Expeditions Designer, Team Greenfield|
Start Date: Immediate
Location: Northeastern States (CT, NY, RI Preferred)
About Achievement First:
Achievement First, a non-profit 501(c)3 charter school management organization, operates over 30 public charter schools in Brooklyn, Connecticut and Rhode Island. The mission of Achievement First is to deliver on the promise of equal educational opportunity for all children, regardless of race or economic status. Achievement First currently educates more than 12,600 students in historically underserved neighborhoods, with over 90% of our students identifying as Black and Latino. With its college-preparatory focus, the Achievement First approach is attaining breakthrough academic gains throughout the network. Beyond our students and schools, Achievement First is an engaged and prominent partner in the larger conversation about how to improve public education and student achievement in our country.
In 2015, Achievement First launched an innovative school model that we call Greenfield. Greenfield is a ground-up redesign of the middle and high school with the goal of dramatically increasing college persistence. In fall 2019 we opened our fifth Greenfield Campus. Achievement First’s Greenfield schools provide rigorous, high-quality instruction within a nurturing school community focused on developing self-motivated learners, problem-solvers and leaders. Greenfield is currently focused on grades 5-7 and growing to 8th grade in 20-21 and HS in the 21-22 school year. Our students benefit from:
● Self-directed work powered by a Personalized Learning Platform.
● Rigorous and rewarding core academic classes.
● Twice daily enrichments of scholar choice.
● Hands-on, experiential learning that deepens and extends what students learn in the classroom through two-week long Expeditions three times a year.
● Social emotional learning and small-group mentoring to develop social-emotional skills and goal setting skills.
● Student curated dream teams that consist of teachers, family members and other significant influencers in a scholar’s life. This team works to help scholars achieve scholar goals.
● Intervention built into the fabric of the school day.
● An awesomely powerful community where school, home and the broader community link arms in support of scholar development and achievement.
At Greenfield, we strive to ensure all scholars excel on our four College Success Factors:
● Academic Preparation: Our students will ALL achieve at the highest levels – they’ll be competitive with the best students in the US and abroad and fully prepared for the rigors of college coursework.
● Academic Independence: Students can become the agents of their success through ownership and personalization.
● Social Emotional Strength: Habits of success can and should be taught. Students need to experience the joy and excellence that comes from enrichment outside of traditional academics.
● Personal Why: A deeply held and individually developed personal drive to achieve grounded in personal interests and motivation.
For more information about Achievement First’s mission, approach, schools and team, please visit our website at www.achievementfirst.org.
Expeditions & Enrichment at Greenfield
Expeditions are two week mini-courses that give students new and exciting learning experiences - a hands on, real-world taste of career and college options. Expeditions aim to spark student passions, provide space for students to “try on” different careers and passions and provide exposure to both community groups and role models that share students’ backgrounds. Expeditions breakdown the traditional school walls to leverage the rich assets on offer in each of our communities. The end of Expeditions showcase is a chance for students to cultivate presentation skills and build awesomely powerful community as families come to school and celebrate their learning. Greenfield students have 3 rounds of Expeditions each year.
Greenfield schools also have robust enrichment programs. Students choose two disciplines from 6 options offered at each school - one physical education course (dance, sports, or martial arts) and one other enrichment course (theater, band, or coding & robotics). Both enrichment courses meet daily during the regular school day for the entire year. Intensive daily practice enables students to pursue excellence and develop deep skill in areas of interest. In enrichment, students become more than scholars - they become flutists and trombonists, robotics engineers, Hip Hop dancers, and martial arts masters.
At Greenfield, we want students to love school. We want students to explore their interests and cultivate a strong sense of community. We want them to reflect and gain insight into their passions and feel a sense of pride in their expertise and skills. That’s what Expeditions and enrichment is all about.
The Expeditions Designer role is an exciting opportunity for a former teacher, curriculum designer, or school leader to work closely with a high performing, innovative team. The core function of this role is to design diverse, culturally relevant, rigorous, engaging, meaningful and fun Expeditions curriculum for use in Greenfield middle schools. The Expeditions Designer will also play a central role in building a vision for the expeditions program in high school, and designing expeditions aligned to that vision. The Expeditions Designer works closely with other Greenfield curriculum designers, operations staff, network leaders, school leaders and community members across our three geographies: Brooklyn, New Haven, and Providence. The Expeditions Designer reports to the Expeditions and Enrichment Team Lead.
Responsibilities will include but are not limited to:
● Expeditions Design - Middle & High School (Grades 5-12)
● Design hands-on, rigorous, culturally relevant two week long career focused Expeditions on a broad range of careers related to agriculture and natural sciences, business and information systems, engineering and technology, health sciences, and fine arts.
● Leverage the full assets of each community in selecting community partners and role models that place special emphasis on people of color who can serve as role models and mentors in key career fields.
● Design curriculum and support materials for each Expedition by sourcing input and ideas from a diversity of sources and voices (unit overviews, lesson plans, slide decks, and student-facing materials)
● Ensure that Expeditions design materials are motivating, positive, teacher and scholar friendly, and reflective of Greenfield values, pedagogy, culture and priorities
● Coordinate with the E&E Operations Associate on planning of all field lessons and guest educators
● Revise existing Expeditions to continuously improve quality, strengthen our diversity, equity and inclusiveness lens and to codify best practices in support of scaling the Greenfield model
● Develop and revise systems, structures, and guidance to facilitate smooth and effective implementation of the program
● Collaborate on the creation of a high school vision for Expeditions that builds upon our middle school program and provides engaging, challenging, real world career experiences
● Design high school Expeditions that prepare students for a broad range of career and college options (this could include Internships, J-Terms, Independent Study, AP Capstone, etc.)
● Expeditions Professional Development & Execution Support
● Plan and lead PD sessions for Expeditions leaders and teachers throughout the year
● Support school level leaders to ensure smooth and strong planning and execution
● Assess Expeditions by analyzing student and teacher data and reflections, reviewing student products and performances, and developing a plan for improving the program
● Identify “bright spots” in Expeditions and leverage with all schools using video examples, scholar work, and observation data
● Greenfield Team Participation & Partnership
● Engage actively with Expeditions & Enrichment teammates - sharing, debating, and testing ideas for innovation and constant improvement and ensuring the team lives up to our lead for racial equity core value
● Collaborate with Expeditions & Enrichment teammates on all planning, training and support tasks
● Coordinate with Greenfield’s Director of Motivation to ensure consistency, alignment and synergy in program, values, habits, and vocabulary
● Serve as an active member of the broader Greenfield team and participate in regular team meetings and PDs
● Develop strong relationships and effective partnerships with school leaders to ensure strong school-site execution and continuous improvement
● Foster a collaborative workspace where a diversity of views, backgrounds and perspectives are valued. Fully leverage the diversity and power of our network, families and community partners.
Skills, Characteristics and Beliefs
● Design Heart: You love to design and plan challenging, hands-on, multi-modal curricula. You create materials that are clear, easy to use, creative, student-centered, fun and aligned to key daily and unit outcomes.
● Diversity, Equity and Inclusiveness: You believe our program, curriculum, and scholar experience must
foreground role models, experiences, and assets of people of color with a particular emphasis on
African Americans and Latinos who represent the majority of our scholars.
● Execution Support: You have a strong sense of what it takes to leverage a curriculum to achieve ambitious outcomes. You have the ability to build powerful relationships with school leaders, and a keen eye for identifying instructional strengths, growth areas and actionable next steps.
● Communication: You have strong skills in working across multiple stakeholders with a variety of perspectives, including both the ability to present information clearly and the equally important ability to listen carefully. You are adept at explaining a challenge and moving towards resolution.
● Project Management & Organization: You have strong project management skills (including project planning and execution) that allow you to successfully manage your time and drive toward key priorities. You have exceptional organizational skills and are able to execute tasks with an acute attention to detail.
● Entrepreneurial Drive and Innovative Spirit: You are an entrepreneurial and ambitious educator with a passion for innovation and an eagerness to strategically redesign schools.
● Dynamic: Innovation requires a commitment to continuous reflection, flexibility and improvement. You embrace change, are a team player, are flexible and adaptive, and strive for continuous development and creative solutions.
● Purpose Driven: We lead and operate with the deep belief that the purpose is greater than the process. This means we place “why” at the front of everything we do and we do whatever it takes to provide those we serve with the tools to not only “fish” for themselves but of a deep understanding of the impact of those tools.
● Excellence: Our students deserve the best. In order to provide them with opportunities they deserve, we must execute with precision, produce high quality materials, model professionalism and leadership for our organization as well as hold one another accountable so that we are our collective best selves.
● Cultural Awareness and Sensitivity: Our work must always be filtered through a lens of cultural awareness and sensitivity. We constantly ask ourselves how our work and interactions honor the background of those we serve. As a result, it’s a priority to reflect on our own experiences, attitudes and potential biases.
Educational Background and Work Experience
● Bachelor's degree from a competitive college or university, master’s degree preferred
● A minimum of 5 years of relevant work experience as an educator or in a related field working directly with schools, preferably as a coach, school leader, program designer, or design consultant
● Experience with Expeditionary Learning or other rigorous project-based learning strongly preferred.
● Proven track record of success as a teacher, curriculum designer, and/or school leader.
Special Work Requirements
Some evening and weekend work may be required. The position is based flexibly in the northeast, with a preference for Brooklyn, NY, New Haven, CT or Providence, RI. Periodic travel between these 3 regions will be necessary.
Salary for this position is competitive and commensurate with experience. Additionally, Achievement First offers a comprehensive benefits package.
Complete this application form to submit both a cover letter and resume: http://bit.ly/applyGF. Applications without a cover letter will not be considered.
Achievement First is an equal opportunity employer and an organization that values diversity. People from all diverse backgrounds are strongly encouraged to apply. Spanish language proficiency is a plus. You can learn more about diversity at Achievement First here: http://www.achievementfirst.org/about-us/diversity/.
Qualifications & Requirements
Educational Background and Work Experience
• Graduate degree in Clinical Social Work, Clinical Counseling or equivalent field of clinical study
• LCSW or equivalent clinical licensing in field of study
• At least four years of highly effective school-based social work experience demonstrating a strong track record of results
• At least two of those years include school leadership experience (e.g. coaching, leading school wide initiatives, etc.)
This position will require occasional travel (approximately 1-4 nights away per month) and candidates must be willing to work nights and weekends when necessary.
Reporting: The Director of Social Work reports directly to the VP of Special Services.