Director, Mental Health Services

Turnaround for Children - New York City, NY - Full time

Turnaround for Children - New York City, NY - Full time

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About Turnaround

By studying the impact of adversity on the developing brain, Turnaround for Children is on to something big. It is connecting the dots between poverty, stress and academic performance. Turnaround translates the science that explains the impact of stress on learning and behavior into tools and strategies that teachers and administrators can use to cultivate a safe environment, reduce stress, increase engagement in learning and accelerate healthy student development and academic achievement.

Turnaround acts as a catalyst for change by raising awareness about and addressing the challenges that affect any school facing adversity, particularly those in high-poverty communities. Over the past 15 years, the non-profit has grown from an idea into an organization with a $15.2 million annual operating budget and over 60 employees. Currently, Turnaround partners with 13 schools in New York City, Newark, New Jersey and Washington, D.C. serving more than 5,000 students and 600 teachers. Turnaround is also expanding its reach via partnerships with KIPP D.C. and District of Columbia Public Schools by providing hands-on professional support, coaching and training sessions to leadership teams and educators. Turnaround's central office is located in midtown Manhattan.


This position is based in New York City.


This is an exempt level position that is not eligible for overtime.

About the Position

The Director of Mental Health Services is responsible for setting the vision and strategy of the mental health services components of Turnaround for Children’s program. The Director will also develop and support the implementation of structures, processes and procedures of mental health services within Turnaround partner schools and mental health agency partnerships.The Director of Mental Health Services is responsible for ensuring that implementation of school based support systems and child serving partnerships continue to be highly replicable, scalable and innovative by identifying research based science and best practice, contributing to curriculum development, coordinating and conducting professional development and monitoring efficacy of implementation and practice through data. The Director of Mental Health Services is a member of the Turnaround Program Leadership Team, reports directly to the Chief Program Officer, and works in collaboration with various teams across the organization.

Key Responsibilities (including but not limited to):

  • In collaboration with Turnaround’s Leadership, develop the mental health strategy and plan for implementation within the organization-wide strategic plan
  • Inform the design of operational structures connected to mental health strategy and implementation
  • Provide content expertise and support for the development of mental health strategy content and curriculum tools and leverage the sustainable use of community based resources
  • Act as lead for communication of mental health vision, strategy, design and implementation for all Turnaround service delivery pathways and provide consultation and communication to internal and external stakeholders
  • Provide technical assistance, coaching/support and professional development for Turnaround’s school based staff, in partnership with the Professional Development Team, to increase the school partners’ capacity to implement Multi-Tiered Systems of Support and leverage sustainable and strong working relationships with community based organizations to meet outcomes
  • Regularly conduct field observations of the Student Support and Mental Health Partnership activities to develop deep familiarity with the context in which the work is being delivered and to provide supports to our school-based student support efforts
  • Design clear indicators of performance and quality for mental health strategy and implementation that are research based, incorporating school and Turnaround school based staff feedback, and monitor quality
  • Foster and support an area-wide culture of continuous quality improvement based upon regular problem identification and solving activities undertaken by cross-organization and cross-functional groups
  • Create an efficient and satisfying professional environment, supportive of professional practice, intellectual curiosity and balance between service, quality and cost
  • Seek out opportunities for innovation and sustainability and assist others in developing executable strategies
  • Inform the design of and produce content for Community Based MOUs, in collaboration with other Turnaround departments; provide ongoing management of the MOUs
  • Conduct comprehensive outreach and identify mental health and community partners with a clearly documented evidence based methodology
  • Collaborate in the development of networks of learning with community based organizations and leverage the sharing of clinical expertise and community engagement with Turnaround partners
  • Strategically plan what school collaborative partnerships should look like, including goals, and conduct district/geography-specific needs assessments
  • Provide reporting about impact of mental health strategy and implementation to inform the overall design of the Turnaround program
  • Produce qualitative narrative and quantitative data about mental health strategy and implementation to Turnaround departments
  • Support the development and implementation of budgets to ensure continuous cost structure and quality improvements through the appropriate use of available resources
  • Manage projects of considerable scope and long-term regional impact; lend support, leadership and/or sponsorship to cross-department special projects
  • Provide support and content necessary for maintenance of grant deliverables and other reporting

Essential Qualifications and Experience

  • Masters in Social Work, clinical licensure required
  • Knowledge of student support and community based service delivery specifically in school based models
  • Experience in program development and management and in establishing partnerships and managing towards large scale impact
  • Experience in operations and clinical practice of mental health and community based agencies
  • Experience in developing and facilitating professional development for mental health practitioners
  • Experience in developing and monitoring of performance and quality indicators
  • Background in community based network development and stakeholder driven needs assessment
  • Knowledge of legal and compliance monitoring
  • Experience in the Mental Health field for 10+ years; knowledge of applicable community and clinical practice in communities impacted by trauma and adversity
  • Strong project management skills and strong attention to detail
  • Demonstrated ability to build and maintain relationships at all levels
  • Passion for Turnaround's mission and deep commitment to the students and schools it serves

Apply Now

Please visit our careers page to complete our online application. All applicants must submit a resume together with an in-depth cover letter outlining the ways in which their skills and experience align with our specific needs.

Candidates of color and from traditionally underrepresented backgrounds are highly encouraged to apply.

Compensation is competitive based on background and experience and includes excellent benefits. Turnaround for Children is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, age, religion, creed, disability, military and veteran status, genetic information or any other factor which cannot lawfully be used as a basis for an employment decision.

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