Program Specialist, New England



New Bedford, MA, USA
Posted on Saturday, November 18, 2023

ABOUT THE POSITION, as a Program Specialist you will help demonstrate the power of Playworks in new communities throughout New England by providing single or multi-day trainings, on-site service delivery, spreading awareness of Playworks through school recruitment and outreach, and providing support for programming across New England. This is an office-based position, however, time is split between various program, training and school recruitment activities. This position will be primarily based in Southeastern MA (New Bedford), but may require frequent travel throughout New England.

Specifically, you will:

External Playworks Trainings (50%)

  • Become a certified trainer to aid in the delivery of all Playworks Pro services, includes travel throughout the region delivering Playworks training.
  • Implement and facilitate various trainings throughout Southeastern MA and Rhode Island.
  • Provide trainings and consultation to teachers, school staff and admin, youth workers and clients outside of the youth development sphere within the areas of play, youth development, recess design, physical activity, group management, conflict resolution, youth leadership and program sustainability.
  • Develop and maintain relationships with clients pre and post trainings, including visits to schools to provide recess observations, consultation, and collaborative action planning with school recess teams.
  • Build strong relationships with key strategic partners to generate opportunities for future trainings, working closely with Regional Partnerships Manager and Associate Program Director to vet and approach partners for continued relationships.
  • Contribute to the development and continued quality improvement of Playworks curriculum, including developing training content and techniques.
  • Support the creation of written materials and tools such as training packets, posters, conference programs, promotional materials and other educational and marketing materials.
  • Provide feedback and support to other Playworks staff delivering trainings.
  • Work in partnership with the Regional Partnership Manager on Playworks programming and consultation services, including planning, scheduling, designing, facilitating, and implementing evaluation and program quality resources.
  • Build strong relationships with national and regional Playworks' stakeholders to increase impact nationally/regionally and provide high quality customer service to training clients.

School-Based Program Implementation (50%)

  • Plan and implement a consultative play-based program (TeamUp) at 1-3 public elementary schools in New Bedford.
  • Maintain communication between Playworks staff, school staff, teachers, and volunteers.
  • Collect and maintain paperwork including organizing daily, weekly, monthly schedules, meeting agendas, notes and data.
  • Plan and implement the learning units and recess staff trainings for program components.
  • Support regional team and national program department with development of programmatic learning and management resources.
  • Deliver onsite coaching, consultation, and modeling to school personnel through the implementation of the following components.
    • Recess - with School Personnel create and coach recess staff to develop a safe and inclusive playground and be a significant presence on the playground by organizing and playing large games with 20+ students as well as role modeling positive behavior.
    • Student leadership program – with School Personnel organize a “Junior Coach” student leadership program by facilitating trainings as well as coaching recess staff to supervise and manage Junior Coaches during recess.
    • Instructional classes - lead instructional classes with elementary grade levels students and their teacher in skills building, cooperative games, and activities to increase awareness of rules, boundaries, skills utilized and cultural expectations at recess.

If you're a good fit for this position, you already know most of what this job entails. However, to be sure we're providing a complete picture, here are some details:

  • Success in this position will require the ability to make connections and sustain multiple relationships while multi-tasking other important projects.
  • The strongest candidate will be a confident facilitator with the ability to take on many roles and advocate for Playworks with partners.
  • A want and desire to grow Playworks programming throughout New England.
  • You will be successful if you can own projects, drive initiatives, and be a communicative team player.

Required Skills & Experience:

  • Demonstrated experience leading groups of children of all sizes with the ability to engage and inspire youth.
  • Proven ability to train adult participants including helping with change management, connecting strategies to outcomes and being able to speak on a micro and macro scales.
  • Motivated self-starter with clear and open communication skills.
  • Humorous and playful with ability to set clear goals and follow through with flexible and creative problem solving tools.
  • Conceptual ability for the larger perspective with a strong attention to detail and multitasking.
  • Experience interacting with diverse communities and the ability to integrate into an existing school community.
  • Knowledge of computer and internet based programs for use in communication and grant requirements.
  • Strong interpersonal communication skills, both oral and written.
  • Ability to manage assorted tasks with a focus on enhancing the experience for youth during the school day.
  • Must have access to reliable transportation to travel locally - this position will require travel to various regional locations.

Compensation & Benefits:

Playworks offers the full package - great benefits, a fun place to work and an opportunity to grow professionally. We offer:

  • This is a full-time exempt position that reports to a Regional Partnership Manager. This position will be based in our New England office with frequent travel.
  • At Playworks, our starting salary takes into consideration internal pay equity, geographic pay differential and robust external market data. We highly value transparency and equity within compensation and therefore are committed to adhering to established compensation pay points. The starting salary for this position is $58,000.
  • A comprehensive benefits package, including medical, dental, vision, disability, 401(k) with employer match, life insurance, employee funded pre-tax health and child care spending accounts.
  • Generous paid time off with paid vacation, sick and holiday leave.

This is a hands-on, creative, playful and fun-loving place to work, all while contributing to the success of our nation’s youth. So if you're ready to immerse yourself in the education sector, working on a rewarding set of challenges and if you've got the skills, experience, passion, and a team spirit, apply!

Please include:

  • A cover letter describing your interest in Playworks and how your experience has prepared you for this role.
  • Resume.
  • If we think you’re the right fit, we’ll request your references; there’s no need to include them at the outset.

ABOUT PLAYWORKS, at Playworks we believe in the power of play to bring out the best in every kid. We are changing the school climate by leveraging the power of safe, fun, and healthy play at school every day. We create a place for every kid on the playground to feel included, be active, and build valuable social and emotional skills by partnering with schools, districts, and after-school programs through services including digital engagement, on-site coaches, professional training for school staff who support play, and consultative partnerships.

We are committed to racial equity, and we make a particular effort to recruit people of color, indigenous people, gender non-binary people, and people with historically more marginalized identities to apply for open positions. Our core values of cultivating play, center equity, continued learning and collaboration within communities are the foundation of our organization and are infused in all aspects of our work.

Studies have shown that women and people of color are less likely to apply for jobs unless they believe they meet every one of the qualifications as described in a job description. We are most interested in finding the best candidate for the job, and that candidate may be one who comes from a less traditional background. If that is you, don’t hesitate to apply and tell us about yourself!

As an equal opportunity program, Playworks encourages applications from all individuals regardless of age, gender, gender identity/expression, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion, faith, marital status, physical ability, or any other legally protected basis. Playworks evaluates all candidates for employment, volunteering opportunities or board service on a merit basis.