A Message from Head of School Sean Casey - Head of Upper School Announcement

December 16, 2019

Dear FRA Community,

I am pleased to announce the appointment of Jay Salato '03 as Franklin Road Academy's next head of upper school beginning July 1, 2020. Mr. Salato will transition from his current role as upper school dean of student life to succeed Prentice Stabler, who has successfully led our upper school for the last seven years. Mr. Stabler will remain at FRA, serving as the associate head of school. This announcement is the culmination of a five-month national search led by an internal search committee of upper school faculty and members of our senior leadership team.

I am excited for our entire school community and for the impact Jay will have on our upper school. He is a gifted educational leader who has a passion for our students and a commitment to the mission of FRA. During an extensive search, Jay emerged from a talented pool of candidates as a compassionate, student-centered leader devoted to the pursuit of excellence and the continued growth of our students. Our school provides a challenging educational experience in an inclusive Christian community committed to developing leaders of integrity and purpose, and I am grateful to have talented educators like Jay who are able to grow in their leadership on our campus.

A 2003 graduate of FRA, Jay holds a Masters of Education in Independent School Leadership from Vanderbilt University's Peabody College of Education. He earned his Bachelor of Arts in French and Masters of Education in Secondary Education with an emphasis in French from Vanderbilt University as well. He has also participated as a summer fellow at the Peabody Professional Institute in Independent School Leadership and the Klingenstein Summer Institute for Early Career Teachers through Columbia University in New York. Jay began his teaching career at Hillwood High School before returning to his alma mater in 2012 to teach French and serve as the eighth grade chair. He has served as the upper school dean of student life for the last three years, working closely with Prentice and the upper school leadership team. 

While I am excited to announce Jay as our next head of upper school, I would be remiss if I did not acknowledge the remarkable growth that has taken place in our upper school under Prentice Stabler's leadership. During his tenure, Prentice has substantially grown our academic and co-curricular programming, while remaining focused on student achievement and student health and wellness. With the opening of our Innovation Lab, our robotics program has grown out of a small storage room into a nationally recognized program that won the state championship last year. Our expanded interim program provides all upper school students opportunities to travel regionally, nationally, and internationally and participate in local experiences and career shadowing. Our students continue to perform exceptionally well in Advanced Placement, honors, and standard courses and gain admission into many of the finest colleges and universities in the country. Last year, our seniors matriculated to 50 different colleges in 24 states and two countries. Prentice has recruited and retained a talented faculty committed to our students and our mission while encouraging our students to lead, grow in their faith, and be of service to others. I am grateful for Prentice's leadership and confident in a smooth transition for our families as Jay continues to build on his fine work and Prentice continues to serve our community as associate head of school.

The selection of our new head of upper school is the result of an extensive search conducted in partnership with Carney Sandoe & Associates, a consulting firm based in Boston, Massachusetts. I am grateful to our search committee who began with a pool of more than 40 candidates, interviewing nine semifinalists on campus in early November. The committee eventually selected three finalists who visited FRA over the last two weeks to meet with students, faculty, and parents before a final selection was made. I appreciate the time invested by our community to ensure the continued growth of our school.

Please join me in congratulating Jay on his new appointment. As we celebrate this Christmas season, I am mindful that we are truly blessed to be part of this remarkable community. Thank you for your ongoing support of Franklin Road Academy.



Sean R. Casey