Chief Learning Officer - Making Waves Academy

Location: Richmond, CA

Type: Full Time

Min. Experience: Senior Manager/Supervisor

About the Organization

Making Waves was founded in 1989 as an education support program to help address the disparity in educational opportunities for low-income students in Richmond, CA and to help them prepare for and graduate from college.  For decades, through comprehensive programming and services, Making Waves has helped prepare and support first-generation college students to graduate from competitive institutions across the country.

In 2007, Making Waves Academy (MWA) Middle School was founded, a public charter school offering a rigorous fifth to eighth grade academic program with a focus on college and career readiness.  The Making Waves Academy Upper School opened in 2011 and provides rich academic course offerings, career exploration and extensive college advisement.

MWA currently serves about 800 students in grades 5-12 and 95% or more of its first three graduating classes were accepted to college.  About 70% gained admission to four-year schools and 25% or more gained admission to two-year schools.  The first phase of a five-year strategic growth plan is underway, with a new expanded middle school opening in the fall of 2018.  In the future, MWA will ultimately grow to serve roughly 6,000 students on three K-12 campuses, while our sister organization, Making Waves College and Alumni Program (CAP) will continue to support up to 2,000 of our alumni in persisting through college.

 

Position Summary

The Chief Learning Officer(CLO) is a newly designed role for the organization, signifying the fundamental importance and mission-critical nature of learning at all levels.  The CLO take full ownership of the organization wide learning vision and strategy,  building upon existing and designing new approaches to inform learning for both students and adults in all domains (curriculum & instruction, cultural competency, social emotional learning, technology).  The CLO and the learning team are the hub where all types of learning across the organization intersect and where the programs and structures for maximizing student and adult learning and development are created.  

MWA is committed to holistic learning and has invested deeply in social emotional and psychological support and learning.  In the fall of 2018, MWA is also becoming a 1:1 (student-to-device) school, utilizing technology-assisted learning for differentiation and self-paced learning.  Leading a growing team of learning area needs, and reporting directly to the CEO, the CLO will help set the vision and infrastructure for how the central office integrates all of this to optimally support schools, students and staff in learning.

 The CLO will lead efforts to develop a cohesive and effective strategy for student and adult learning in new and existing areas, drawing on research-based best practices and promising innovative approaches to maximize learning, mastery, and performance.   Existing areas of learning include technology-assisted learning and a teacher residency program.  New programs to be brought online include K-4th grade learning and system-wide curriculum and instruction.  Additional programs to be brought on in the near future include social-emotional learning and cultural competency.

The CLO also leads a team of learning area leads, modeling and leading workshops for internal stakeholders utilizing the desired learning practices. Finally, the CLO will communicate effectively to members of their team, internal stakeholders, external constituent groups, and the Board of Directors.

Ideal candidates have a growth mindset lens and bring both a deep knowledge of student learning and instruction, as well as adult learning and/or talent development. 

 

Primary Responsibilities & Key Outcomes:

Researched-Based Learning & Assessment Strategies for Student & Adult Learning

  • Lead the development of a researched-based, comprehensive, and effective strategic approach to student and adult learning that supports optimizing learning for mastery and differentiated and self-paced learning approaches through technology
  • Ensure strategy integrates and embeds the various learning approaches including efficacy-based practices, data-informed instruction, effective assessment design, and technology-assisted learning, along with the use and integration of social-emotional learning approaches and culturally informed approaches 
  • Develop a framework for evaluating all MWA learning practices for evaluation and effectiveness; develop and utilize tools such as dashboards and scorecards to help us identify progress and learning across the schools

Scale & Adaptive Change

  • Develop an elegant statement that summarizes the 21st century learning approach for students and adults that informs a comprehensive approach to learning at all of our campuses and within our central office
  • Develop some common frameworks to help inform learning approaches, training, and professional development for the new campuses to be brought online over the next 5-10 years
  • Develop a plan that updates MWA’s instructional learning approaches and the ability scale these approaches for use at other MWA campuses in the near future

Develop & Support the Learning Team

  • Create a Learning Team vision and identity as the organization grows its central office to provide infrastructure and support a growing number of schools
  • Support the development of individual learning team members, modeling desired approaches, and specifically in the areas of:  a) the pace of change, b) developing goals, timelines, metrics, and milestones, c) soliciting feedback from stakeholders, and d) building towards agreements

PD, Consultation, and Support to Practitioners at MWA

  • Conduct a needs assessment of current practice; build upon strengths and address gaps in designing 21st century learning programs and practices
  • Support, recommend, consult, and provide thought partnership with MWA leadership with respect to student and adult learning approaches and practices 
  • Develop a framework for use by Learning Team members (for use with internal and external stakeholders) to build agreements and develop activities and actions that will guide MWA learning strategies and approaches when supporting, recommending, and consulting with site-based instructional leadership and stakeholders.

 

Qualifications

  • Passion for MWA’s mission and demonstrated commitment to supporting first generation students and/or children and families from historically underserved communities
  • Ideally a minimum of ten years experience in a leadership role, with extensive experience leading, developing, or managing systems for adult learning and student learning
  • Track record of leadership in setting high-level vision and strategy with the ability to lead a team to operationalize and execute the strategy
  • Experience building and implementing programs across systems or networks of multiple schools 
  • Experience as an instructional leader with extensive knowledge of curriculum, instruction, and student learning modalities
  • Knowledge of adult learning, talent development or organizational development with experience designing adult learning program, frameworks and goals
  • Ability to set high-level vision and strategy and ability to operationalize and execute the strategy
  • Systems-focused with experience designing instructional or learning programs and infrastructure
  • Views students, families and colleagues through an assets-based and efficacy lens; demonstrates authentic appreciation of, ability to connect with, and see strengths in individuals from diverse backgrounds
  • Experience having served on a leadership team is ideal; practices humility and self reflection in leadership orientation
  • Highly organized
  • Strong in data analysis and synthesis
  • Balances innovation and orientation for outcomes
  • Highly relational and collaborative with the ability to influence effectively in a matrixed organization

 

Salary and Benefits

Salary for this position is highly competitive and commensurate with experience. MWA also provides innovative and comprehensive benefits, including cost of living stipends, tuition assistance and forgivable home loans after three years of service. 

Making Waves Academy is an equal opportunity employer. Candidates from diverse backgrounds are encouraged to apply

 

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