Senior Manager of Program Operations

The Primary School - East Palo Alto, CA - Full time


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The Senior Manager of Program Operations is responsible for the smooth and effective operations of our flagship East Palo Alto site. The Senior Manager will partner with school, parent and health program leaders to build sustainable and scalable systems and processes, and work with the Director of Operations to support and execute talent, finance, facilities and compliance responsibilities.


The Senior Manager of Program Operations will provide supports to our ground-level service programs (the school, parent, and health programs) and ensure that organization-wide operations systems and structures are upheld and executed with fidelity.

Program Operations

  • Develop centralized systems, supports, and policies that apply across programs; identify opportunities for improving efficiency and effectiveness
  • Develop program systems to improve workflow and increase efficiency (e.g., data visualization, knowledge management, parent communication, etc.)
  • Liaise with organizational operations staff to ensure systems (e.g., purchasing, communications) are consistent and integrated across the organization
  • Advise on complex program operations and systems building needs within the school and parent program
  • Provide program and/or project management support for cross-program work streams (e.g., family recruitment and intake)

Human Capital & Talent Management

  • Support the recruitment and onboarding of teachers, parent coaches and other program staff
  • Ensure accurate time-tracking, PTO management and documentation for exempt and non-exempt staff
  • Monitor and manage teacher credentialing
  • Keep HR policies up-to-date and coordinate response to any misconduct or complaint
  • Manage consulting contracts with service providers (e.g., speech therapist)
  • Design and implement systems to manage interns and volunteers

Finance & Accounting

  • Lead monthly forecasting cycles and annual budgeting process with program leaders
  • Oversee purchasing processes, materials management, and supply storage across program offices/facilities
  • Ensure all program transactions are accurately coded on a timely basis
  • Manage contracts with vendors for program services (e.g., custodial, school food)


  • Manage large maintenance and upkeep requests, working with site owners, school district staff and contractors
  • Manage overall space allocation across properties and liaise with Director of Operations and real estate team when new space is necessary
  • Lead site readiness across school and parent programming, and ensure smooth start to each school year

Compliance & Risk

  • Manage compliance reporting for federal, state, and local entities (e.g., CACFP, State Preschool, State Licensing)
  • Support families in the completion of all required federal, state and local paperwork (e.g., State Preschool eligibility)


  • You have 3-5+ years experience in operations or administration, with experience in school-based operations preferred.
  • You know how to manage teams. You understand how to enable team members to achieve their potential, and can operate on both the big picture and minute levels simultaneously.
  • You are a practiced project manager and have an exceptional ability to plan for and drive forward complex, cross-functional projects that involve multiple individuals with diverse backgrounds and experiences.
  • You can see the problem, assess the gaps, and navigate your team towards effective solutions. You take on an innovative approach to creating workflows that are both efficient and results-oriented, but human- and community-centered.
  • You have demonstrated experience building and managing technical and human systems that optimize scarce resources (e.g., people, time and money), and you do not shy away from data or Excel.
  • You exhibit consistent implementation effectiveness. You are able to move seamlessly from design to plan to execution without losing sight of the high-level strategy or down-on-the-ground details.
  • You are comfortable with ambiguity and environments that change rapidly.
  • You excel at motivating individuals from different teams, including peers, to work together and achieve common goals.
  • You are excited to build a new model to deliver excellent outcomes for children and are passionate about constantly improving our work to get closer to this vision.
  • You exhibit sound, mature judgement and understand how to navigate diverse audiences and across differences.
  • You believe in the mission of The Primary School and that all children and families are capable of extraordinary things.

A Plus If

  • You are an East Palo Alto or Belle Haven native and/or have experience working with the East Palo Alto and Belle Haven communities.
  • You speak Spanish.

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Experience Level

Mid Level

The Primary School


The Primary School (TPS) is a new non-profit organization dedicated to dramatically improving health and educational outcomes for children. Fueled by the belief that the current model of school is too limited to close the achievement gap for our nation’s most at risk children, TPS is designing a new model of primary education and primary care which braids together education, health, and family support services starting at birth. In doing so, the school will expand the traditional definition of “school” in order to prepare all children to succeed in college, career, and life. TPS was seeded by the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, a major national philanthropy.

TPS’s innovative new model of support has three defining characteristics:

  • Provide integrated and comprehensive services: The new school will partner with an existing health care organization. Educators and health care professionals will provide integrated academic and health (physical, mental, and socio-emotional) services to students and families.
  • Begin serving children at birth: The school will admit students at or before birth, and will provide early childhood supports alongside medical care during the critical years of child development, ensuring that students are school-ready by the time they enter the elementary school grades.
  • Offer two-generation supports: Families will receive services, including primary care and intensive parenting education, to help them better support their children and become healthier themselves.

We opened our first site in East Palo Alto in 2016 and will serve 300 children and their families (age 0 to 5) by spring of 2017.

In addition to our core focus on directly serving children and families, TPS is committed to designing a model that is replicable in other communities. We are investing in design, research, evaluation, and dissemination that will allow us to replicate our model and/or transfer our learnings to others.

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