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About Children First
Children First, formerly Public Citizens for Children and Youth (PCCY), is a dynamic child advocacy organization focused on improving the lives of children by building support and momentum to improve local, state and/or federal policies that can promote racial and economic equity for children as they grow up in southeastern Pennsylvania. Our small staff is a group of highly motivated individuals who are passionate about improving the lives of children and youth. Through bipartisan advocacy, we have a record of winning scale level changes that do just that. To be successful at Children First you must enjoy collaborating and helping coworkers do their best and contribute to a respectful workplace that values a commitment to racial diversity, having fun, and making an impact.

 

Children First currently has the following (4) positions open:

K-12 Education Policy Director

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Position Summary

Children First plays a leadership role in setting and advancing local and state policy priorities that improve the quality of education available to students attending public schools, particularly within the lowest wealth school districts in the state; these school districts educate a majority of the state’s Black, Hispanic and low-income students who benefit from our advocacy. To advance our priorities, Children First builds new narratives for education reform, sets a strategy to put those reforms in place, and strategically engages leaders, residents, and youth to advocate for reforms. Our work is built on the premise that we must improve racial equity as we reform public schools and that to do so requires building bi-partisan support for reforms among the lawmakers in southeastern Pennsylvania in ways that enable lawmakers in other regions of the state to support these efforts.  We have a forty-year track record of success and a highly effective staff to which we are eager to add a highly motivated, experienced professional with advanced policy development and advocacy skills to lead our Education Team.

Key Duties:

  • Lead the development and implementation of advocacy strategies to advance state and local level K-12 policy priorities
  • Craft compelling messaging documents including reports, briefs, commentaries, and fact sheets and regularly make public speeches/presentations to increase the public discourse to support the policy reforms
  • Draft and present testimony to legislative bodies on key k12 policy issues including privatization, school finance/funding, racial equity, and teacher quality,
  • Recruit and inform community leaders, parents and youth and engage them to build support for our policy priorities among local, state, and federal lawmakers and appointed officials
  • Create, expand, and lead broad-based coalitions focused on K-12 policy goals
  • Develop and maintain relationships with local school leaders that engage them in efforts to influence state elected officials and other key decision-makers throughout the region.
  • Generate ideas for innovative initiatives or projects that build public support for our k-12 policy priorities.
  • Community organizing experience preferred

Position Description:

  • Regularly hold effective meetings with key policymakers regarding K-12 priorities
  • Monitor trends and collect and analyze data on K-12 policy in order to identify unmet needs and persistent challenges, and establish priority issues
  • Create and implement strategies to maintain engagement of new and existing partners in Children First’s advocacy efforts
  • Oversee and write research and reports, issue briefs and other publications on K-12 issues; this work involves data review, analysis, and presentation of data
  • Create and execute plans for report dissemination and popularizing report findings on social media and news platforms
  • Work in partnership with the Development Team to craft proposals and reports that increase the resources supporting our education policy/advocacy efforts
  • Supervise county-based outreach staff in their work on K-12 issues
  • Recruit and supervise interns who assist with K-12 research and outreach

Qualifications, Education, Experience & Skills:

  • Knowledge of major PA state K-12 policy issues including school finance, governance models, racial equity, school board politics and teaching and learning
  • Experience understanding and advancing legislative goals
  • Advanced skills leading coalitions and implementing processes needed to support effective relationships and operations with coalitions
  • Familiarity with local and state news sources and experience/ability creating relationships with reporters
  • Ability to organize, mobilize and facilitate widespread community participation and engagement at rallies and other events
  • Proficiency in data analysis associated with school finance, demographic analysis and related data-related research
  • Track record of effective collaboration and work with organizational leaders such as superintendents, school board members, non-profit executives, and business owners
  • Advanced written and oral communication skills
  • At least three years management experience with supervisory responsibilities
  • Experience using social media tools to boost advocacy impact
  • Strong desire to lead the K-12 team with a spirit of collaboration and empowering your team to help achieve team goals

Other Duties as Assigned

  • Educate communities about important K-12 policies and initiatives
  • Attend and present information at Children First board and board subcommittee meetings as requested
  • Plan, orchestrate and assist with outreach events which occur in the evening and/or weekends
  • Attend and participate in staff meetings and staff committees
  • Actively support Children First fundraising efforts

Important Skills:

  • Ability to work independently and with others
  • Works well under pressure
  • Detail oriented
  • Ability to prioritize and manage multiple projects
  • Ability to collect, interpret and simplify large datasets
  • Very strong written and oral communication skills
  • Ability to travel to communities across the region – must have driver’s license and access to a reliable vehicle
  • Proficient in excel, word, google and social media platforms

Reports To: Executive Director

Salary: $115,000 plus benefits, including health care for you and your child(ren) and generous paid time off.

Apply: Resume and cover letter to info@childrenfirstpa.org.


Justice in Education Youth Leadership Program Coordinator

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Position Summary

We are seeking an outgoing and highly organized individual to join the K-12 team to engage high school youth enabling them to make the case for improving public education in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.  The Justice in Education Youth Leadership Coordinator will be supervised by the K-12 Policy Director and work closely with our County Coordinators to grow the base of education stakeholders throughout the region who support our public education funding campaign and educational equity initiatives.

Key Duties:

  • Serve as the primary liaison with organizations that engage youth across the region including school-based and community-based organizations.
  • Work with these organizations to identify ways to insert public education advocacy training content into their youth activities.
  • Build personal relationships with the youth who want to be highly engaged and support efforts created by the K-12 team that give them pathways to engagement.
  • Arrange for Children First and other experts to provide the training at time slots provided by the partner organizations.
  • Schedule legislative/community organization meetings for the youth who choose to become advocacy leaders.
  • Work with the K-12 team to create presentations/materials for training & related activities.
  • Increase visibility of our work by engaging youth on social media that give voice to their experiences and hopes for public education.
  • Maintain records with contact information for partner organizations and youth interested in the Justice In Education program.
  • Assist in organizing K-12 policy-related events, such as rallies, press conferences, advocacy trainings, forums, report launch events, etc.

Other Duties as assigned by the K-12 Education Policy Director or K-12 County Coordinators:

  • Stay abreast of the work of local and state partners/allies and national organizations involved in policy and advocacy in the K-12 area of work
  • Assist when asked in Children First outreach events which may be during evening or weekend hours
  • Attend and participate in staff and committee meetings and special events
  • Attend all in person meetings of the statewide campaigns (typically three times a year in Harrisburg).

Qualifications, Education, Experience & Skills:

  • A passion for working with youth and for building relationships with youth serving leaders.
  • Experience working on a team as an advocate with a positive history of impact.
  • Highly organized, able to multi-task and manage multiple projects
  • Strong verbal communication skills, positive and clear written communication skills.
  • Ability to use Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Google Docs.
  • Active social media presence on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Important additional skills:

  • Comfort with making cold calls to engage new stakeholders
  • Ability to work independently and with others
  • Ability to learn new skills to support new initiatives
  • Works well under pressure
  • Detail oriented
  • Ability to prioritize and manage multiple projects
  • Very strong written and oral communication skills
  • Ability to travel to communities across the region

Reports To: K12 Education Policy Director

Salary range: $50,000-$60,000 depending on experience, full benefits provided.

Apply: Resume and cover letter to info@childrenfirst.org.


Assistant to the Philadelphia Mobilization and Policy Director

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Position Summary

We are seeking an outgoing individual to assist the Philadelphia Mobilization Policy Director and Philadelphia community groups to support agency initiatives: the Mayoral Campaign, Philadelphia Advocacy, and the Greater Philadelphia Extracurricular Collaborative, a local coalition of out-of-school time (OST) providers. The associate will provide operational support to additional policy staff at Children First to facilitate their participation in local advocacy, policy, and programmatic initiatives.

Key Duties

  • Support the day-to-day management of Children First’s work on the 2023 Philadelphia Mayoral Campaign, advocacy at the School District and with City Council, and GPEC (the Greater Philadelphia Extracurricular Collaborative). This includes preparing and distributing meeting agendas, taking minutes, and coordinating any follow-up meetings.
  • Support the Philadelphia Mobilization and Policy Director and other Children First staff in managing communications with City Council, the Mayoral administration, and the School District by organizing advocacy materials and scheduling meetings.
  • Support the coordination of events like neighborhood forums, information sessions, and candidate debates.
  • Support outreach efforts like tabling, attending meetings, presenting about the coalitions and campaigns, etc.
  • Work with the Children First team to recruit, orient, and coordinate participants to provide testimony when needed.
  • Assist with the recruitment and on-boarding of new coalition members. This will include drafting and distributing announcements, scheduling meetings, organizing application materials.
  • Prepare communications to coalition members and supporting organizations to disseminate toolkits, information on upcoming events, and other news.
  • To the extent possible, attend local events, some nights and weekends included, organized to support candidate engagement and/or inform coalition members of these events so they can be present.
  • Provide administrative and data entry support for activities such maintaining lists of stakeholders for multiple projects.
  • Editing and formatting documents related to projects as needed.

Qualifications, Education, Experience & Skills:

  • A passion for supporting the engagement of child serving organizations, advocacy groups and other local community organizations to garner support for children’s issues.
  • Experience working on a team as an advocate with a positive history of impact.
  • Highly organized, able to multi-task and manage multiple projects.
  • Strong verbal communication skills, positive and clear written communication skills.
  • Knowledge of the key policy challenges in the education sector preferred.
  • Ability to use Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Google Docs.
  • Active social media presence on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Important additional skills:

  • Ability to work independently and with others learning new skills to support initiatives.
  • Works well under pressure.
  • Detail oriented.
  • Ability to prioritize and manage multiple projects.
  • Ability to collect, interpret and simplify large datasets.
  • Very strong written and oral communication skills.
  • Ability to travel to communities across the region.

Reports to: Philadelphia Mobilization and Policy Director

Salary: This is a 6-month, full-time position. The salary is $22,000.

Apply: Resume and cover letter to info@childrenfirst.org.


K-12 Field Associate

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Position Summary

We are seeking an outgoing individual to join the K-12 team to provide operational support for its advocacy, policy, and programmatic initiatives. The Special Projects Coordinator will work closely with the K-12 Policy Director and County Coordinators to grow the base of education stakeholders throughout the region and support the work of the education funding campaign, equity initiatives and parent and youth centered advocacy programming.

Key Duties:

  • Manage the day-to-day operations for special projects on K-12 initiatives
  • Schedule legislative/community organization meetings on K-12 priorities
  • Assist in organizing K-12 policy-related events, such as rallies, press conferences, advocacy trainings, forums, report launch events, etc.
  • Build our list of supporters and supporting organizations by attending local events, pre-organized meetings, and mobilizing others to attend within school district boundaries
  • Grow and update the active database of education stakeholders throughout the region
  • Increase visibility of our work by documenting support and field activities via social media

Description:

  • Provide communications support for potential and current participants in student-focused advocacy projects (i.e. Justice in Education, securing student participants for events)
  • Conduct outreach to elected officials, community partners, stakeholders, etc. regarding K-12 policies and initiatives
  • Work with the K-12 team to create presentations and materials for outreach
  • Maintain data entry of supporters into the K-12 spreadsheets and Every Action lists by school districts, counties, and key sectors
  • Represent Children First at community and coalition meetings/events
  • Track progress of grant deliverables
  • Assist with K-12 report research
  • Track outreach, local media coverage, and populate shared campaign calendar with field events
  • Participate and take notes in state-wide campaign, mobilization, or other K-12 calls
  • Work with K-12 education policy interns/fellows and volunteers to further K-12 policies and initiatives

Other Duties as assigned by the K-12 Education Policy Director or K-12 County Coordinators:

  • Stay abreast of the work of local and state partners/allies and national organizations involved in policy and advocacy in the K-12 area of work
  • Assist when asked in Children First outreach events which may be during evening or weekend hours
  • Attend and participate in staff and committee meetings and special events
  • Attend all in person meetings of the statewide campaigns (typically three times a year in Harrisburg).

Qualifications, Education, Experience & Skills:

  • A passion for supporting the engagement of education stakeholders, including school administrators and students to garner support for more resources and funding for education.
  • Experience working on a team as an advocate with a positive history of impact.
  • Highly organized, able to multi-task and manage multiple projects
  • Strong verbal communication skills, positive and clear written communication skills.
  • Knowledge of the key policy challenges in the education sector preferred.
  • Ability to use Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Google Docs.
  • Active social media presence on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Important additional skills:

  • Ability to work independently and with others and learning new skills to support initiatives
  • Works well under pressure
  • Detail oriented
  • Ability to prioritize and manage multiple projects
  • Ability to collect, interpret and simplify large datasets
  • Very strong written and oral communication skills
  • Ability to travel to communities across the region

Reports To: K12 Education Policy Director

Salary: $45,000 plus benefits and generous paid time off.

Apply: Resume and cover letter to info@childrenfirst.org.


Internships

Children First interns gain knowledge and experience in child advocacy and public policy. Interns participate in all aspects of our work including attending rallies, conducting research on children’s issues and creating materials to support our  mission of providing better lives and life chances for children in southeastern Pennsylvania.  At this time, we are only able to offer unpaid internships that are needed as part of college course requirements.  For more information, contact: info at childrenfirstpa.org

Children First is an inclusive, equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate in hiring.