Job Posting #: SD 0232016AD
Submit application by: September 30, 2016


Executive Director, Education Foundation

Organization: SelfDesign Learning Foundation
Position: Executive Director
Location: Virtual / Remote (ideally British Columbia)

Organizational Overview

SELFDESIGN LEARNING FOUNDATION (SDLF) is a long-standing non-profit society with the purpose of offering educational services and support consistent with the philosophy and praxis of SelfDesign, as well as to further research and develop such praxis.

SelfDesign Learning Foundation is the Board Authority for SelfDesign Learning Community (SDLC), an extensive distributed educational program delivered via the internet in British Columbia. SDLC is a Class 1 Independent School certified and funded by the British Columbia Ministry of Education. SDLC is among the largest online distributed learning schools and personalized education programs in British Columbia, Canada. SelfDesign currently contracts over 200 BC certified educators for its educational program and several hundred support providers for Special Education. Last year it served over 2500 learners between ages 5-19. The Foundation also supports a small educational program outside of BC and is currently exploring the development of related business initiatives.

The vision of SDLF is to empower educators, learners and families to create what matters to them in their lives, in a socially aware and responsible manner. To this end, SDLF empowers educators to use effective educational methods and supports all learners on an individual basis in the home and community.

Mission of the Executive Director (ED)

The Executive Director will provide the overall direction and strategy for the Foundation to meet its vision. This exciting and dynamic role also includes leadership of the development and coordination of all program areas in this rapidly growing organization.

SDLF is completing the first stage of a 3-5 year strategy plan. The ED will be expected to initially develop a deep knowledge of the organization, the community, the philosophical basis of its approach to education, its core programs and operations. Using the current strategic plan as a basis, the ED will be expected to work with the SelfDesign Foundation Leadership Team and with key stakeholders to chart and implement the next stage of the Foundation’s strategic development.

The ED is responsible and accountable to the Board for the success of the organization in fulfilling its mission.

Key Accountabilities

  • Collaborate with the Board of Directors to review, develop and guide the strategic direction of the organization
  • Collaborate with and lead the Foundation Leadership Team to effectively implement the strategy and goals of the organization within the shifting BC political and education environment
  • Oversee the planning, implementation and evaluation of the organization’s programs and services
  • Ensure all programs meet the terms of contractual agreements they may have with government ministries and are in alignment with the organization’s purpose and strategy, reflecting the priorities of the Board
  • Prepare and operate within a comprehensive and balanced annual budget
  • Ensure the organization is compliant with all regulatory mandates
  • Identify and mitigate potential risks to the organization
  • Lead the exploration, research and development of new program directions and sources of revenue in alignment with the strategic direction of the organization
  • Become the main advocate and spokesperson for the SelfDesign brand and the brand promise
  • Publically represent the organization with the appropriate Board or Foundation Leadership Team members
  • Foster relationships with key stakeholders on behalf of the organization (i.e. government, education, media)


  • Appropriate university degree from a related program with a strong educational background and a passion for learning, advanced degree preferred
  • Proven financial acumen and understanding of the nuances and interrelationships of financial, human resources, management and regulatory compliance in a successful organization
  • Demonstrated successful management of complex organizations, including selection, development of people, systems and process and the ability to review, measure, plan, and successfully implement strategies and changes in an organization
  • Proficient in leading virtual teams

Key leadership and personal attributes

  • Communicates as a leader with strong written, oral and meeting facilitation
  • Listens deeply
  • Demonstrates integrity in word and action; highly self-aware, recognizing his/her own strengths and weaknesses
  • Creates a climate of accountability and where people are inspired to do their best
  • Creates cohesive and collaborative teams
  • Has a high degree of emotional intelligence and brings a sense of humour to their work
  • Manages conflict effectively
  • Makes sense of complex, high quality and sometimes discrepant information to effectively solve problems, using information to make decisions in the appropriate context

Our Culture:

SDLF and our educational programs are based on a philosophy of supporting learners to achieve autonomy by following their passions. We embrace the following attitudes and competencies in our SelfDesign culture:

  • Is passionate about learning
  • Approaches and maintains relationships without prejudice or demand
  • Is autonomous, caring, and socially responsible
  • Holds an attitude of possibilities rather than limitations
  • Is inclusive and collaborative
  • Holds a sense of curiosity

We will be looking for the development of a deeper understanding of SelfDesign premises and approach, including our coherent learning model.  As a model for self-practice, the ED will align with and model SD philosophy and learning strategies.

For additional information see SelfDesign Learning Foundation.

To Apply

Please read SelfDesign Description: Conceptual Understandings and provide (with your resume) a summary of why your work and life experiences would qualify you for leading those engaged in this important work. Send both to (quote job number SD 0232016AD) by Sept 30, 2016.

Thank you for applying; only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.

Confidentiality is essential as we are an educational institution. The successful candidate must consent to a background check.