Porter-Gaud School
Charleston, SC
Grades 1 - 12 with 860 students

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Porter-Gaud School is an Episcopal, independent, coeducational day school for 1,650 students in preschool through grade 12. The School is seeking a full-time Dean of Wellness and Upper School Counselor.  Our Upper School division is composed of grades 9 through 12.  The Dean of Wellness and Upper School Counselor will serve as the primary coordinator of wellness services for students and families. This position will serve as an equal dual role. As an Upper School Counselor, this position provides educational programs to students, families, and faculty to promote understanding of well-being in adolescents. As the Dean of Wellness, this position is responsible for bridging programming and communication across all three divisions to align a comprehensive, whole-person approach to maintaining and improving the mental, social, emotional, physical, and spiritual well-being and learning of all, in a healthy and safe school community. The Dean of Wellness and Upper School Counselor should be recognized as a visible and engaged campus leader who partners with school leadership, faculty, and outside partners to this end.  
The Dean of Wellness and Upper School Counselor will display a continuous commitment to developing the attitudes, knowledge, and skills (intercultural competence) to engage in appropriate and effective communication with students, colleagues, and families from diverse backgrounds and perspectives. We desire candidates who will contribute to the school’s efforts to continue creating a more inclusive and equitable community where all individuals can develop a sense of belonging.
Upper School Counselor Primary Duties and Responsibilities
  • Provide counseling support to students in grades 9-12 through self, teacher, or parent referral in partnership with the full-time Upper School Counselor
  • Provide crisis intervention and assessment for referral to outside professionals.
  • Serves as a resource to all faculty, staff, parents, and students for consultation and professional referrals as needed.
  • Provide mental health education and awareness to students, faculty, and administration.
  • Collaborate with professionals in the community to act as a liaison for students involved in treatment.
  • Participate in parent conferences when requested by teachers, the Upper School Division Head, or parents.
  • Attend all Upper School faculty meetings and Counseling Department meetings.
  • Serve as a member of the Upper School Student Support Team and Upper School Administrative Team.
  • Consult with administration and faculty to coordinate consistent support for students.
  • Facilitate alcohol and drug awareness and prevention education events for students and parents
  • Help facilitate and attend all Upper School Parent Milestone Dinners.
  • Perform other activities or duties as assigned on an as-needed basis by the Head of School or the Upper School Head.
Dean of Wellness Primary Duties and Responsibilities
  • Develop and implement a cross-divisional wellness strategy that aligns with the school’s mission, Episcopal Identity, the Vision of a Learner framework, and the Community Engagement and Belonging strategy.
  • Champion evidence-based programs and initiatives using internal data (surveys) and peer-reviewed empirical research that supports student and staff well-being.
  • Ensure the initiatives comply with applicable laws and regulations, minimizing exposure to legal action.
  • Assists the Upper, Middle, and Lower School counselors as needed.
  • Network with other school communities to share best practices.
  • Collaborate with other departments and organizations to ensure a holistic approach to wellness.
  • Advocate for policies and practices that prioritize wellness and promote a culture of well-being throughout the campus community, with noted attention toward underrepresented populations within the community.
  • Design, coordinate and oversee age-appropriate wellness programming in coordination with the Office of the Assistant Head for Academics that can occur both across and outside the curriculum, including but not limited to physical health, self-awareness, self-management, relationship skills (communication, consent, etc.), social awareness, social-emotional learning, sexual health education, alcohol & drug awareness prevention, stress management, etc.
  • Advise and direct Upper School health teachers and the Middle School Life 101 and Human Growth and Development programs on health and wellness curriculum to ensure that topics and instruction align with our overall wellness strategy.
  • Design programs to assure positive changes are sustainable and sustained.
  • Provide leadership and support that contribute to improved school culture.
  • Collaborate with school staff (including administration, school counselors, nurses, teachers, and classified school staff) to ensure implementation and alignment of wellness programs and services on site for students, faculty, staff, and families.
  • Develop and implement ongoing outreach and communications to school staff, students, parents, and community.
  • Build partnerships with outside organizations, such as healthcare providers, to enhance the well-being resources available to the campus community.
  • Provide guidance and support to faculty and staff who are addressing related concerns.
The successful candidate will possess
  • Strong interpersonal and leadership skills.
  • Empathy and patience.
  • Ability to express self clearly.
  • Ability to interact effectively and diplomatically with all internal and external constituencies of the School.
  • Ability to act as a team member and to exhibit initiative to benefit Porter-Gaud School.
  • Accuracy, integrity, and professionalism.
  • Ability to exhibit prompt, reliable, and sustainable attendance.
  • Accountability for individual job performance and behavior to include:
  • Desiring to achieve excellence in job performance and demonstrating initiative to improve.
  • Meeting deadlines for assigned and expected tasks.
  • Assuming responsibility for one’s actions.
  • Completing accurate records.
  • Demonstrating exercise of sound judgment and effective interpersonal relations.
  • Ability to work under stressful circumstances.
  • Ability to be flexible in working hours.
  • A systems-thinking approach to problem-solving.
Minimum Requirements
  • A Master’s Degree or higher in School Psychology, Social Work, Counseling or related field from an accredited college or university. Professional certification or licensure is required.
  • Previous counseling experience with adolescents, preferably in an educational setting.
  • Demonstrated proficiency in presenting to varied groups of students and/or adults in a classroom or meeting setting.
  • Knowledge and proficiency in counseling.
  • Demonstrated experience designing, organizing, and implementing wellness programming for a diverse population.
Reporting:  This position has a dual reporting structure. As an Upper School Counselor, this position reports directly to the Head of the Upper School and coordinates efforts with the Upper School Counselor. As the Dean of Wellness, this position reports directly to the Director of Community Engagement and Belonging and coordinates efforts with the chaplains, Lower and Middle School counselors, nurses, and Athletics Department.  

Already an active candidate? Contact your counselor!

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