Mount has bulked up its academic team with new “academic directors” to support teachers, ensure high-quality instruction, and promote continuous improvement.
The directors are the management team for new Principal Julie Beauvais. They will focus on long-term planning and development in grades 6-12 while department heads focus on daily operations. The directors’ responsibilities include supervising the departments in their subject areas from grades 6-12, mentoring and supporting teachers, doing classroom walkthroughs, facilitating performance assessment reviews, and acting as liaisons between teachers and administrators.
They will also help ensure curriculum has a cumulative effect from grades 6-12, with each successive year building on what students learned in previous years.
The school has appointed academic directors in four academic areas: John Guevremont, English and world language; Joseph O’Neill, social studies and religious studies; Jennifer Sylvestre, STEM (science, technology, engineering and math); Marc Blanchette, fine arts and physical education. There are also three directors in specialty areas: Julie Coutu academic support; Lisa Tenreiro, school counseling; and Paulette Metivier, the middle school. The directors average 27 years of experience in education.
The academic directors have already laid out goals for the 2019-20. They include expanding one-to-one instruction; adding a contemporary music program; exposing students to real-life reading, writing and speaking experiences; increasing cooperation between subject areas; developing critical thinking skills; and sharing teaching techniques.
“The academic directors are a new layer of leaders who can focus on strategic issues,” Ms. Beauvais said. “They will be in the classrooms supporting teachers with instruction, helping them in areas they want to grow and offering advice. We will have the flexibility to respond to new needs as they arise so we can ensure every student has a comprehensive academic experience.”
Mount has steadily expanded its academic offerings over the last three years by adding onto the traditional academic areas and launching innovative new programs. Since 2017, Mount has added AP statistics to the math curriculum; marine biology and biotechnology to science; comparative literature, global classics, literature in film, science fiction and philosophy, writing and public speaking to English.
It also started a new business program, the Sur La Glace figure skating program, the string music program and the residential program. The recently expanded fine arts program has already started reaching out to perform for community groups.
“The academic directors create greater leadership capacity to support growth and usher in more. As we work to build leadership capacity in our school, it is imperative that administrators support our leaders. As such, we are focusing on leadership development to grow the potential of the academic directors,” Ms. Beauvais said.