California Independent Schools Business Officers Association

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Controller - Vistamar School

  • 12 Oct 2017 11:13 AM
    Message # 5310959

    Vistamar School is a college preparatory, co-educational, independent day school that serves a very diverse population of students in grades 9-12, supported by a generous program of Moderated Tuition.  Approximately 35% of our students participate in our Moderated Tuition program, and approximately 50% of our students identify as students of color.   As described in our mission statement, we seek to attract a faculty and student body who bring diversity of thought and culture to our school community, and who will be committed to ensuring that we provide an inclusive environment for the respectful exchange of multiple perspectives. 

    Since our opening in 2005, enrollment has grown steadily to 275 students, who are drawn from over 50 different middle schools and over 35 different zip codes in greater Los Angeles. We will add faculty and classrooms incrementally as we approach our target enrollment of 300. 

    Vistamar is located in the eastern-most section of El Segundo.  The school is close to major freeway interchanges and is well serviced by public transportation, including a commuter rail station. 

    Both tuition and salaries are competitive with other Los Angeles- area independent schools. Vistamar is fully accredited by the California Association of Independent Schools (CAIS) and the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC), and holds institutional memberships in the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) and the Council of International Schools (CIS). 

    Overview of the Position:

    Reporting directly to the Director of Finance, the Controller is instrumental in the day to day operations of the Business Office and provides critical support to various school constituencies. 

    Professional and Personal Qualifications:

    • Education experience in an independent school is preferable.
    • A Bachelor’s degree in accounting or related field is required.  A CPA and/or MBA are desirable.
    • Requires a thorough understanding of non-profit accounting and an understanding of GAAP as it relates to independent schools. 
    • At least 7-10 years of progressive, responsible, professional experience including the monthly close process, annual reporting and audit exposure. 
    • Must have an excellent understanding of automated accounting systems such as Quickbooks Enterprise. 
    • Requires excellent organizational, oral and written communication, and problem solving skills.
    • A strong team player with a clear perspective on the mission and functioning of an independent school. 
    • The ability to collaborate and interact positively with all school constituencies. 
    • Willingness to work in a fast-changing, fluid environment.
    • Proficiency or fluency in Spanish is a plus. 

    Duties include but are not limited to:

    • Collaborates with and supports the Business Office Coordinator to ensure that Business Office functions are completed in a timely manner. Serve as the backup in her absence.
    • Ensures the maintenance of effective internal controls and procedures to assure the safeguarding of assets and the accuracy and reliability of financial information.
    • Prepares monthly financial statements and assist in preparing budget to actual analyses.  Responsible for developing monthly closing schedule, preparing journal entries, investment schedules, depreciation and fixed asset schedules, and all major accruals.
    • Ensures timely preparation of data for annual financial audits and related Federal and State tax returns. (Official tax returns are completed by external audit firm).   Serves as the primary staff liaison for the annual financial audit.
    • Assists in the preparation of the annual operating and capital budgets, special cost studies, analytical reports, and financial models used in strategic planning.
    • Provides support to the Board of Trustees, Investment, Finance and Audit Committees.        
    • Assists with cash management including maintaining monthly cash liquidity reporting, reconciling bank statements, and monitoring investment accounts.
    • Prepare student tuition invoices per student contract and payment plan for the school year.
    • Reviews receipts and disbursements for AR & AP along with supporting documentation for accuracy and appropriateness.
    • Reviews all checks for proper expense allocation, payment amounts, and authorizations on the check request.
    • Reviews customer billing entries made by the Business Office Coordinator in the accounting system for proper revenue allocation and contract amounts.
    • Reviews payroll entries and reconcile monthly. Responsible for year-end payroll accruals for vacation, personal time and teacher summer pay.
    • Verifies compliance with all financial and contract reporting requirements. Primary staff contact for property tax, IRS, workers comp, or other compliance activities.
    • Coordinates with Development the review and reconciliation of endowment, contribution and pledge activity.
    • Maintains and builds relationships with bankers, investment brokers, insurance brokers, and outside vendors of the school.
    • Maintains up-to-date certificates of liability for all vendors and construction, handle all rental inquiries and relationships. Provides information for Workers Comp insurance.
    • Serves as Moderated Tuition coordinator, working closely with parents to assist with School and Student Services (SSS) application process.
    • Compiles data from SSS to provide the Moderated Tuition Committee with the financial information needed to assist in Moderated Tuition decisions.
    • Performs other appropriate duties as assigned by the Head of School and or Director of Finance. 

    In addition to the skills outlined above, we are looking for an individual who has strong communication skills, initiative, and desire to grow professionally. An ability and willingness to embrace the mission of Vistamar School, flexibility, and a sense of humor are required.  

    How to Apply

    Additional information about Vistamar School is available on the school’s website: Applicants should submit a complete résumé and cover letter by e-mail to: No calls please. 

    Last modified: 12 Oct 2017 11:14 AM | Anonymous member
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