LEARN Charter School Network, one of the nation’s premier elementary charter school programs, seeks a highly effective candidate for a newly created position, Manager of Community Engagement. The successful candidate will be an engaging professional with a demonstrated track record of effective community organizing and advocacy.
Founded in 2001, LEARN is a network of college prep public elementary schools creating measurable, transformational change in the lives of students from underinvested neighborhoods. The mission of LEARN is to provide our scholars with the academic foundation and ambition to earn a college degree. We are fulfilling that mission every day by outperforming district schools in every key metric including more than double the number of college graduates compared with district, state, and national averages.
We educate 4,000 PK-8th grade students across 10 campuses in Chicago and Lake County, IL. We serve a majority minority, low-income student population (98% and 86%, respectively). In addition, LEARN has developed a highly effective program to serve both military and civilian families at Naval Station, Great Lakes in Waukegan, IL. LEARN’s success in serving the unique needs of military families has led to its national expansion to Washington D.C. effective fall 2021.
LEARN reflects the communities it serves with a leadership team that is 75% minority, including 80% of its principals. We are committed to providing education equity for our scholars and are proud to reflect those values within our LEARN community.
The Community Engagement Manager is responsible for developing and implementing an effective community engagement strategy across LEARN’s 10 Illinois schools. This position reports directly to LEARN’s Chief of Advancement and External Affairs and works closely with LEARN’s student recruiting staff, campus principals, and advocacy consultant.
Responsibilities include but are not limited to the following:
Develop and manage a comprehensive year round program to attract students and families to LEARN including, engaging with faith leaders and community influencers.
Leverage innovative strategies to use social media to recruit families and enhance community engagement.
Build a relationship with local community groups, district representatives and elected officials including but not limited to attending community events, Town Halls, panels, and other forums.
Track and responding to legislation and policy decisions that may impact LEARN.
Organize LEARN parents to advocate for equitable public policy on behalf of LEARN including arranging for testimony at district board meetings, ISBE meetings, and visiting Springfield to meet directly with State Representatives and State Senators.
Act as LEARN’s liaison to local advocacy groups such as the Illinois Network of Charter Schools.
Conduct training modules for LEARN staff and parents to improve advocacy skills throughout the network.
Maintain a database of LEARN stakeholders including community partners, local businesses, parents, and elected officials, as well as a record of recent contact and actions.
Track and report on any performance metrics related to this role.
Minimum of 3+ years of experience in building community partnerships, organizing parents, managing political relationships, and crisis management.
Education, Training and/or Experience
Bachelor’s degree preferred
Minimum of three years of professional advocacy experience
Demonstrated success with community engagement, education policy, or public affairs.
Knowledge, Skills, Abilities and Personal Characteristics
Excellent verbal/written communication and presentation skills.
Experience adapting to community dynamics
An understanding of political implications
Ability to manage multiple priorities and a variable workload
Excellent organizational skills
Strong work ethic, initiative, sense of urgency, and the ability to work within a team
Experience working with people and communities of color.
A passionate commitment to education equity