Responsible to: Chair of the Pikuach Professional Advisory Group
Hours: 2/3 days per week, as required – a job share will be considered
Salary: £46,500 – £49,500 per annum Full Time Equivalent, depending on experience
Location: Agile working, including in schools as required
Holiday Entitlement: 20 days (pro-rata), plus Public Holidays and Jewish Festivals
Applicants must have the right to live and work in the UK.
Pikuach is the only inspection service accredited by the Department for Education (DfE) to undertake inspections of denominational religious education at Jewish schools in England. Pikuach is the statutory faith equivalent of Ofsted. It provides an inspection service across the breadth of the Jewish religious spectrum and has a diverse team of thirty inspectors, including five lead inspectors, all with in depth experience of Jewish education at senior level.
We are now seeking to appoint a new Executive Director to succeed the current consultant who has been acting as Director and is standing down after many years of service. The successful applicant will lead the next stage of the development of Pikuach, including the further implementation of the recent new Pikuach Inspection Framework (2021).
The purpose of this post is to:
- Provide strategic vision and guidance for Pikuach, in collaboration with the Professional Advisory Group, (PAG) ensuring that the inspection service is of the highest quality and continues to be at the forefront of Jewish educational thinking.
- Provide strategic leadership of the team of Pikuach Inspectors, ensuring professional development and quality assurance of inspectors’ work, including lead inspectors.
- Lead and manage the inspection process, including the schedule of inspections, selecting inspection teams and liaising with schools to enable them to be compliant with legislative requirements for denominational inspections.
- Lead effective communications with all relevant stakeholders, to enable the work of Pikuach to be effective and to enable the work of the inspection service to be enhanced and widely recognised.
Key Tasks and Responsibilities:
Strategic vision and guidance
- Provide strategic vision, in collaboration with the Professional Advisory Group for the continuing development of the Pikuach Inspection Service.
- Ensure, including regular reports to meetings, that the PAG is kept informed of outcomes and issues which emerge from inspections and the needs of future inspections.
- Maintain an up-to-date Pikuach Inspection Framework and be responsible for producing updates and relevant policies for service provision as required.
- Support the Chair of the PAG in ensuring the membership of the PAG remains representative of key stakeholder groups.
- Produce the annual Pikuach budget request for the Board of Deputies, in collaboration with the Chair of the PAG.
- Ensure that good practice in Jewish educational provision, identified through inspections, is recognised and disseminated to schools on a regular basis.
- Secure effective independent evaluation of the inspection service, as agreed with the PAG, when required.
- Seek to further broaden the range of Jewish schools to take advantage of Pikuach’s essential service of quality assurance of Jewish Studies.
- Recruitment and training of new inspectors when the time arises to maintain equilibrium and freshness across the service.
Leadership of Pikuach Inspection Team
- Lead the provision of professional development for the team of Pikuach Inspectors to encourage consistency in practice with inspection judgements.
- Quality assure the inspection process, both directly in schools and by reviewing reports in collaboration with the team of Lead Inspectors, and provide direction if issues arise during an inspection.
- Ensure the team of inspectors, including lead inspectors, is representative of the whole Jewish educational community and that sufficient numbers of inspectors are recruited, trained and deployed to meet inspection needs.
Leadership of Inspection Process
- Be responsible for the oversight of all aspects of the inspection provision. This will include the schedule, arrangement and quality assurance of inspections, to comply with statutory requirements.
- Ensure teams of inspectors are appointed to meet the projected needs, have sufficient and regular experience of inspections and be the arbiter for any queries the lead inspector may raise during inspections.
- Liaise with schools, informing them of their upcoming inspections and enabling the supply of all relevant information. This will include the provision of links for parental and student surveys and the introduction of the relevant lead inspector.
- Ensure that inspection reports are disseminated to schools when completed and uploaded on the Pikuach website within the allotted timescale.
- Direct quality assurance of all inspection reports to comply with Pikuach house style requirements, consistency of practice and the highest quality of written communication.
- Respond to any requests for consultation regarding other providers for denominational inspections of Jewish educational provision.
- Be the primary point of contact for communication with all relevant stakeholders, representing Pikuach at all times.
- As a member of the Board of Deputies team, maintain good liaison with professional colleagues and lay leadership where required, providing feedback to relevant committees as requested.
- Sustain and develop effective links with relevant national (and, where appropriate, international) organisations where relevant to the work of Pikuach. This will include the Department for Education, Ofsted, the inspection services of different faith groups, PaJeS and Jewish educational services in this country and abroad.
- Develop a strong public face for Pikuach in the press, at educational conferences and elsewhere as required, working closely with the Board of Deputies’ Communications Officer.
- Ensure the Pikuach website is up to date, accurate and a useful point of contact for educational providers.
- Keep up to date with developments in the national educational context and advise the PAG and inspectors accordingly, where this relates to inspection provision.
- Solid experience of the inspection process at senior level either from a Jewish or Ofsted perspective
- Graduate level or equivalent, preferably with a relevant educational qualification.
- Experience of working at senior level of leadership and management of educators, with evidence of having set clear direction and delivered results in these areas.
- Commitment to ensuring that inspections are rigorous, valid and reliable, command the confidence of parents, students and teachers, and meet the needs of a successful Jewish education system.
- Knowledge and understanding of relevant and up to date government legislation and statutory guidance governing school inspection, including Ofsted regulations.
- In-depth knowledge and understanding of the Jewish educational community, its institutions, structures and current challenges.
- An ability to make and manage difficult and sometimes unpopular decisions.
- Strong analytical and organisational skills, with ability to be creative.
- Proactive, innovative approach and constantly looking for improvement.
- Excellent organisational and analytical skills and attention to detail.
- Excellent interpersonal and relationship management skills with strong self-awareness.
- Excellent communication and presentation skills, both oral and written.
- Flexible and able to think quickly and move rapidly from one area of work to another.
- Good IT skills and ability to be able to self-support in order to carry out role.
- Understanding and previous experience of compiling strategic plans.
- Understanding of budget management and annual accounts and ability to interpret them.
This role will require some work on evenings and weekends, and some travel around England. This job description and person specification is not prescriptive; it merely outlines the key tasks and responsibilities of the post. The key tasks and responsibilities are subject to change. Any changes will be made in consultation with the post holder. This Job Description is subject to alteration in response to changes in legislation or Pikuach or Board of Deputies operational procedures.
The successful applicant should ideally be available to give some time from 1st December 2021 to allow handover from the current Director.
Closing Date: Wednesday 13th October (noon)
How to Apply: Please send a CV and covering letter, outlining how you meet the requirements set out in the person specification to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject heading Pikuach Executive Director. Please also indicate where you heard about the job.
w/b Monday 18th October 2021: First interviews