Associate Director, 9-12 Humanities (ELA Focus)

Achievement First - Multiple Locations - Full time

Start Date: July 1, 2022 or earlier

Team: Team Teaching & Learning

Location: Brooklyn, NY, New Haven, CT, or Providence, RI

Who are we? Achievement First (AF) exists to address the legacy of racism in education in America. Our mission is to deliver on the promise of equal educational opportunity for all of America’s children. That is what we work for every day. We know that all children—regardless of race, zip code, or economic status—deserve access to great schools. At the core of our approach is our shared journey by our students and staff to fulfill our incredible -potential.

Just the facts. Achievement First has consistently been rated one of the top charter school networks in the country, AND we are still learning and growing. AF is a non-profit 501(c)3 organization that currently supports 41 public charter schools in New York, Connecticut, and Rhode Island. The mission of AF is to deliver on the promise of equal educational opportunity for all children. We currently employ more than 2,000 staff -- 47% of whom identify as Black, Latinx, or Multi-racial -- who collectively educate more than 14,300 students in Brooklyn, NY; Providence, RI; and New Haven, Bridgeport, and Hartford, CT. More than 85% of our students qualify for free or reduced-priced lunch. Our students are proving what’s possible by achieving breakthrough results in terms of academic achievement and long-term college persistence.

Our focus and reach extend beyond the students and communities that we serve directly. Achievement First is an engaged and prominent partner in the broader education-reform movement, partnering with schools and networks from across the country and openly sharing all our resources with educators free of charge. We currently serve more than 100,000 additional students through two key partnership initiatives. Our Charter Network Accelerator is an intensive cohort-based training program for CMO leaders (with a focus on leaders of color) who are looking to increase the number of top-quality options available to parents across the country; and through our Navigator Program, we provide coaching and support for district and charter schools who want to adopt and adapt our curriculum and instructional practices to help students achieve breakthrough results.

Why work at Achievement First? First and foremost: you should work at AF if you believe in ourvalues and want to surround yourself with people who share them. We are committed to leading for racial equity. We approach our work with humility, humanity, and the recognition that both what we do and how we do it must model the equity we seek. We strive for excellence by setting a high bar in all areas and pursuing it relentlessly. We care about the whole person and are known to be as warm as we are demanding. We choose joy and actively seek out moments of humor, gratitude, and deeper purpose for ourselves and with each other. We know that we will go further together and intentionally choose to join forces on both big and small things. We name brutal facts, embrace challenge, and see our mistakes as opportunities to get better.

Finally, come to Achievement First if you want to help support schools that are striving to redefine what’s possible in education. We are obsessed with getting better and are working to create some of the best schools in the country - schools that support not just students’ academic success but also their social-emotional learning, identity development, independence as learners, passion/enrichment/extracurriculars, and life-long fulfillment. AND, at AF, we believe getting better starts with looking in the mirror. We have done a lot of that lately, as we have more aggressively confronted our own biases and unacceptable gaps in our student experience. We are committed to addressing inequity within our systems, culture, and practices and resolve to do the critical work needed to ensure equity for our scholars and staff. So, come to Achievement First if reflection, challenge, and growth feed your soul.

The Achievement First High School ELA & Humanities Program

In AF High School humanities programs, students are invited to explore the various dynamics of the human condition – what it means to grow up, to tell your own story, to connect with the stories other people tell, to take a stand, and to cultivate connection and power through the deliberate use of language. At its root, our programs emphasize inquiry, disciplinary-specific critical thinking, and culturally responsive pedagogy. The teacher’s central role is to facilitate critical thinking, to hold a high bar for quality of thinking, and to support students as they actively work toward mastering common core and AP standards, and strengthen their ability to critically evaluate texts, and develop world knowledge, literacy, and communication skills.

Our programs are grounded in several core philosophies:

-Active, purposeful, and effective reading that supports literacy development as well as critical analysis and evaluation. Students develop the skills to approach texts across courses and make meaning in the content of an academic task or question.

-Students are constructors and co-constructors of their learning. Students learn how to build, utilize, deploy, and construct knowledge because they develop both the key cognitive skills and the academic habits they need to be leaders of their own learning.

-Students write to express their learning, write to learn, and write as a thinking process. Student writing reflects self-knowledge, sound ideas, composition and research skills, and complex critical thinking.

Position Summary

The Associate Director, 9-12 ELA is an integral part of the high school ELA & humanities team that works with principals, academic deans, and teachers to craft and drive the vision behind an exemplary ELA & humanities program. We work closely with these cohorts to ensure that they develop the tools, skills, and knowledge necessary to navigate a changing landscape with the introduction of the Common Core State Standards through professional and curricular development, core skill building, classroom observations and data analysis. This position offers the opportunity to be at the forefront of this instructional work at one of the nation’s top charter school networks

Responsibilities of the Associate Director of 9-12 ELA will include, but are not limited to the following:

ELA & Humanities Program Support & Design: Support the high school ELA & humanities team in continuing to build a robust program and curriculum

Support Program Vision and Implementation

■Act as a thought partner to the HS ELA and Humanities Directors, Senior Director, and network leadership teams to help synthesize the network vision for ELA and humanities instruction and contribute to the development of clear programmatic recommendations for school leaders.

Develop Curriculum

■Develop exemplary curricular materials that are aligned to the Common Core State Standards

■Manage lead planners and consultants by providing formal and informal feedback on their materials. Specifically, these materials will include unit plans, assessments, and their accompanying lesson plans.

Analyze Data

■Deeply analyze student achievement data (student work samples, weekly quizzes, interim assessments, and state tests) to determine how to better develop materials and provide targeted, high quality teacher training.

ELA & Humanities Program Execution Support: Drive strong results in partnership with schools

Facilitate Professional Development

■With the high school ELA and Humanities team, develop professional development sessions that support vision setting for the program, implementation of the curriculum, and growth of core skills and knowledge.

Coaching and Observations

■Conduct focused observations to push content-specific instructional practices, improve implementation of curriculum, gather information on best practices, and pilot new projects.

■Develop the instructional eye of deans and principals through focused co-observations and feedback.

Coordinate Core ELA and Humanities Program Systems

■Support the HS ELA Directors in the coordination of school leaders, deans, and teachers in maintaining quality control of core systems integral to teaching and learning, such as process-based assessment, data collection, etc.

Depending on COVID Response needs, potentially support schools more directly at times (e.g., teaching)

Skills and Characteristics

Curricular and Programmatic Vision:Has in-depth content and pedagogical expertise in ELA or humanities

Brings an Equity Lens to the Core Work: Consistently ensures that the Leading for Racial Equity lens will be a required, explicit part of priority planning, goal-setting, professional development planning, and progress monitoring for school leaders and network leaders

Practices Self-Awareness: Consistently reflects on “How am I positioned (relative to privilege and/or oppression) in all aspects of my identities (e.g. race, class, gender, language)? How might these identities impact people and our process?”

Focuses on Relational Trust and Human Values:Notices and actively repairs broken trust/relationships; notices and addresses patterns of exclusion in meetings and 1:1 interactions; holds time to address and lean into difficult conversations.

Designs with not for: Actively looks for and insists on decision-making that requires us to listen, learn, and co-create with the people most impacted by work/decisions.

Utilizes a Growth Mindset: Consistently identifies and addresses gaps in previous mindsets/skills and perceives the strength and performance of others through a growth mindset. Actively seeks feedback to improve and demonstrates growth in response to feedback.

Employs Strategic Thinking: Utilizes multiple perspectives and data points to drive to a clear understanding of the current state relative to organizational goals and best practices and pushes for deeper understandings of how and why this came to be. Sets clear, obtainable, and timely goals which move work and the program forward and proactively plans how to involve and invest others in those goals.

Analyzes and Responds to Data: Accurately identifies strengths and gaps based on existing data, considers additional information which may/may not be included in the dataset and provides specific insights based upon multiple data points.

Educational Background and Work Experience

●A bachelor’s degree

●A proven, multi-year track record of exemplary ELA achievement, especially the achievement of low-income, minority students

○Four or more years of highly successful ELA teaching experience OR a minimum of two years of ELA teaching experience with exceptional results if there is relevant prior work experience.

○Two or more years of highly successful teaching experience in a school serving primarily low-income students.

Occasional weekend or evening work and travel within New York, Connecticut, and Rhode Island are required.


Salary for this position is competitive and commensurate with experience. For NYC Metro Area based employees the salary range is $87,100 to $91,600. For CT, RI, and remote employees, the salary range is $77,500 to $81,600. Achievement First also offers a comprehensive benefits package.

Application Instructions:

Click here to apply

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:

Achievement First is an Equal Opportunity Employer Achievement First requires vaccination against COVID-19 for all employees. Reasonable accommodations based on a qualifying disability or sincerely held religious belief are being considered in accordance with applicable law. Click here to read our full policy.

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Brooklyn, New York
New Haven, Connecticut
Providence, Rhode Island


Project Management

Experience Level

Mid Level

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