Pennsylvania Coalition Manager

Website Teach Plus

(Remote in Pennsylvania; Harrisburg, PA, preferred)

What We Do

Teach Plus is a national nonprofit whose mission is to empower excellent, experienced, and diverse teachers to take leadership over key policy and practice issues that advance equity, opportunity, and student access. The Teach Plus team exists to breathe life into the Student Opportunity Mandate: All students should have the opportunity to achieve their potential in an education system defined by its commitment to equity, responsiveness to individual needs, and ability to prepare students for postsecondary success. At the heart of our work is advocacy for collective impact, beginning with classroom teachers.

At Teach Plus, we believe in equity-driven teacher leadership. When we invest in developing our most talented teachers into teacher leaders who are well-informed, persuasive, and prepared to lead, they have deep leverage in advancing equity for students, especially for students of color, low-income students, and those from underserved communities. To close the opportunity gap and to ensure equitable access to a world-class education for all students in the schools and communities we serve, we ignite systems change at multiple levels through our Policy Fellowship and Instructional Leadership programs designed to inspire and equip teachers. We are committed to leading change in our Equity Focus Areas.

What You’ll Do

Reporting to the Pennsylvania Executive Director, you will play a lead role in Teach Plus PA’s policy and advocacy coalition work, all in service to improving outcomes for students and communities across PA. Specifically, you will both represent the organization within coalitions we participate in and take the lead in launching, expanding, directing, and/or managing coalitions that Teach Plus leads or co-leads. You will also help determine and execute on Teach Plus PA’s larger policy priorities and strategies, represent Teach Plus PA externally and through strategic relationships with policymakers and media, and serve as a liaison and source of policy/political expertise for Teach Plus PA staff and fellows.

The Coalition Manager will be responsible for the following:

Coalition Leadership

The Coalition Manager will be responsible for ensuring that the coalitions in which Teach Plus PA plays a leading role operate strategically, efficiently, and effectively in order to build political power and ultimately achieve policy wins that increase opportunity for students in Pennsylvania:

Launch a new statewide coalition focused on early literacy policy and advancing the science of reading; this will include planning and implementing a summit or other event by January 2025 to kick off the coalition, recruiting coalition partners, making decisions about coalition structure and governance, setting short-term and longer-term policy goals and strategies, supporting fundraising efforts, and building the coalition’s brand, size, and credibility in its first year and beyond.
Manage the literacy coalition on an ongoing basis and serve as the primary representative of the coalition with external audiences. This will include leading committee meetings, developing meeting agendas, tracking and following up on coalition next steps (not only for Teach Plus PA staff but other coalition partners), supporting the planning and facilitation of coalition meetings, engaging coalition members in advocacy activities (such as Hill days, sign-on letters, email and phone campaigns, op-ed campaigns, press conferences, legislative meetings, and other events), recruiting new coalition members, drafting communications, tracking bills and political intelligence, meeting with policymakers and other power brokers, engaging with members of the press, and managing the day-to-day operations and tactics of the coalition to ensure achievement of its policy goals.
Support the Pennsylvania Executive Director in management of the #PANeedsTeachers coalition, which Teach Plus PA co-founded and co-leads. This will involve similar tasks as for the literacy coalition, but with more division of labor across the Coalition Manager, the PA Executive Director, our partners at NCEE, and several coalition consultants.
Support the Pennsylvania Executive Director in leadership of the PA Schools Work coalition, where Teach Plus PA leads the government relations committee. This will involve participating in committee meetings; supporting the PA Executive Director in preparing for, facilitating, and following up on government relations committee meetings; and potentially taking over leadership of the government relations committee in the future.
As possible and in collaboration with the Pennsylvania Executive Director, represent Teach Plus PA in other coalitions aligned with our policy priorities, including the Pennsylvania Educator Diversity Consortium, PA WInS (Pennsylvanians for Welcoming and Inclusive Schools), the Pennsylvania Department of Education Committee for Educator Talent Recruitment, the Philadelphia Citywide Talent Coalition, Early Learning PA campaigns (Start Strong PA and Pre-K for PA) and other existing or new coalitions in which we participate.
Work with the PA Executive Director to continuously evaluate Teach Plus PA’s strategic engagement in coalitions to maximize impact in alignment with our strategic goals while recognizing organizational constraints around staff time and capacity.
Think creatively and strategically about how to expand our coalitions, with a particular eye to further engaging communities most impacted by education policies (e.g. students and parents) and non-traditional educational advocates (e.g. business leaders, chambers of commerce, etc.).
Think creatively and strategically about how to engage coalition members with varying levels of policy and political experience and expertise in a way that builds their capacity and agency while honoring their lived experiences and unique strengths.

Policy, Advocacy, and Strategic Positioning

The Coalition Manager will collaborate with the Pennsylvania Executive Director and Policy Manager on Teach Plus Pennsylvania policy strategy and leverage relationships that enable Teach Plus PA to have an impact on critical policy issues by:

In partnership with the PA Executive Director and Policy Manager, identify key policy areas, goals, and priorities that advance Teach Plus PA’s mission and strategic goals based on deep knowledge of the policy and political landscape, education research, and the aspirations of the communities we serve; develop and implement advocacy strategies and tactics to advance these policy priorities.
In partnership with the Teach Plus PA team, national Communications team, and national Policy & Resarch team, develop effective and compelling research and messaging documents to elevate and advance our policy priorities, including reports, policy briefs, fact sheets, op-eds, etc.
Proactively build and maintain relationships with policymakers, district leaders, education organizations, journalists, and other key power brokers in Harrisburg and across the state; strategically spot and seize opportunities to build your personal network in a way that furthers Teach Plus’ goals and positions you as a go-to for policymakers and others.
Demonstrate credibility and agency as a policy leader in order to both build Teach Plus PA’s profile and influence as well as to open doors for our coalitions (and our teachers) to have impact and authentic audiences for their stories and policy recommendations. This will involve proactively identifying policy issues you need to build expertise on and proactively pursuing learning on these issues in a self-directed way by seeking out reports, experts, and other resources; staying up-to-date on political updates and progress on relevant bills and committees; writing and speaking about policy issues publicly (at press conferences, in op-eds, in reports, in testimony, etc.) in ways that will lead to opportunities for yourself and our coalitions.
Utilize deep knowledge and understanding of the political landscape and process to proactively identify windows of opportunity for policy change and support coalition members in developing effective strategy and tactics for achieving policy goals.
Develop, draft, and/or provide feedback on legislation related to our policy goals.
Craft strategy, tactics, and messaging to advance our policy goals independently and collaboratively.

Subject Matter Expert and Liaison to Teach Plus PA Staff, Teacher Leaders, and Policy Fellows

The Coalition Manager will join a growing Teach Plus PA team (nine team members by fall 2024) working across both policy and practice to advance strategic goals, including making Pennsylvania the fastest-improving state in the country in early literacy in the next decade. As our team grows and our desired impact becomes more ambitious, the ability to share information and expertise will be critical. The Coalition Manager will serve as a subject matter expert on the policy issues of their focus coalitions (particularly early literacy/ the science of reading and educator workforce) across our Teach Plus PA programs and will be a go-to source of up-to-date policy and political intelligence for Teach Plus PA staff and teacher leaders. This will include:

Attending PA Policy Fellowship meetings and events and supporting with facilitation periodically (as needed).
Providing strategic coaching, support, and updates to the Science of Reading, Expanding and Diversifying the Teacher Pipeline, and Reimagining Teacher Preparation working groups, either via the PA Policy Manager or senior fellows of those working groups.
Serving as a guest speaker and/or subject matter expert for other Teach Plus PA programs as needed.
Developing extremely strong communications systems with the PA team (especially the PA Executive Director and Policy Manager) to ensure relevant policy and political updates/decisions/intel from coalitions, lawmaker meetings, and other sources are shared in a timely manner that maximizes the team’s time and allows staff and fellows to make fully informed decisions based on the best thinking and most up-to-date information of the collective. This will require a strong ability to summarize, synthesize, and prioritize in a fast-paced and information-rich environment, as well as a commitment to breaking down silos and avoiding information hoarding.

Who You Are

Ideal Qualifications, Expertise, and Past Experience:

Experience and successful track record in policy, government relations, political strategy, communications, advocacy, and/or community organizing, preferably with specific experience related to education policy or advocacy.
Experience working as part of a coalition, ideally in a leadership role.
Experience leading large projects and/or teams is strongly preferred.
Expertise in at least one of the following education policy issues is strongly preferred: the science of reading, teacher workforce, teacher preparation, school finance/funding.
Prior experience working with or within the Pennsylvania General Assembly or Pennsylvania Department of Education is a significant plus but not required.
Previous teaching experience and/or participation in the PA Policy Fellowship is a significant plus but not required.

Ideal Skills:

Excellent communication skills, including writing, editing, and public speaking; attention to clarity and precision in communications with a focus on not only the “what” but the “how” and “why;” high levels of responsiveness via email and other forms of communications. Frequent and proactive communication with the Executive Director, colleagues, fellows, and external partners is an absolute must in this role.
Ability to learn quickly, organize/synthesize high volumes of information, and work in a fast-paced and sometimes unpredictable environment.
Excellent relationship-building skills and emotional intelligence.
Excellent strategic planning skills, including long-term and backwards planning based on high-leverage impact goals, strong attention to detail and logistics, ability to facilitate group planning, ability to plan for multiple events and projects simultaneously and far-in-advance without high levels of oversight, and ability to monitor progress and proactively course-correct when needed.
Impeccable organizational and project management skills, including ability to manage multiple priorities and projects simultaneously, prioritize tasks and manage your time strategically and independently, complete tasks in a timely and independent manner, create structures and communications systems for team/collaborative projects (including clear ownership of tasks and plans for follow-through), and frequently/proactively communicate progress and needs on assigned projects. Our team uses Asana for project and task management.

Ideal Dispositions:

A passion for the mission of Teach Plus and dedication to advancing equity, opportunity, and outcomes for students at all times.
A deep belief that policy and advocacy are critical levers in advancing better outcomes for students.
Curiosity and a willingness to engage in constant inquiry and on-the-job learning to expand your own impact as well as that of Teach Plus PA as a whole.
Proactivity and initiative to pursue the learning, opportunities and actions that will support your effectiveness in the role without passively waiting for them to come to you.
A growth mindset for yourself and others; an eagerness to seek out and act on feedback to continuously improve (as well as a willingness to provide meaningful constructive feedback to others).
A commitment to excellence in your own work.

Commitment to Diversity

To better serve the teachers and students at the core of our mission, Teach Plus is committed to maximizing the diversity of our organization. We are an equal-opportunity employer and encourage individuals of all ethnic and racial backgrounds, sexual orientations, and gender identities to apply to our positions.

Compensation and Benefits

The compensation range for this position is between $80,000 and $95,000, and salary will be determined based on the selected candidate’s specific qualifications, years of relevant experience, specialized knowledge, and internal equity. Teach Plus offers a benefits package including medical, dental, and vision insurance, 3% matching 401k plan, disability and life insurance, and Flexible Spending Accounts for medical and childcare expenses. Teach Plus offers generous time off benefits, including 15 vacation days, 3 personal days, 5 sick days, 11 holidays, and winter break. Additionally, Teach Plus offers paid parental leave and a 4-week paid sabbatical for every five years of service.

Location, Travel, and Hours

Although this remote position will be conducted virtually (primarily from a home office), candidates must reside in Pennsylvania. Residency in or near Harrisburg is preferred; candidates must be willing to travel up to 25% to Harrisburg, with periodic travel to other parts of Pennsylvania, such as Philadelphia and Pittsburgh. This role may require occasional nights and weekends (approximately 2-3 evenings per month and 2-3 weekends per year) to support policy sessions and meet with teachers and policymakers. We anticipate a start date in August 2024.

How to Apply

To apply, please complete the online application found here. The application requires you to upload a resume and cover letter. The cover letter should explain your interest in the position and describe relevant qualifications and experience. Teach Plus will receive applications until the position is filled.


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