Skip Ribbon Commands
Skip to main content
Sign In
Skip Navigation LinksADLA Administrative Handbook > Chapter 3 - School Governance > 3.3 - Administrative Structure of High Schools > 3.3.2 - Administrative Structure of Archdiocesan and Parish High Schools

Print this topic

​​​​​​Administrative Structure of Archdiocesan and Parish High Schools

Archdiocesan and parish high schools have the following administrative structures:​​

  • President and principal
  • Principal only
​​President and Principal Model​ or Principal Only Model

If an archdiocesan high school wishes to adopt the president and principal model for administration, the school must consult the Department of C​atholic Schools and obtain its approval. Schools considering this model must have a well-established consul​tative school board​​, in accordance with the Archdioce​​san and Parish High Schools Consultative School Board (CSB) Bylaws.  ​See "High School President"​ in the High School Job Descriptions.
In an archdiocesan high school, the superintendent of Catholic schools approves the employment of a new principal or president, following a recommendation by the search committee after a formal interview process or, as needed, the Department of Catholic Schools may make a direct appointment. With limited exceptions, in a parish high school, the principal or president is employed by the pastor in consultation with the staff of the Department of Catholic Schools and the employment is confirmed by the superintendent of Catholic schools.​
In an archdiocesan high school, if a president or principal position needs to be filled on a temporary basis, the Department of Catholic Schools shall appoint an interim president or principal with the necessary professional, academic, and administrative qualifications and experience. In a parish high school, the pastor, in consultation with the Department of Catholic Schools, shall appoint the interim president or principal.

See "High School Principal"​ in the High Scho​ol Job Descriptions and see Installation of ​a Principal within Mass.

When a high school changes principals, the outgoing principal is required to complete the Principal’s Transition Inventory and to share and discuss it with the incoming principal and regional superintendent, providing all documentation that is needed to effect a smooth transition in leadership.​

Evaluation of Presidents and Principals of Archdiocesan High Schools

Presidents and principals are evaluated by their regional superintendent from the Department of Catholic Schools through a process prescribed by the Department of Catholic Schools. See the High School Principal​'s Evaluation and Addendum Checklist and the High School President​'s Eva​luation and Addendum Checklist​.

With limited exceptions, employment of presidents and principals is for one year only with the possibility of rehire. Any exceptions must be approved by the superintendent of Catholic Schools. The archdiocese will notify the presidents and principals by May 15 if they will be rehired. If the president or principal wishes to be considered for employment for an additional year, the president or principal will so notify the Department of Catholic Schools in writing on the form requested by the regional superintendent ​on or about February 15. See the High School Princi​pal's Timeline.​​

Vice Principals and Assistant Principals

Each high school may have one or more vice principals and/or assistant principals, as needed. Vice principal(s) and assistant principal(s) are appointed by the principal after the candidate has been interviewed and approved by the regional superintendent of the Department of Catholi​c Schools. Appointments are for one year, with the possibility but no assurance of a new contract.

The vice/assistant principal shares in the educational and administrative leadership of the school and is responsible for performing duties as assigned by the principal. The vice/assistant principal must be a knowledgeable and practicing Catholic with a thorough understanding of the commitment to the Catholic philosophy of education.

In th​e absence of the principal, the vice/assistant principal assumes responsibility for the school. High school principals and vice/assistant principals may not coach or serve on their high school's coaching staff.

​See "High School Vice Principal"​ in the High School Job Descriptions.

Deans, Guidance Directors, Activities Directors, and Athletic Directors

After consultation with the high school staff in the Department of Catholic Schools, each principal appoints administrators as the size and proper operation of the school requires. Specific positions, such as those of the dean, guidance director, activities director, and athletic director, may be assigned to an vice/assistant principal. The principal reserves the right to assign or reassign duties to best meet the overall needs of the school community.

The principal and the administration design and publish high school job descriptions that clearly indicate the lines of accountability and the process used in evaluating each administrator. The regional superintendents periodically review this organizational structure.

​See "High School Dean of Students," "High School Student Activities Director," and "High School Athletic Director"​ in the High School Job Descriptions.

​Department Chairpersons

The principal appoints department chairpersons. In addition to the qualities expected of all Catholic school teachers, each chairperson should exercise a leadership role in the school and should be an experienced teacher with an academic background in that department's course content and methodology.

The principal reserves the right to assign or reassign duties, organize or restructure a department, or add or drop programs to best meet the overall needs of the school community.

Chairpersons are members of the curriculum committee that is advisory to the principal.

​See "High School Department Chair"​ in the High School Job Descriptions.