Elementary School Principal, Dolores Mission School

Website Dolores Mission School

A TK-8th grade Elementary School in the Jesuit tradition

Dolores Mission School, Los Angeles

Principal Job Description

Our Mission:

Dolores Mission School is a vibrant Catholic parish grade school (TK-8) committed to serving low-income families in Los Angeles. Together with the family, we strive to educate the whole child, academically, spiritually, physically, and morally, in a nurturing environment.
Our students and their families are part of a larger faith community with a rich cultural identity. As an integral part of a Jesuit parish, our goal is to empower our children to rise out of poverty by becoming educated leaders in their community, “women and men for and with others.”

About Us:

Dolores Mission Parish is a Roman Catholic Parish of the Los Angeles Archdiocese staffed by Jesuit priests for over 40 years. The parish cares for the spiritual, social, and material needs of its parishioners who come primarily from the immediate neighborhood, the poorest area of Boyle Heights. It has become known for its prophetic work among former gang members and is the birthplace of Homeboy Industries founded by Father Greg Boyle, S.J.. It continues to be known for its work for social justice on local, national, and global issues.

Dolores Mission School opened in 1950 and continues to serve the families who live in the local housing projects and the surrounding areas. Dolores Mission Church and School stand as strong pillars in the community and walk alongside the most vulnerable members of our community. In the last ten years, Dolores Mission School has become an example of a stellar inner-city school. As a Jesuit school in the Ignatian educational tradition students are taught to recognize how God is present in all things, all people, and in themselves. The academic programs of the school continue to expand and improve to serve the neediest children in our community. As a result, more students are attending college after high school. The impact of the school is creating systemic change in a community that has historically been disenfranchised.

Dolores Mission School consists of grades TK-8th and serves 208 children and 200 families. Our student population is 95% Latino and 5% African-American. More than 80% of the transitional kindergarten class is challenged with academic English vocabulary and primarily speak Spanish at home. Nearly 75% of families earn yearly incomes below $24K and 90% of students qualify for free or reduced breakfast and lunch.

At the heart of every outstanding school is a strong academic curriculum. Dolores Mission School is proud of its excellent core curriculum of Social Studies, Math, Science, and Language Arts and is rounded out with rich art, music, dance, technology, gardening, and physical education programs.

Strong leadership, amazing teachers, parents, friends, and community involvement help make Dolores Mission School a wonderful place where learning happens and students excel. Strong development efforts, a supportive school board, a network of Jesuit partners, and a caring community have helped to make Dolores Mission School a model of success.

Position Summary:

The elementary school Principal is a faithful Catholic and a man or woman for others who embodies the values of a Jesuit education and Ignatian spirituality. The Principal serves as the educational leader and inspires excellence in teaching and learning to positively impact the lives of students. The Principal understands that excellence requires an absolute commitment to educational quality and can help frame a compelling vision of Dolores Mission School’s future that will energize the campus community and other stakeholders to lend their support. The Principal effectively represents Dolores Mission School in the larger community.

The Principal is a leader who promotes development in the faith by implementing, coordinating, and overseeing the religious education program of the school; ensures the growth of every student by advocating, nurturing, and sustaining a school culture and holistic instructional program that is based on  Gospel values and results in high expectations for all students and staff professional growth; and promotes the success of all students by ensuring appropriate management relative to personnel, plant management, and collaboration among all stakeholders in addition to supporting the Director of Development in finance, fundraising and development, marketing and enrollment.

The Principal embodies the mission of the school and articulates the mission for all aspects of the school’s program and fosters the traditions, relationships, and practices that determine the school’s climate and culture. The Principal is responsible for the overall management of the school including the hiring, training, and supervising of faculty and staff in accordance with Archdiocesan policies, regulations, and procedures. The Principal is the spokesperson for the school with all its internal and external constituencies and partnerships including students, parents, faculty staff, parish, alumni, neighbors, business community, Jesuit partner organizations, governmental agencies, and local, regional and national organizations and accrediting agencies.

Though much of the work is properly delegated, the Principal will report to the Pastor, and has ultimate and overall responsibility to lead the overall vision for the school including in the areas of faith formation, academic excellence, curriculum and instruction, business, finance & stewardship, school board relations, policy, and internal and external partnership relations.  According to the Los Angeles Archdiocesan Handbook section Expectations for Candidates and  Principals (2017), Principals must demonstrate the capacity and openness to growth in order to effectively lead a Catholic elementary school in the areas that follow.

Faith, Vision, Identity

The Principal will know and be able to:

-Ensure that Dolores Mission School Vision and Mission are being accomplished.
-Ensures that Catholic and Ignatian Spirituality are ever present and alive in our school community and that Cura Personalis, or “Care for the Whole Person”permeates all aspects of school life (academic, student affairs, and athletics).
-Supports the Vice Principal in developing and deepening students’ and teachers’ familiarity with daily use of Ignatian  Spirituality
-Promotes the success of all students by acting with integrity, fairness, and in an ethical manner consistent with Catholic social teaching. Ensures that students, faculty, staff, and parents have an awareness of global family and social justice issues.
-Develops and maintains a collaborative culture with the pastor, vice principal, development director,  pastoral associate, and parish to foster a comprehensive learning environment.
-Ensures the implementation of a school-wide discipline policy consistent with the principles of conflict resolution and restorative justice practices in collaboration with the vice principal..

Strive for Excellence in Curriculum and Instruction

-Recruits, hires, trains, and supervises faculty and staff in accordance with archdiocesan guidelines, including the Principal’s Transition Inventory, and provides ongoing mentoring and evaluation. Foster professionalism, collegiality, and ethical conduct in the faculty and motivates faculty to achieve educational excellence.
-Leads the school community in delivering the highest quality curriculum yielding academic successes and holistic achievements for all students and practices critical reflection, and makes mission-driven and data-informed decisions.
-Seeks to fulfill priorities in the following areas of the National Standards and Benchmarks for Effective Catholic Elementary and Secondary Schools (NSBECS).
-Ensures the implementation of schoolwide assessment methods and practices to communicate student progress and direct the continuous review of curriculum and improvement of instructional practices.
-Leads the development and implementation of a shared vision for comprehensive integration of  technology to promote excellence and support transformation throughout the school
-Values, engages, and communicates appropriately and effectively with all stakeholders including school, community, and outside partners in supporting programs and opportunities.

Business, Finance, and  Stewardship

-Understands and manages school finances, including budget development as required by ADLA, ongoing oversight and projections, tuition program, census, and PSA, administering of the CEF program, and financial aid/tuition assistance program.
Demonstrates solid operational vitality for financial management and planning.
-Oversees all employment and human relations matters, such as contracts, salaries, benefits, job assignments, onboarding of personnel, job orientation, performance evaluation, retentions and dismissals, personnel records, employee handbooks, etc.
-Attends quarterly Parish Finance Council on behalf of the school and keeps the Council informed on all matters regarding school finances.
-Responsible for managing outside partnerships including those contracted with the school.
-In collaboration with the Pastor and Director of Development, assists in planning all major capital purchases, repairs, and building projects.

School Board Relations

-Serves as the key liaison and administrative partner to Dolores Mission School board and will provide critical updates and reports to the board that helps to keep them informed.
-Assists the board chair and/or executive committee in setting the annual calendar of board and committee meetings, meeting agendas, and discussion topics.
-Serves in  ex officio, non-­voting member capacity on the board and all board committees.
-Keeps the board and executive committee informed of all matters relating to the school through reports at board meetings and immediate communication following major school events or happenings.
-Seeks direction from the board on new initiatives and provides data to assist the board in its work.
-In collaboration with the Pastor, makes recommendations to the board for approval of the operating and capital budgets, including all categories of income and expenditure.
-Assists the School Board in the development of strategic, short, and long-term plans.
-Jointly with the board chair, sets annual goals for his/her performance and provides documentation materials for the board to use in her/his evaluation.

Overall Policy

-Serves as the top manager who oversees day-to-day operations of the school
-Provide input into periodic review of the philosophy and mission statement of the school.
-Oversees the completion of all official accreditations, Archdiocesan, and State of California reports.
-In coordination with the Vice Principal, oversees compliance of VIRTUS, Anti-Harassment training, and all other mandated state and archdiocesan requirements annually for all students, staff, and volunteers.

Physical Requirements

Occasional travel is expected to conferences, retreats, and professional development training.

The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to sit, walk, and drive. The employee is frequently required to reach with hands and arms. The employee must frequently lift and/or move up to 10  pounds and occasionally lift and/or move up to 25 pounds. Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, distance vision, color vision, peripheral vision, depth perception, and the ability to adjust focus.


Practicing Catholic in good standing with the Church
Bachelor’s Degree
Master’s Degree preferred
Master’s in School Leadership within 3 years of being hired
Valid CA credential (teaching and/or administrative)
Minimum of 5 years of teaching experience, and at least 2 years in a Catholic setting
Excellent verbal and written communication skills
Spanish language proficiency
Citizenship, residency, or work visa required

Salary and Benefits

The Principal’s annual salary will be commensurate with educational qualifications and prior experience. The salary range based on the Archdiocese of Los Angeles pay scale is between
$69,788 to $81,477 full time, exempt position.

Competitive Benefits Package

Interested applicants, please email cover letter and resume to [email protected]

To apply for this job please visit lacatholics.org.