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Director of Public Relations

Boston Public Schools seeks a Director of Public Relations

REPORTS TO: Chief Engagement Officer

 

OVERVIEW:

Founded in 1647, Boston Public Schools (BPS) is the oldest public school district in the country. With approximately 57,000 students from over 114 different countries, and nearly 9,000 employees (including 4,800 teachers), BPS is the largest school district in Massachusetts and one of the most diverse.

 

BPS seeks an experienced individual to serve as the Director of Public Relations leading the development and implementation of the District's community outreach and proactive communication plan. The Director will primarily develop public relations and communications campaigns to build broad internal and community awareness and understanding of district initiatives, their potential impact on students and families, and clarity around timelines and the areas for public input.

 

S/he will develop and maintain multimedia communication tools, manage production/logistics, create compelling and up-to-date content for distribution via the BPS website, videos, newsletters, social media and other media platforms. The position will design strategies for reaching hard to reach populations by partnering with organizations and media outlets serving specific linguistic, racial, cultural and low SES populations. The individual will partner with the Chief of Engagement and OOE Director of Community Engagement to create family and community friendly powerpoints and prezis, reports and fact sheets. In addition, the Director will work in collaboration with the Director of Media Relations and the Communications Department in the Office of the Superintendent to cultivate a positive public narrative in a proactive manner to convey to the Boston community the unique and varied success stories emanating out of the Boston Public Schools on a daily basis.

 

RESPONSIBILITIES:

  1. Develop and execute strategic communications plans to maximize impact with target audiences as it relates to the District's key strategic priorities, including, but not limited to BuildBPS, community engagement efforts and student registration and assignment; and increase stakeholder awareness knowledge and understanding of district initiatives
  2. Play a lead role in writing and editing written material in all aspects of the District's public relations efforts
  3. Develop and execute the public relations, advocacy and communications strategy for the District, including writing/editing public-facing materials such as op-eds fact sheets, talking points, event briefings, meeting summaries, press releases, and media advisories
  4. Propose, project manage and collaborate with the OoE Administrative Assistant to organize site visits, panel discussions, and other cultivation and engagement events
  5. Capture relevant stories and artifacts in real-time and via conversations to create turn-key communication tools
  6. Direct the management of online public relation activities, including updates to and maintenance of the website, and development of innovative data visualizations such as infographics; oversee execution of regular communications
  7. Assist in drafting talking points and guidance for speeches, presentations, media inquiries, and publications;
  8. Evaluate results and impact of public relations activities; report on developments, trends and attitudes regarding BPS key initiatives and reforms
  9. Manage creative campaigns to lay the groundwork for effective public relations
  10. Create, update and maintain coordinated editorial and production calendars that maximize the District's work with stakeholders
  11. Work with BPS Translations Manager to ensure the creation high quality, translated materials accessible to diverse and non-English speaking stakeholders
  12. Collaborate and attend meetings with the various units of the District to learn content, set common goals and plan outreach activities accordingly
  13. Ensure our District's public relations and communications efforts, such as branding and messaging, are complementary, comprehensive and aligned.
  14. Work collaboratively throughout BPS central offices and schools to ensure accurate information and the successful distribution of materials
  15. Support senior BPS officials at major public-facing events
  16. Perform other related duties as requested by the Chief Engagement Officer

QUALIFICATIONS-REQUIRED:

  • Bachelor's Degree
  • 5+ years professional experience, functioning successfully as a communications strategist in a politically charged environment, preferably in public education or with a large, complex public organization.
  • Demonstrate success working on issue-based communications and/or policy advocacy through messaging, positioning, media and communications strategy, journalism, branding and constituent engagement.
  • Demonstrate focused, flexible, creative and systemic capabilities in work and leadership style.
  • Experience in the education, social service, or non-profit sector
  • Strategic thinker that backwards-maps from outcomes
  • Outstanding analytical, interpersonal and written and oral communication skills in positions requiring communication with a broad and diverse audience.
  • Demonstrated ability to achieve sustainable results in a complex, dynamic and results-oriented organization where ability to work and project manage cross-functionally is critical
  • Entrepreneurial and creative spirit that can thrive in a bureaucratic environment
  • Highly proficient at establishing strong partnerships across organizations and developing powerful messages for different constituencies including parents, students, staff and community members; and a track record of developing strategies to effectively reach marginalized populations
  • Natural sense of effective design principles
  • High standard of quality and attention to detail
  • Ability to become conversant quickly in BPS and OOE's work, a hunger to deeply understand our work, and the skills to communicate with experts;
  • Experience with and competency for software such as Illustrator, Powerpoint, and other design oriented technology
  • Knowledge of and experience with data base systems
  • Demonstrated cultural proficiency and awareness
  • Ability to work well independently and as part of a team
  • This position is subject to the City of Boston residency ordinance.
  • Fiscal accountability and budget management experience.

QUALIFICATIONS-PREFERRED:

  • Master's Degree
  • Bilingual or multilingual with an emphasis on Spanish, Chinese, Haitian Creole, Cape Verdean or Somali
  • Familiarity with html and WordPress, and video editing and production

TERMS: Managerial, 12 months, Tier D. This position subject to the City of Boston residency requirement. Additionally, this position requires flexibility that includes working some evenings and weekends

Please refer to www.bostonpublicschools.org/ohc (under "Employee Benefits and Policies") for more information on salary and compensation. Salaries are listed by Unions and Grade/Step.

 

NOTE: School-based managerial employees will work 223 days between July 1st and June 30th each year. The 223 day work-year will include the 180 days in which school is in session, and the additional days will be determined by the employee and the principal or headmaster of the school. This position subject to the City of Boston residency requirement.

School-based managerial employees are not eligible for vacation time or compensatory time. In the event of school cancellation due to snow or inclement weather, school-based managerial employees need not report to work.

 

The Boston Public Schools, in accordance with its nondiscrimination policies, does not discriminate in its programs, facilities, or employment or educational opportunities on the basis of race, color, age, criminal record (inquiries only), disability, homelessness, sex/gender, gender identity, religion, national origin, ancestry, sexual orientation, genetics or military status, and does not tolerate any form of retaliation, or bias-based intimidation, threat or harassment that demeans individuals' dignity or interferes with their ability to learn or work.