Senior Associate, Education Policy Communications

Children Now is a nonpartisan whole-child umbrella research, policy development, and advocacy organization dedicated to promoting children’s health, education, and well-being in California. Children Now also leads The Children’s Movement of California, a unique network of more than 4600 parent, youth, business, labor, civil rights, faith, and community-based organizations, as well as thousands of individuals, working together to make children a top priority in public policy. Learn more at www.childrennow.org including about Children Now’s core organizational values.

About the Role

We are seeking a highly skilled and motivated professional to manage communications strategy and create written products for Children Now’s education policy and advocacy efforts. The Senior Associate will develop and edit a wide range of communications including online content, engagement campaigns, news releases, blog posts, social media content, factsheets, research materials, funder reports, policy briefs, and other relevant materials, including outreach to The Children’s Movement. This position will work closely with Children Now’s communications, policy, and research teams to educate and explain complex policy ideas and data for a variety of audiences, including policymakers, media, advocacy partners, the general public, individuals, corporate and foundation funders, other stakeholders, and organizations. This position will support Children Now’s development and fundraising efforts through grant writing (including proposals and reports), and project managing all development deadlines for the education team The Senior Associate will also support education policy efforts more broadly and assist other policy teams’ organizational-wide communications goals.

This full-time position will be based in either our Oakland or Sacramento office, and reporting to the Director, Education. Some travel and in-person meetings between Children Now’s offices and regional meetings throughout the state and outside of California will be required.

Ideal Candidates

Candidates should be excellent writers and communicators and have experience with education issues affecting youth, Transitional Kindergarten (TK) to post-secondary. Applicants should be personable, self-motivated, highly organized and detail-oriented. The ideal applicant will exercise good judgment in a variety of situations and is flexible, collaborative, and solutions-oriented. This position is ideal for an experienced communicator with a powerful work ethic, excellent project management skills, who thinks strategically, takes initiative, collaborates effectively, and has a deep commitment to racial equity and has a firm belief in Children Now’s mission to improve the health, education, and well-being of all children.

Primary Responsibilities

  • Develop and implement a comprehensive communications strategy to advance Children Now’s comprehensive education policy agenda;
  • Work with policy, communications, and development teams, develop and write grant proposals and reports, policy briefs, factsheets, reports and presentations; and a range of other communications materials designed to effectively convey the organization’s accomplishments, mission, strategy, and commitment to racial equity and to elevate the importance of education issues in California;
  • Manage social media content development for education policy, and support Children Now’s overall social media presence and campaigns with a strong emphasis on racial equity as we advance our mission;
  • In collaboration with the research team, conduct data-gathering and analysis towards the development of informative and persuasive narratives;
  • Establish collaborative relationships with media by responding to media queries, creating news releases, providing referrals to internal policy experts, and pitching story ideas;
  • Exercise sound judgment when developing communications recommendations and always ensure the credibility and reputation of Children Now when collaborating with stakeholders, members of the media, and the public;
  • Build and support coalition development via The Children’s Movement and other efforts and convene coalition partners as needed;
  • Provide content support to other teams across the organization, including other policy areas (such as early childhood), research, communications, and The Children’s Movement of California;
  • Conduct email, phone and in-person engagement efforts for specific informational or advocacy campaigns at the state, regional and local levels, including fast paced, quick-turn-around campaigns related to specific policy opportunities, particularly changes or actions in the political arena; and
  • Support marketing, communications, and operations functions and perform other duties, as required.

Qualifications

  • A minimum of 5 years policy-related communications, journalism or other relevant writing experience;
  • Demonstrated exceptional verbal and written communication skill, as well as effective public speaking capability;
  • Excellent research, analysis and editing capabilities;
  • Demonstrated excellent project management skills with highly organized processes and detail orientation;
  • Skill at working collaboratively and incorporating feedback and written input from others;
  • Excellent relationship-building skills with the ability to manage effective working relationships with diverse and multicultural constituencies, including colleagues, the media, policymakers, partners and others;
  • Highly flexible with a willingness to take on a range of writing assignments;
  • Bachelor’s degree required; advanced degree in communications, journalism or related field preferred;
  • Expert knowledge of MS Office with strong word processing, Excel, database, and internet research skills; and
  • Substantive knowledge of education policy in California preferred.

Compensation

Salary range is competitive and commensurate with experience. Generous benefits.

Application Process

Please complete the online application form. All applicants must attach the following as part of their online application: 1) cover letter, 2) resume, 3) two-to-three-page writing sample, and 4) three to five references (including former supervisors). Please submit attachments in PDF or Microsoft Word format only.

We do not accept phone inquiries regarding the position; please do not call. Position open until filled.

Children Now COVID-19 Vaccination Policy
The health and safety of our employees is our number one priority. Thus, Children Now has implemented a COVID-19 vaccination policy covering all employees. To be compliant with this policy, all new staff members shall be required to provide proof of their vaccine status at the start of their employment, unless a reasonable accommodation is requested and approved.

Children Now is an equal opportunity employer and is committed to staff diversity, equity, and inclusion. Children Now values diversity as an asset essential to accomplishing our work and views diversity as including differences in race, national origin, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and/or expression, disability, veteran status, job skills, education, and geographic location and any other category protected by law. We encourage all qualified candidates to apply.