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TeenBloc Program Manager

A+ Schools – Pittsburgh’s independent community advocate for equity and excellence in public education – is seeking a highly productive, strategic, and experienced individual to join our team of dedicated, mission-driven professionals.

The Organization

A+ Schools is an independent community advocate for equity and excellence in public education in Pittsburgh. We envision a public education system in Pittsburgh where:
• Overall student achievement continues to rise, with 100% of students graduating, and 80% finishing a training program, 2 year or 4 year university program, and
• Race is not a factor in determining which students: are in the highest and lowest achievement categories, graduate from high school or matriculate in training programs or colleges and universities.

A+ Schools’ purpose is to be a community force advancing the highest educational achievement and character development for every public school student. We choose to specifically focus on issues of educational equity because significant barriers exist that directly and indirectly deny groups of students a high quality education. To achieve educational equity in Pittsburgh Public Schools must enact policies and practices that specifically increase opportunities and resources for African American students.

Our work focuses community attention on the specific issues at hand through research and policy analysis; explicitly engages and elevates community voices from the communities most at risk; creates opportunities at multiple levels of engagement for citizens to get involved in removing barriers to student success; and seeks to build broad community will to advance change in the public education system.

One of the major goals of our current strategic plan is to build a sizeable community of parents and students with the power, skill and knowledge to organize others to ensure African American students receive the education they deserve. Key to reaching that goal is the grassroots work of TeenBloc and a Youth Program Manager.

TeenBloc focuses on creating youth-led systemic change (through organizing, civic engagement, and policymaking) that addresses the root causes of social injustice, while at the same time increasing young people’s belief that they can be effective agents of social change.

Summary of Position

The Youth Program Manager will be responsible for developing curriculum and program materials, training students, facilitating high school students through decision-making processes and assisting them in designing, implementing and evaluating the TeenBloc program, and providing administrative assistance to TeenBloc.

This position requires passion for social justice, a growth mind set, strong relationship orientation, planning and facilitation skills as well as strong communication skills. The Program Manager will spend a large percentage of his/her time in Pittsburgh Public High Schools while working on several projects at once, so the position requires someone with high energy and effective time management. A key function of this position is to coach, support, motivate, and encourage student voice. The success of the Program Manager will be reflected in the accomplishments of TeenBloc.

Reporting Relationships

The Youth Program Manager reports to and is evaluated by the Director of Youth Programs

Essential Functions

Program Management and Evaluation:
• Lead strategic growth and deepen impact of TeenBloc program.
• Create a yearly work-plan with measurable goals, objectives and student outcomes.
• Expand TeenBloc to include school-based chapters in Pittsburgh’s public high schools.
• Implement a plan for TeenBloc membership growth and retention.
• Develop the organizing and leadership skills of high school students by training and coaching, facilitating meetings and creating opportunities for growth and ownership
• Design and lead youth organizing campaigns in partnership with TeenBloc students by
o issue identification, coalition building, building mobilization, developing students as campaign leaders, mobilizing networks of students.
• Monitor and evaluate TeenBloc’s program, practices, initiatives, materials and curriculum and organizing campaigns to ensure quality and effectiveness
• Support overall organizational development and implementation of the strategic plan (including playing a supportive role in fundraising efforts)
Program Development:
• Create program materials in format that is usable by the Youth Organizer for developing and leading school-based chapters of TeenBloc
• Infuse best-practices from credible research on youth development, youth organizing and leadership programs into program materials and curriculum to ensure TeenBloc staff and partners are implementing high-quality programming.
• Implement a process to evaluate the TeenBloc program, which may include but is not limited to collecting data from students, gathering information from focus groups, and completing observational protocols.
• Coach TeenBloc’s Youth Organizer.
• Document the work of TeenBloc in a way that makes it transferrable to other youth organizing programs.
Engagement
• Actively and continually engage and recruit youth to participate in Teen Bloc chapters, programming and events
• Develop strong relationships with TeenBloc youth
• Facilitate two (2) TeenBloc chapters
• Deliver information to the community that is accurate based on research, compelling and easy to understand.
• Educate and engage youth, families and community members on current educational issues
Administrative:
• Update contacts and records regularly in Salesforce, the contact database used by A+ Schools
• Assist with other work deemed necessary to accomplish the mission of A+ Schools
• Provide staff support to A+ Schools’ various program committees
• Attend Board meetings and work with the Board of Directors as needed
Logistical management
• Plan and prepare for all TeenBloc sessions including hospitality, materials, and transportation.
• Schedule TeenBloc activities and maintain a shared calendar
Engagement
• Cultivate and maintain relationships with school leaders
• Develop meaningful collaborations with local, regional and national youth-organizing programs
• Represent TeenBloc at local events, community gatherings, workshops, trainings and in the media
• Deliver information to the community that is accurate based on research, compelling and easy to understand.
• Mobilize community members to fulfill organizational goals
Supervision:
• Supervise Program Manager, Youth Organizer and Interns
• Foster a team-oriented, supportive, and accountable work environment
• Conduct onboarding and training for new employees and interns.
• Determine workload and delegate assignments.
• Encourage staff professional development and education.
• Monitor and evaluate staff performance.
Administrative:
• Assist with other work deemed necessary to accomplish the mission of A+ Schools
• Provide staff support to A+ Schools’ program committees
• Attend Board meetings and work with the Board of Directors as needed
• Compile all necessary reports for Board of Directors and Funders
• Create and manage program budget.
The ideal candidate for this position will possess many, if not all, of the following professional qualifications, competencies and personal qualities:
Qualifications
• Bachelor’s degree required
• At least three years’ experience in youth organizing or student leadership development strongly preferred.
• Passion for working with high school students and a commitment to educational equity
• Flexibility to work beyond regular business hours as needed
• High degree of personal initiative—self-starter
• Demonstrated ability to work with a diverse group of stakeholders
• Familiarity with educational issues
• A track record of dedication and the attitude to do what it takes to succeed
• Successful experience working with groups through processes such as facilitation, consensus building and problem solving
• A comfort level with being in the spotlight, but not having the spotlight be about them; rather it being about the larger education issues and relevant concerns
• A respect for and comfort level with rigorous and healthy debate about issues
• A desire to continually learn, and an ability to thrive in a fast-paced environment
Skills
• Demonstrated project management skills, which includes but is not limited to:
o effective time management skills
o strong organizational skills
o strong attention to detail
o solid analytic skills and creative problem-solving
• Demonstrated ability to juggle competing priorities and to meet important deadlines without compromising the quality of the finished products
• Effective group facilitation skills
• Excellent communication skills, including verbal, written and public speaking
• Strong interpersonal skills the ability to build relationships with culturally diverse group of stakeholders
• Analysis and synthesis skills, including the ability to collect information, determine key objectives, and act strategically
• Coalition building skills, including the ability to motivate, negotiate, and persuade stakeholders into a course of action
• Experience with Salesforce preferred
• Proficiency in social media is a plus
• Event planning experience

Interested individuals should submit a cover letter and resume to newopportunities@aplusschools.org by no later than June 20, 2014. Please use your cover letter to describe what aspect of the job interests you the most and demonstrate your ability to be persuasive.