Deputy Program Director, Research and Innovation, WestEd ASDS
WestEd is a national, non-profit, non-partisan organization working at the nexus of education research, policy and practice to promote excellence, achieve equity, and improve learning for children, youth, and adults. In pursuit of this ambitious mission, WestEd develops and disseminates high impact, high quality, and high utility research-based knowledge to education and other communities. The organization employs deeply mission-oriented professionals –- many of whom are recognized experts in issues ranging from school and district improvement and assessment, technology-enhanced learning, STEM, youth resiliency and health, school climate, literacy, and early childhood development and education –- thereby enabling WestEd to understand, communicate effectively, and collaborate with a diverse clientele. Committed to making a significant, positive impact with and for its clients, WestEd works with policy makers and practitioners, crafting and using the best available research to meaningfully influence lives of infants, children, youth, and adults.
With operating revenues of $124 million and over 600 employees deployed across 16 U.S. offices, WestEd’s reach and impact is vast; the organization, working at the local, state, and federal levels for more than four decades, operates twelve distinct programs, develops and disseminates products, and provides a wide range of services, including in the areas of evaluation, research, and intervention strategies -– in partnerships with schools, districts, education agencies, foundations, policymakers, and others also committed to education improvement and reform and human development. For more detailed information about the agency, its history, programs, governance, staff, leadership, products, and services, visit our agency website: WestEd.org and/or review our Annual Reports.
Assessment and Standards Development Services
The Assessment and Standards Development Services (ASDS) program is involved extensively at the local, state, regional, and national levels in planning, developing, implementing, and evaluating standards and assessment tools, methods, and systems. Some of ASDS work is aimed at revealing how well students or workers are learning or performing; other parts of our work address broader concerns of accountability at all levels (classroom to state) and program or school success.
ASDS provides technical and policy support at state, local, and national levels. It serves as the test-development contractor for high-stakes assessment programs in several states, conducts standards and assessment evaluation and alignment studies, engages in projects that address issues related to incorporating rigorous academic content standards and measuring instructional effectiveness, as well as to developing areas of the field such as alternative school accountability, academic language, and access and accommodations for English learners and students with disabilities. ASDS houses the Center for Standards and Assessment Implementation (CSAI), a federally designated national comprehensive content center charged with providing research-supported technical assistance related to standards and assessment implementation to regional centers and state departments of education
ASDS is seeking a strong program leader and senior manager to serve as the Deputy Program Director, Research and Innovation (R&I). The individual hired to fill this position will work closely with the ASDS Senior Program Director and program managers, as well as WestEd’s Institutional Development department to lead research, strategy, and business development initiatives in areas relevant to assessment, standards, accountability, technology, and evaluation. The individual also will be expected to provide management leadership across the program and provide innovation in client services (e.g., technical assistance, consultation, partnerships), product development (e.g., writing technical reports, policy briefs, assessment design), business development (e.g., establishing strategic partnerships, securing project funding), and operations (e.g., improving internal processes, integrating projects across teams). The individual will be expected to have deep technical expertise in a core area (e.g., educational measurement, college and career readiness, diverse learners, educational technology) and a breadth of relevant experiences that will enable him or her to effectively lead complex projects, manage staff and resources, and establish innovative and enduring systems that both support existing areas of work and strategically support expansion into new areas of work. The ideal candidate will be recognized nationally for his or her expertise and will credibly represent the organization to its broad range of clients (e.g., teachers, local and state education associations, representatives from other national organizations, representatives of the Federal Government).
It is essential that the Deputy Program Director occupy a position as a thought leader in generating practical and innovative solutions for persistent educational issues facing educators, school leaders, state- and national-level administrators, and the broader research community. To this end, the ideal candidate will bring insight into how current trends in education and assessment (e.g., technology-enhanced assessments and reporting systems, next generation accountability systems, formative data use) may impact the field and will come prepared to develop strategic plans for positioning ASDS as a thought leader for change.
Working with ASDS’s Senior Program Director, the Deputy Program Director, Research and Innovation, is responsible for providing effective intellectual leadership, business strategy, and management oversight across the program. This includes providing substantive management support and professional development to key staff, leading proposal efforts in response to RFPs or grant opportunities, and leading an initiative for identifying, developing, and successfully building new strands of research, innovation, service, and product development.
In addition, the Deputy Director of Research and Innovation will be expected to:
- Develop strategies for capitalizing on available and emerging technologies to both support the work of ASDS and propel the development of new work;
- Identify and build advantageous partnerships and collaborations, particularly within the education technology space, with the potential to strengthen existing work and support entry into new strands of work;
- Keep current on research in the areas of policy, measurement, and accountability, monitor trends within the education landscape, and provide regular internal updates to ASDS/WestEd staff;
- Help lead the research and outreach efforts across the Program and within WestEd;
- Work with state education agencies and other partners/clients in the transition to and implementation of the Common Core State Standards and next generation standards (e.g., Next Generation Science Standards) and aligned balanced assessment systems, with particular consideration of implications for diverse learners (e.g., English language learners [ELLs], students with disabilities [SWDs], and gifted/talented students);
- Lead resource development efforts, including establishing strategic partnerships and engaging in successful proposal writing, that result in sustained diversified support for self and staff; and
- Supervise a team of up to 15 employees.
- Ph.D. highly desirable, advanced degree required
- Proven track record of effectively managing and/or building a strong team employing multiple senior and junior level staff and administering programs in a collaborative but competitive environment that fully utilizes organizational and staff capacity
- Deep content knowledge and expertise in many of the following areas:
- Common Core State Standards
- Standards and assessment development and implementation
- Test validation
- Educational measurement
- Accountability systems that include teacher-school-, state-components
- Learning and assessment needs of diverse student populations, including ELLS,SWDs, and academically gifted students
- Current trends in technology
- College and career readiness
- Research methodologies and design, including quantitative and qualitative applications
- Program evaluation
- Demonstrated success in leading resource development efforts and writing successful proposals to government agencies, foundations, and/or other funding sources
- Demonstrated track record of developing or expanding programs or a targeted portfolio of work that resulted in increased staffing, budgets, and/or program scope in an education or education-technology related field
- Excellent communication skills, including the ability to engage with, inspire, and motivate a large and diverse team
The salary for the Deputy Program Director position is highly competitive and commensurate with experience. Notably, WestEd has been recognized consistently among the Best Places to Work in the Bay Area. Our agency provides a generous, competitive benefit package, including health insurance, employee leave, and retirement contributions.
San Francisco, CA
The review of candidate applications will begin immediately. They must be submitted electronically and should include a cover letter and resume. Applications or inquiries about the position and/or the search process should be directed to the executive recruitment team managing this search:
Monisha Lozier, Partner & Leslie Nair, Associate Partner
Bellwether Education Partners