Executive Director – Illinois Network
Location: Chicago, IL
Founded in Boston in 2005, The Achievement Network (ANet) is an entrepreneurial nonprofit organization on the cutting edge of education reform. We have grown more than 80% per year over the last four years, and we now serve over 460 schools educating 100,000 students in Massachusetts, Washington, D.C., New Orleans, Newark, Chicago, Tennessee, and New York City. Across our national network, our partner schools are outperforming their peers, with schools in most of our networks achieving twice the gains of non-ANet schools. Our support has consistently helped our schools – whether district or charter, high capacity or low capacity, new to ANet or long-time partners – achieve breakthrough results for their students.
Over the last 10 years, school systems have invested heavily in assessment programs and data systems. These systems have generated large amounts of information about student achievement, but they have done little to help educators target their instruction to the needs of each student in their classroom. In other words, schools have developed systems that enable assessment of student learning, but they have not mastered the art of using assessment for student learning. ANet helps schools build that capability through focused use of data, standards, and time. We provide our partners with the tools and training they need to go from data to action:
• Our assessment, planning, and instructional tools help teachers and school leaders understand where they need to focus their time and attention.
• Our coaching and professional development help schools turn that focus into concrete actions that consistently improve instruction for students throughout the year.
Our proprietary technology assets provide a backbone for the support we deliver to our schools.
ANet has received multiple awards and recognition, including a prestigious Investing In Innovation (I3) grant from the federal government and New Schools Venture Fund’s “Organization of the Year” in 2011. Over the next five years, we will build on this success. By 2017, we expect to reach over 250,000 students while continuing to deliver breakthrough results for our schools.
The Achievement Network is seeking a visionary and strategic leader to take the helm of the Illinois Network as the new Executive Director. This individual will serve as the voice and face of ANet in the Network and will be responsible for setting and driving forward the team’s ambitious and feasible strategic growth and sustainability plan; while cultivating rich and impactful relationships within the multiple facets of the local education community.
Responsibilities include, but are not limited to:
Set and drive the short and long-term vision and direction for network growth, impact and sustainability
Vision Setting & Strategic Planning
• Develop a comprehensive and compelling network vision and strategic plan that articulates ANet ‘s ability to address and impact specific needs and issues within the Illinois educational landscape
• Build relationships with key education reform leaders and with influential leaders from other sectors to ensure these leaders understand our strategy and become advocates for our work in helping to raise student achievement in our communities
• Build staff capacity to interface with local stakeholders (schools, district leaders, education reform leaders) and articulate the unique network vision and impact
Growth & Sustainability
• Identify and cultivate key relationships within the local education space to ensure the growth and sustainability of the network
• Manage the sales process to attract and retain partner schools and districts
• Identify and execute on local fundraising opportunities as necessary to meet network funding targets
Manage the network to set and achieve ambitious goals that are aligned to organizational goals and priorities
• Lead the team in setting ambitious and feasible short and long-term student achievement, school practice, network growth, financial, and team management goals
• Support individual team members in crafting and executing strong strategic plans
• Track progress towards goals and work with team to adjust plans to ensure goals are met
Build and manage a team of coaches (Directors of School Support) to increase student achievement by partnering with and building the capacity of school leaders in the network
• Hire a diverse and highly qualified team of coaches (individuals with experience ranging from instructional coaches to former principals)
• Coach and develop each individual to maximize their impact in the coach role and to build their long-term leadership capacity
• Ensure a strong performance culture within the team that aligns to the ANet mission, core values, and commitment to diversity and inclusiveness
Consult with School and System-level Leadership teams to support the implementation of structures that accelerate the impact of our work in schools
• Share insights about what we’ve learned about what school and system-level leadership teams can do to support strong standards-based data-driven instruction
• Lead quarterly conversations with district and school leadership teams that are designed to reflect on progress in relation to student performance and school practice to determine what leaders can do to accelerate impact in schools
• Leverage existing structures to integrate Common Core and data-driven instructional practices into professional development offerings
Serve as a part of the organization’s leadership team in order to facilitate ANet’s growth and success
• Support the growth and success of ANet in the long-term by proactively identifying opportunities for innovation that align to our core mission
• Contribute to the program strategy by supporting the development of tools, content and trainings that improve our impact on schools
• Provide input to the senior leadership team on organizational priorities and strategies as needed
• Serve in internal ANet leadership roles (e.g. serve on national committees) and collaborate regularly with other EDs and senior leaders
In order to be successful in this role, ideal candidates should demonstrate the following:
• Belief in The Achievement Network’s mission and strategy: Embracing common core standards, assessments and data as meaningful tools for raising student achievement, professional development as a critical lever in improving school achievement, and network collaboration as a powerful means of spreading best practices across schools
• Ability to set long-term vision and to identify new opportunities that have not yet been explored to ensure the long-term relevance and strength of the network
• Ability to manage adults towards clear outcomes with a keen ability to coach and develop staff to maximize their leadership potential
• Superb relationship building skills and credibility with senior leaders
• Excellent communication skills (ability to explain complex problems and solutions in clear, concise and compelling ways in settings ranging from one-on-one conversations to large group facilitation)
• Expert strategic-thinking skills; curiosity to solve complex problems and ability to think boldly and motivate others to maximize new opportunities using a data-driven approach
• Self-aware, humble, attuned to the needs of partner districts and schools (ability to truly hear where our schools are coming from and connect their reality to proven practices in a realistic way)
• Knowledge of schools and what it takes to manage change in schools
• Motivated by an entrepreneurial, fast-paced, highly collaborative, team-oriented and fun environment, with a desire to contribute to a growing organization
• Proficient in PowerPoint, Excel, and Word
Experience and Educational Background:
• Minimum of 7 years of work experience, including:
o Significant experience managing or coaching/training adults
o Teaching experience with a proven track record of high achievement results
o School leadership experience strongly preferred
o Experience with data-driven instruction and standards-based education required
o Graduate school work in relevant programs (MEd, MBA, MPP) beneficial
What We Offer:
ANet is a dynamic, entrepreneurial, team-oriented organization that is committed to the professional development of all staff members. Individuals who join ANet have the opportunity to join an exceptional team of colleagues committed to helping schools to close the achievement gap. ANet offers a comprehensive benefits plan including health and dental insurance; a 401(K) plan; 10 paid holidays as well as paid days off between the Christmas and New Year’s holidays; three weeks vacation (four weeks after two years with the organization); and short and longterm disability coverage.
Salary for this position is highly competitive and is based on prior experience and qualifications.
How to Apply:
The Achievement Network is soliciting applications for this position immediately. To apply, please visit our website, http://www.achievementnetwork.org/careers/ and click the “Apply Now” button. You can review our positions, create an application, and upload a resume and thoughtful cover letter, outlining how your skills and experience meet the qualifications of the position and stating how you heard about this opportunity. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling and urgent basis.
The Achievement Network is committed to maximizing the diversity of our organization. We are an equal opportunity employer and seek individuals of all ethnic and racial backgrounds to apply to this position.
Boston, MA 02114