IDEA Public Schools, Chief Communications Officer

IDEA Public Schools - Remote - Full time

ORGANIZATION

IDEA Public Schools believes in college for ALL and everyone in the organization is committed to ensuring that all IDEA students graduate from college. IDEA Public Schools has grown from a small school to the fastest-growing network of tuition-free Pre-K-12 public charter schools in the United States sending 100% of our students to college. 50% of our students graduate from college in 6 years – that’s 8 times the national rate for students in similar communities.

IDEA was founded in 2000 in the Rio Grande Valley and has been averaging ~20% growth per year for the past decade. The organization now serves over 65,000 students across Texas and Louisiana, with plans for continued growth in IDEA’s current regions and upcoming launches in Tampa Bay (2021), Jacksonville, FL (2022), and Cincinnati, OH (2022). In 2021-22, IDEA will have 137 schools and 9,500 staff members serving 76,000 students.

When you choose to work at IDEA, you are part of the IDEA Team and Family. You will work alongside team members who set and reach ambitious goals every day, are excited to continue to grow with IDEA, and work relentlessly to make college for all a reality.  

To learn more about IDEA, visit ideapublicschools.org.

OPPORTUNITY

The Chief Communications Officer (CCO) is the senior leader responsible for stewarding IDEA’s brand locally and nationally, managing internal and external communications, driving our marketing, policy, and advocacy strategy. The CCO supports topline organizational goals including student and staff recruitment and retention and fundraising through marketing, creative services, and events.

Communications and Marketing have been part of the IDEA Operations team for the past dozen years, reporting to the COO. With IDEA’s growth, the importance of internal and external communication is greater than ever before. IDEA’s CEO JoAnn Gama has decided to elevate this scope of work to the Chiefs team, reporting directly to her. In 2021-22, the team will operate campaigns in thirteen regions in five states with a budget of ~$13M and over 30 Headquarters staff members. The CCO role is a tremendous opportunity for a senior leader who has previously overseen multiple markets and thrives in a fast-paced and high-growth environment.

RESPONSIBILITIES

The CCO will manage the Communications, Marketing, Creative Services, Events, and Policy & Advocacy teams at IDEA. TheCCO’s primary responsibilities will be to:

Oversee internal communication, media relations, family communications, and external communications, to include the following strategic priorities:

  • Organize the IDEA Story
    • Develop and execute an internal communications strategy that builds allegiance and mission alignment among IDEA’s team & family
    • Promote communications standards internally and externally
  • Expand the IDEA Audience & Create IDEA Storytellers
    • Engage in comprehensive outreach strategies to press and partners
    • Focus internal communications on key messages and increase opportunities and incentives for staff, students, and families to engage
  • Develop key communications resources
    • Develop quarterly publications (IMPACT Magazine, Persistence/Enrollment Publications, IDEA’s Annual Report) that help to steward persistence and brand awareness at IDEA
    • Create a crisis communications strategic plan and resources for IDEA campuses
  • Make IDEA a thought leader nationally in education/education reform
    • Promote IDEA leaders and programs as subject matter experts on key initiatives and objectives
    • Play a key role in leveraging national media to drive broad public understanding of IDEA’s mission and impact and supported key organizational goals

Direct and manage all brand strategy initiatives to include brand identity, brand positioning and related campaign activities for four top-line organizational goals (enrollment, hiring, fundraising, and retention) across all regional media markets

  • Act as the authority and lead promoter of the IDEA brand, ensuring consistent brand expression through all touch points
  • Establish guidance for all creative marketing communications and collateral across all channels to ensure that materials consistently comply with brand standards and strategy
  • Manage the overall health of the brand by leveraging data and analytics, and tracking key brand measurements
  • Provide strategic and tactical brand and creative-services support for key organizational initiatives
  • Oversee social media and public relations strategy to keep affiliation-building news top of mind for IDEA families and other stakeholders

Partner with IDEA’s Executive Directors and Advancement Team to successfully launch in new regions

  • Develop and implement strategic plans, communications, resources, and media relations tactics to help generate leads and increase brand awareness and recognition in new regions
  • Develop go-to-market strategy for each new market, including insights gathering via focus groups, positioning and messaging strategy, and ground softening marketing plan
  • Create and oversee an analytics infrastructure to track and monitor efforts across marketing channels

Partner with other senior leaders to ensure IDEA achieves its top-line goals

  • Work in partnership with the Human Assets team to establish and execute a marketing strategy with tailoring towards regional context to successfully drive hiring goals
  • In partnership with Operations and Academic Services leaders, lead the go-to-market and student and family onboarding strategy for the recruitment and enrollment cycle
  • Partner with the Advancement team to achieve annual fundraising goals

QUALIFICATIONS

The ideal candidate will have the following:

  • Education: Bachelor’s degree required
  • Experience: 10+ years of professional experience in marketing and communications, with at least 5 years of senior leadership experience
  • Location:Living in an IDEA region is highly preferred; remote for the ideal candidate

We are looking for an amazing person for this role – one who has diverse background and experiences, is inspired by our mission, and highly-motivated to change children’s lives through free, public, college-preparatory education. You’ll be right at home here if you cultivate strong relationships, understand the power of diversity, advocate for equity, aspire to lead through inclusion, push yourself, your work, and the people around you to the next level, learn from failure and overcome adversity. IDEA expects the Chief Communications Officer to Live IDEA’s Values:

  • Believes and is committed to our mission: that all students are capable of getting to and through college
  • Committed to leading by example to strengthen diversity, uplift equity, and honor inclusion
  • Is driven by outcomes and results, and wants to be held accountable for them
  • Has a propensity for action, willing to make mistakes by doing in order to learn and improve quickly
  • Thrives in an entrepreneurial, high-growth environment; is comfortable with ambiguity and change
  • Seeks and responds well to feedback, which is shared often and freely across all levels of the organization
  • Works through silos and forges strong cross-departmental relationships in order to achieve outcomes

COMPENSATION AND BENEFITS

IDEA offers a competitive salary commensurate with experience in a similar position with the potential for a substantial annual bonus based on meeting ambitious goals. IDEA offers significant paid time off including 15 days per year plus four weeks of school holidays and several long weekends. We offer a comprehensive benefits plan, including plans that cover the entire employee premium for the base medical plan and subsidizing the costs for a spouse/domestic partner and children. Other benefits include dental and vision plans, disability, life insurance, parenting benefits, flexible spending account options, and retirement benefits, including Texas Teacher Retirement System (TRS) participation and a 403(b) plan.

TO APPLY

Please submit a resume online at https://apply.workable.com/edgility-consulting-4/j/CD7E765FBA/. For additional questions about this position or to speak with someone about your interest, please contact Jonathan Howard at jhoward@edgilityconsulting.com.

IDEA Public Schools is an equal opportunity employer and an organization that values diversity. Recruiting staff to create an inclusive organization is a priority, and we encourage applicants from all backgrounds. Candidates are evaluated solely on their qualifications to perform the work required.

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Role

C Level Executive Leadership

Experience Level

Senior Level

IDEA Public Schools

IDEA Public Schools believes in college for ALL and everyone in the organization is committed to ensuring that all IDEA students graduate from college. IDEA has grown from a small school to the fastest-growing network of tuition-free Pre-K-12 public charter schools in the US.
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