monitor the annual financial budget.
Annual audit preparation, reporting and filing, including the 5500 and 990, and workers’ compensation.
Review and update vendor contracts (i.e. phones, copiers, mail machine, etc.)
Formulate financial aid award with the Financial Aid Director, the Head of School, and the Division Heads utilizing data from SSS by NAIS.
Maintain relationships with financial institutions; Administer bank arrangements, loan agreements, etc.
Be aware and knowledgeable of changes in State and Federal regulations affecting independent schools and non-profit organizations.
Oversee all legal and risk management matters relating to the school, its personnel, and student body.
Responsible for all aspects of payroll and tax filing related to payroll; including
Work with division heads on purchases of supplies, books, equipment, furniture, etc.
Responsible for all student enrollment contracts and billing.
Yearly data entry and reporting for BIIS, NBOA, NAIS, Commonfund, etc.
Participate in Administrative Team meetings.
Oversee and review the investment portfolio. Rebalance as needed to keep in line with the spending policy.
Approve all agreements concerning financial obligations including computer equipment and services..
Building and Grounds
Prepare and monitor maintenance plans (both long-term and short-term).
Prepare and monitor the safety of students, faculty/staff and buildings.
Execute bids, contracts, and leases.
Review Contractors’ licenses to ensure they are properly insured.
Responsible for renting the building after hours and ensuring the renters are properly insured.
Evaluate, purchase, and oversee property, liability, and workers’ compensation insurance programs.
Partner with outside Human Resources service provider to:
Generate Faculty and Staff employment contracts
Evaluate and supervise employee benefit programs
Formulate and revise employment policies and tax laws
Oversee all use of the school-owned vehicles and licensing of faculty and staff.
Coordinate and run all background checks.
Oversee the hiring and firing of all personnel.
Responsible for the maintenance and security of all personnel records.
Ensure the Nurse is up to date on all State and Federal guidelines and licenses.
Perform safety drills (i.e. Fire Drill, ALICE, etc.)
Work with the local fire department and police department.
Responsible for maintaining proper licenses and inspections for elevators.
Board of Trustees
Monitor and maintain the capital budget and financial aspects of new construction, including pre-construction costs.
Monitor and maintain the annual operating budget.
Responsible for preparing financial materials for the Finance Committee, Building & Grounds Committee, Investment Committee and Audit Committee.
Attend Board Meetings and answer questions pertaining to Financials and Building & Grounds related items.
Supervise and review professional growth for the Receptionist, IT Director, Plant Manager, Director of External Programs, and Nurse(s).
The Director of Finance and Operations will be a highly competent, organized, detail-oriented and strategic financial professional driven by the school’s mission and a collaborative problem solver with other school leaders.
The Director must possess a sense of humor, optimism, humility, empathy, excellent emotional intelligence and interpersonal and communication skills.
Education, experience and skills:
Bachelor’s degree in accounting or related field
5 years experience in a professional accounting environment.
Handle sensitive, confidential information appropriately.
Knowledge and experience with fund accounting, accounts payable, accounts receivable and payroll.
Proficient in Microsoft Word and Excel; Google Docs.
Knowledge and/or experience with building management and building codes
Ability to work with detailed information with a high degree of accuracy
Interested candidates must submit the following materials confidentially viahttp://bit.ly/Friends_Dir_FinOpsin one PDF attachment that includes in the following order:
Cover letter expressing interest in the Friends Academy Director of Finance and Operations position
Personal Statement: a one-page statement describing your professional and career arc
List of five references including name, title, phone number, email address and professional relationship (references are contacted only with the candidate's permission)
About Friends Academy
StratéGenius is the premier search firm for independent schools seeking diverse candidates for teaching and leadership positions. We partner with schools committed to diversity, equity and inclusion, connect them to our deep network of diverse educators and leaders, and match them with outstanding/exceptional talent. Our personalized approach to search helps schools and candidates focus in on their priorities and put their very best foot forward. StratéGenius is one of the very few BIPOC owned search firms dedicated to serving independent schools.