Communications Director

Special Education Leader Fellowship

New Orleans, LA, USA Remote

Full time

$70-80k (annually)

Marketing, Communications + Public Relations

100% Remote

Sep 15

Communications Director

Organizational Overview

Our mission at the Special Education Leader Fellowship (SELF) is to empower schools to create welcoming and effective communities that enable ALL students to achieve their fullest potential. We aim to create an educational system where ALL students are celebrated, treated with dignity, and their strengths are leveraged to empower authentic and individualized learning.

SELF’s unique and specialized programming includes:

  1. Leader Fellowship: a program that provides formal training sessions, leadership coaching, professional learning communities, peer program reviews, and visits to exemplary programs across the country.
  2. Teacher Cohorts: a year-long program that provides formal training sessions, professional learning communities, personalized coaching, and partners with national research-based instructional programs. 
  3. School Support: training for leadership teams through our partnership with New Schools for New Orleans and customized consulting services to schools, charter management organization network teams, and school districts.

Our Core Values guide what and how we do our work and interact with each other and all of our partners:

  • Belief: We believe that every student, regardless of their identity and learning style, can achieve at their highest potential.
  • Responsibility: It is our responsibility to use our own talents and capacities in order to ensure that the mindsets and systems are in place for our students to have equitable, inclusive, and anti-bias classroom spaces.
  • Teamwork: We prioritize collaboration to ensure a stronger sense of belonging.  We lead ourselves and others in a way that places all students at the center of our work.

Position Overview: Our first Communications Director will play the important role of working with leadership to craft SELF's messaging and overall communication strategy to share the important work our team is doing and continue to build the SELF brand.

Roles and Responsibilities

  • Direct communications projects from end to end by developing work back plans that include multiple contributors and providing logistical support for release across multiple channels
  • Manage external communications including emails, presentations, briefs, scripts, and talking points that accurately captures voice, presence, and level of responsibilities
  • Drive strategy for core communications channels including social media, website, and email lists
  • Draft press releases, talking points, and presentations following organizational news
  • Determine metrics and systems and track user analytics to maximize channels to achieve SELF’s programmatic goals
  • Design marketing materials that drive leaders for recruitment applications 
  • Create a strategy for expanding SELF’s voice through conferences, podcasts, and blogs
  • Grow the audience for SELF programs
  • Identify content to post on social media (LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok) 
  • Draft and manage content for the website and other outlets
  • Identify areas of need, connect, and manage  appropriate supports (consultants, vendors, tools, etc.)
  • Organize weekly review processes to ensure adequate time for communications items to be reviewed and revised, if needed
  • Build and maintain a CRM through HubSpot for local and national markets in partnership with the Data Director
  • Consistently monitor SELF's brand and presence in media
  • Coach and assist team members in following style guide and brand voice outlines for all communications channels
  • Develop, manage processes, edit, and post video shorts 

SELF is a collaborative, entrepreneurial team and there may be additional responsibilities dependent on capacity, interest, skill, and organizational need. 

This is an exciting opportunity for anyone who:

  • Has exceptional communications abilities including writing, speaking, and active listening
  • Has a track record of success in projects, operations, or program management in a complex environment that requires juggling many different priorities and stakeholder groups
  • Demonstrates a commitment to community-driven change, advancing racial equity, and centering the perspectives of those most impacted in decision-making
  • Holds a belief in educational equity and innovative school models with professional experience in either education or another equity-related issue area preferred (affordable housing, public health, criminal justice reform, etc.)
  • Is a self-starting, entrepreneurial, adaptable, and actionable orientation, with experience in a startup-like environment
  • Is exceptional relationship and trust-building skills across a wide array of stakeholder groups (national system leaders, internal team members at all levels, local partners, parents/communities members)
  • Has good data analysis, problem-solving and critical thinking skills

Required Skills and Mindsets 

  • Modeling of SELF’s commitment to Diversity, Equity,  Inclusion, and Belonging (DEIB) demonstrated by a demonstrated willingness to examine personal identity and biases, clarity around how they lead others with an equity and inclusion lens, and comfort engaging in and model conversations around race, class, and privilege
  • Exceptional writing skills, both short and long-form storytelling communication materials, with the ability to compose and edit/ proof 
  • Excellent interpersonal and relationship skills with the ability to relate effectively to diverse groups of people from all social and economic segments of the community
  • Critical thinking skills with  the ability to organize, analyze, and synthesize disparate pieces of information and data
  • Strong strategic thinking around how to match programs offerings with community needs and market demand 
  • Ability to effectively and persuasively communicate with and diplomatically respond to current and potential funders, staff, community contacts, etc.
  • A high degree of initiative and a solutions orientation, the ability to identify and implement solutions independently in a fast-paced, highly entrepreneurial environment, and a track record of taking responsibility when faced with challenges
  • A professional demeanor and utmost discretion when dealing with confidential information
  • Willingness and ability to work outside of “traditional work hours” on specific occasions (i.e. working evenings and/or weekends when events require it)

Required Experience

  • 4+ years of relevant experience in communications, content creation, and/or public relations
  • Bachelor’s Degree
  • Experience writing and editing a wide variety of communication forms, including social media and other short-form platforms and longer blog posts, newsletters, funder materials, etc.

Location: As SELF is in the process of growing our programming nationally, you can live anywhere in the United States.

Regular travel to New Orleans and other regions is expected - approximately monthly. If employees live in the New Orleans area the expectation is that team members work in the office regularly and schedules will be determined with an employee's supervisor. 

Timeline: Interested applicants are encouraged to apply by Wednesday, September 21st. We may consider accepting applications on a rolling basis after this date. 

We will be reviewing applications beginning on September 21st and will be reaching out to all applications by Tuesday, September 27th. Initial interviews will begin in early October. 

Compensation and Benefits: The salary range  for this role is $70,000-$80,000 annually. SELF is committed to equitable talent practices and sets starting salaries using internal and external comparison data and a candidate’s specific experience. We also believe in taking care of our team members holistically. We aim to offer competitive salaries, but we also have a comprehensive benefits package, with health, dental, vision largely subsidized by SELF, a 401k employer contribution, short-term and long-term disability paid for by SELF, and a flexible spending and dependent care plan. 

Director Relationship: The Communications Director will report to the Chief External Affairs Officer.

SELF provides equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, age, disability, genetic information, marital status, amnesty, or status as a covered veteran in accordance.

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