Senior Program Manager, Leadership Development

Peninsula Team – Schools
Full-time, Permanent
Innovate Public Schools is a nonprofit organization focused on improving public schools to make sure that all students - especially low-income students and students of color - have access to schools that will prepare them for success in college, careers and life. We publish easy-to-understand data and research to inform the public about which schools are excelling and which ones are struggling, as well as about the policy and school-based solutions that work. We work with educators from both school districts and charter schools to start excellent new public schools and redesign chronically low-performing schools. And we support and empower parents in high-need communities so they can effectively advocate for better schools and sustain community efforts over the long term.

Innovate is proud to be partnering deeply with the Ravenswood City School District in East Palo Alto, CA, as they work to transform themselves into one of the best districts in the Bay Area. Ravenswood is a small K-8 district with a high-need student population that has faced declining enrollment and significant teacher turnover. Under the leadership of a new school board and Superintendent, Ravenswood has laid out a new strategic plan and is tackling many of its underlying challenges. The district is attracting significant philanthropic and community support as it seeks to invest in students and staff to ensure that Ravenswood schools offer a world-class education to all students.

Innovate is supporting Ravenswood in multiple ways, including through our flagship World-Class Schools Fellowship, a year-long leadership development program aimed at supporting school leaders to create and/or lead successful schools, with a particular emphasis on students of color and low-income students. In addition, Innovate supports the design and implementation of high quality leadership development systems across schools, districts, and organizations and conducts intensive school audits focused on improving management, instruction, and school culture.

Reporting to the VP, Schools and the Regional VP, Peninsula, the Senior Program Manager, Leadership Development will primarily coach and support school leaders in the Ravenswood City School District as they work to transform their schools into some of the best in the Bay Area. Additionally, this individual will lead a major element of Innovate’s broader school support work, such as our School Site Review process or our School Innovation Fellows program.  

This is an excellent opportunity for a successful former school leader with a demonstrated track record of academic achievement with low-income students. We are seeking someone who is energized by coaching transformational leaders and leading program design efforts for a fast-paced, results-oriented organization that is making a huge difference in the quality of schools in the Bay Area. This position will focus on schools in East Palo Alto, working out of our Redwood City, San Jose or San Francisco office spaces, and will involve significant local travel within the San Francisco Bay Area. 

Start date: Summer 2020 (or sooner, if candidate is available)


    • Provide individualized leadership coaching, primarily to school leaders in Ravenswood City School District in East Palo Alto
    • Serve as an active member of Innovate’s Schools team, including designing and facilitating World-Class Schools fellowship sessions, and leading a programmatic element of Innovate’s school support work.
    • Serve as an active and effective member of Innovate’s Peninsula team, collaborating with teammates to achieve the region’s campaign goals.
    • Collaborate closely with the Innovate parent organizers who are working closely with parents in each Ravenswood school.
    • Respond to emerging needs of the organization, as determined by the VP, Schools and Regional VP, Peninsula.


    • Passion for Innovate Public Schools’ mission to initiate, support, and advocate for great public schools for low-income children and children of color.
    • At least 2-3 years of school leadership experience in a high-performing public school serving low-income students of color, with a proven track record of accelerating student academic achievement gains.
    • Demonstrated ability to provide exceptional coaching and mentoring to school leaders;Demonstrated ability to develop and deliver leadership development designed to increase academic achievement within schools.
    •  Experience leading people through a time of significant change, ideally in a school turnaround setting Deep commitment to elevating parent voice and developing parents as leaders.
    • Superior written, verbal and presentation communication skills with the ability to quickly and clearly convey complex topics to multiple audiences.
    • Outstanding interpersonal skills, with a demonstrated ability to create positive, trusting, and professional relationships with a diverse range of audiences, partners and constituent groups.
    • Strong leadership skills and a demonstrated ability to contribute to setting vision and strategic direction.
    • Start-up orientation, with the ability to excel in a work environment requiring flexibility, self-motivation, self-directed problem-solving, collaborative work style, results-orientation, sense of urgency and enthusiasm.
    • Proven ability to create strong school cultures rooted in an understanding of issues of equity, race, class, and restorative practices strongly preferred.
    • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent required, Master’s degree in education, policy, school leadership or related field preferred.
    • Written and oral fluency in Spanish strongly preferred.
Work Environment / Physical Demands
The work environment characteristics and physical demands described here are representative of those an employee encounters while successfully performing the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to sit; use hands to finger, handle, or feel objects, tools or controls; reach with hands and arms; and talk or hear. The employee must regularly lift and/or move up to 10 pounds. Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision, distance vision, color vision, peripheral vision, depth perception, and the ability to adjust focus. The noise level in the work environment is usually moderate.

The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work performed by the incumbent in this position. They are not intended to be an exhaustive list of all responsibilities, duties and skills.

To Apply
Submit your resume and thoughtful cover letter explaining your interest in the position, and the unique skills and qualities you would bring to this leadership role.

Innovate Public Schools provides equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, ethnicity, religion, gender, sexual orientation, national origin, age, disability, marital status, or status as a covered veteran in accordance with applicable federal, state and local laws.