The first of four prospective Head of School candidates, Katie Titus, introduced herself as someone with a strong sense of direction for the school. Titus originally hails from New Hampshire, and earned an undergraduate degree in Mathematics from Middlebury College in 1996. She later earned a Masters Degree in Education from Columbia University. Over the course of an illustrious education career, Titus has worked in numerous positions at various private high schools, most recently serving as Head of School at Mercersburg Academy.
Needless to say, Titus has an experienced profile for her candidacy of Head of School at Concord Academy, and the Centipede was able to interview her during her two-day visit on campus. She placed an emphasis on being a collaborative leader and working to build relationships within the school community.
When asked what unique leadership qualities she would bring to the CA community, Titus said, “I don’t know if it’s unique, but my leadership style is highly collaborative. […] Having played on teams, […] I think that the idea of the team and making sure that the team is aligned and understands what the common goals are.”
A united community is very important to Titus and part of what attracted her to CA. Specifically, Titus loved the sense of community in the chapel, and the way it brought the community together.
When asked how she would be involved with students if she were to become head of school, Titus talked about how she immersed herself at Mercersburg. She taught a class, and for one semester even took a class. In addition, Titus shadowed several students, each for an entire day. In doing so she got to know the students, better understood student life, and even experienced a 6:00 a.m. wrestling practice.
Titus admires CA’s mission statement but believes that the school needs a more concrete understanding of what the mission conveys. She explained, “I’d encourage you to make sure you all understand what [love of learning, common trust, and community and equity] mean as a community, versus what they mean to you, [an] what they might mean to somebody else, because I think there might be a broader perspective on that.” According to Titus, becoming aligned on the mission’s meaning is crucial, for the mission is the baseline reference when hard conversations occur.
Looking ahead, Titus is excited about CA’s centennial. She believes that centennials are opportunities to dig into the history of the school: “break out the archives, look at the pictures, read the letters, read the communications, [and] get to know where this place came from.” Titus said that in order to help a school know what they want next, you need to understand its DNA.
Overall, Titus was delighted to have the opportunity to visit the CA community. If she were to become Head of School, she would like to work with the community as a collaborative leader. Titus wants to build a common understanding of CA’s mission statement, explore the history of the school, and form the community into one of belonging and purpose.