Reaching Higher is seeking a Director of Research & Implementation

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Job Description
This is a core position on the Reaching Higher NH (RHNH) team. The Director of Research & Implementation will lead the organization’s key research initiatives as well as the implementation of core elements of RHNH’s community engagement strategy, ensuring our organizational values, policy priorities, and the related needs of community members are continually upheld and advanced. The Director plays an integral role in RHNH’s policy development, helping to identify, and leading in the research of, policy opportunities and priorities. The Director also plays a vital role in guiding and implementing Reaching Higher’s place-based engagement efforts, building local capacity for relationship-building, partnerships, and sustained community involvement in efforts to support student learning.

Application and Hiring Timeline for The Director of Research & Implementation

Interested applicants are encouraged to apply as soon as possible. This is a new position will remain open until filled.

Responsibilities of The Director of Research & Implementation

Serve as Lead Policy Researcher

  • Research and prepare policy engagement materials, as requested and in close collaboration with the Policy Director, for use both internally and with external partners and stakeholders. Such materials may include policy briefings, reports on legislative campaigns, talking points, backgrounders, etc.
  • Provide reports and updates as requested by staff and board on all related work.
  • Develop and produce written content for internal use and for external publication on education research and innovation with applicability to New Hampshire’s context, in close collaboration with the Policy Director and Communications team.
  • Work in close collaboration with the Reaching Higher NH team to ensure that information, feedback, and inputs from all community engagement initiatives are efficiently and accurately captured and then leveraged to inform related policy and engagement work.
  • Play an essential role in Reaching Higher NH’s continual efforts to identify constituencies, K-12 issue areas, policy opportunities and/or challenges, that could and should be elevated, supported, and addressed by our organization’s policy and engagement work.
  • Serve as an approachable, respectful, and highly-informed partner for the schools, families, students, and all the community organizations and businesses with whom we work and, continually strengthen and expand those relationships with integrity and intentionality.
  • Work in close collaboration with the staff team to develop and/or inform Reaching Higher’s policy materials, backgrounders, and other resources – ensuring that the needs and issues of community members are addressed, elevated, and/or otherwise represented.

Build Enduring Partnerships to Strengthen Community Engagement

  • Identify and develop opportunities for partnership with school districts, community-based organizations, parent groups, and/or other local organizations interested in nurturing positive relationships in support of student success.
  • Work in deep collaboration with a diversity of community members to build skills, agency, and knowledge to improve community engagement in public education.
    • This means developing, leading, and/or supporting a wide range of strategies for community engagement, including, but not limited to:
      • Family engagement;
      • Educator professional development; and,
      • Parent-teacher partnerships.
    • This also means developing, leading, and/or supporting a wide range of events and/or place-based experiences related to community engagement, including, but not limited to:
      • Workshops;
      • Focus groups;
      • Town halls;
      • Parent nights and breakfasts;
      • Student-led convenings;
      • Skills-building trainings;
      • Deep canvasses; and,
      • Information sessions.
  • Serve as lead for relevant community initiatives, always in coordination with the staff team:
    • Liaise with community partners;
    • Ensure those initiatives are well-coordinated and that all involved partners and constituencies have timely updates, and the information, supports, and resources they need to meaningfully engage; and,
    • Identify and monitor any areas where additional outreach and supports would be needed to ensure the overall success of the initiative.

Play a Unique and Positive Role on the Reaching Higher Team

Be fully present and engaged in meetings with Reaching Higher’s management and team, gathering and offering constructive ideas, feedback, and support.

Serve as professional, respectful, and committed representative of Reaching Higher NH at all times.

As necessary, track all grant/project deliverables and time spent on related work, in a timely and accurate manner.

As appropriate, provide direct oversight of policy subcontracts and/or external project partners, ensuring RHNH’s organizational values are always upheld.

Qualifications:

We welcome and will consider applications from all serious applicants. The qualifications for this position are an overall guide for the types of skills and experience for which we are looking. We know talented folks come from a wide range of experiences and backgrounds – so, apply and tell us your story!

  • Master’s degree in education, government, political science, or other relevant fields, appreciated.
  • 2-5 years of demonstrated research experience.
  • Exceptional writing and communication skills.
  • Experience in community and/or family engagement, appreciated.
  • Experience building strong and impactful relationships with a wide diversity of people and community partners.
  • Familiarity with education issues and players across the NH landscape.
  • Experience planning and facilitating meetings, trainings, events, and projects.
  • Experience with grant-reporting and deliverables tracking.
  • Demonstrated experience, and comfort with, public speaking.
  • Proven ability to work in a number of contexts: independently, as part of a diverse team; and, under direct supervision.
  • Teaching experience is appreciated, but not required.
  • An overall startup mentality – flexibility, adaptability, commitment and energy – and, enthusiasm for working as part of a close, hard-working, and highly dedicated team.

Additional Requirements:

Availability evenings and weekends is essential. Must have a vehicle and valid driver’s license.

Relationships:

This position reports to Reaching Higher’s Executive Director and implements research and engagement initiatives in close collaboration with, and as appropriate, under the strategic direction of, the Policy Director.

Salary and Exempt Status:

This full-time, exempt position has a competitive annual salary and excellent benefits.

Application Process for The Director of Research & Implementation:

To apply, please send each of the following to Evelyn Aissa at evelyn@reachinghighernh.org: resume, cover letter, and two writing samples.  Incomplete applications will not be considered. Please note, this position is new and will be filled as soon as we find the right candidate. Interested applicants should not delay. No phone calls, please.

Reaching Higher NH is a nonpartisan 501c3 public education policy resource for New Hampshire parents, students, educators, and elected officials. We are dedicated to supporting high-quality public education and fostering high standards that give every student the opportunity to prepare for college, careers, and life in 21st century New Hampshire. We believe that strong public schools are the foundation of thriving communities and community engagement in public education is essential to the wellbeing of our students – and all of us. Founded in 2015, Reaching Higher is already NH’s leading resource for K-12 policy and deep community engagement in our schools.