Director, Professional Learning
We are seeking a versatile and strategic leader who can shape and manage a high-impact portfolio that seeks to strengthen the professional learning sector for educators serving low-income students of color. You will guide our grantmaking in this area and manage a vibrant, ongoing community of practice among grantees. This role will draw on your understanding of how to build coherent professional learning systems, as well as how technical assistance providers can deliver quality professional learning consistently and support districts and schools to build capacity to do the same sustainably. You will support grantees as they help districts and schools build deep knowledge of the demands of college and career ready standards and connect professional learning to high quality instructional materials. In addition, you will guide the Foundation’s approach to supporting grantees in developing and delivering professional learning that addresses educator mindsets and biases that limit the opportunities and achievement of students of color, as well as professional learning that helps teachers meet the needs of students whose academic performance is below grade level. You will also partner with other team members to shape our placed-based professional learning investments. As a member of our Director team, you will be a leadership presence internally and externally. Internally, you will contribute to the creation of an inclusive, optimistic team culture, pushing the thinking of your leadership team colleagues while mentoring and developing junior team members. Externally, you will engage with leadership teams of our grantees as well as funders and others who are aiming towards the same goal – transforming education for equitable outcomes for all students.
- Lead the execution and evolution of a grantmaking strategy for professional learning organizations that results in meaningfully improved teaching as evidenced by increased student learning.
- Manage grants for each organization in the portfolio by conducting proposal reviews, milestone development, reports analysis and impact assessment. Current grantees include: Achievement Network, Education Resource Strategies (ERS), Instruction Partners, Leading Educators, Public Impact, New Leaders, New Teacher Center, and TNTP.
- Assess and recommend additional grantees to further our strategic aims of scaling effective professional learning and addressing key challenges facing professional learning providers, such as addressing educator racially-based mindsets and expectations, meeting needs of students below grade level, or more closely connecting quality curriculum with professional learning.
- Design and lead our ongoing community of practice of professional learning grantees, as well as site-based cross-organizational learning experiences for grantees to examine and strengthen the design and delivery of each other’s services.
- Build strong relationships with and provide guidance and support to grantees’ CEOs and leadership teams on strategic and operational challenges with the goal of helping them succeed.
- Form productive partnerships with organizations, experts and other funders working on similar issues.
- Integrate learning from our relevant research investments and for-profit professional learning investments into the broader professional learning portfolio.
- Collaborate with other team members on strategic and operational issues to draw connections, integrate learning and build coherence across our portfolios and advance our impact.
- Inform the Foundation’s strategy and investments in research, communications, advocacy, place-based support and other areas related to professional learning and the work of the grantees in your portfolio.
- Develop and manage junior staff.
- Communicate clearly and persuasively in writing and in conversation and presentations with teammates, Foundation leadership, grantees and leaders in the field.
- Passionate commitment to creating a public education system in which all students – especially low-income students of color— graduate from high school prepared for college and careers of their choosing
- Philosophical alignment with the Foundation’s support for career- and college-ready standards, the potential for the development of educators, and the need for a more diverse educator workforce
- Fifteen or more years of education focused work experience
- Demonstrated expertise in at least two of these areas:
- Coherent K-12 professional learning systems
- Educator professional development in schools, school districts, CMOs or sizable non-profits that addresses content and pedagogical content knowledge, skillful use of curriculum, needs of students below grade, and/or racially-based educator mindsets
- Systems-level organizational change in the education sector
- Organizational health indicators, including analysis of team, financial models, governance, programmatic design and delivery, and market landscape and demand
- Entrepreneurial approach to addressing deeply rooted problems
- Creative, strategic thinker who is also an excellent listener
- Expertise and a track record of success in complex project management
- Excellent interpersonal and relationship-building skills
- Strong team and learning orientation
- A strong sense of optimism and urgency
- Knowledge of effective philanthropy, based on experience working with funders and/or philanthropic organizations (as a provider or recipient of funding), a plus