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An Invitation to Apply for the Position of Vice President of Research
Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL)
The Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL), a nonprofit organization based in Chicago, is dedicated to advancing the science and practice of social and emotional learning (SEL). CASEL's mission is to help make evidence-based social and emotional learning (SEL) an integral part of preschool through high school education across the country. We believe that systemic educational efforts that promote students' social and emotional competence are a key ingredient that will enable all young people in our diverse society to lead healthier, happier, more productive, and fulfilling lives.
With committed and growing philanthropic funding and a cohesive strategic plan, CASEL is endeavoring to:
Support the implementation and document the impact of systemic SEL in large school districts
and socio-demographically diverse school districts across this nation.
Capture, refine, and test the learnings to advance the research base for the process of
implementing systemic SEL and share that knowledge broadly.
Identify and evaluate interventions and assessment tools to accelerate high-quality
implementation of SEL nationwide.
Partner with SEL program providers, colleges of education, professional organizations, school
districts, and researchers to support scaling of SEL.
Promote federal and state policies that encourage academic, social, and emotional learning.
Strategically communicate to foster widespread demand for SEL as an essential part of students'
education at the classroom, school, district, state, and national level.
CASEL is overseen by a distinguished 11-member Board of Directors. They include Timothy P. Shriver (Chair), Ann S. Nerad ( Vice Chair), Larry Aber, Stephen D. Arnold, Catherine Bradshaw, Linda DarlingHammond, Deborah Delisle, Paul Goren, Kim Schonert-Reichl, Andrea Wishom, and Roger P. Weissberg (Vice Chair). This search will fill one of the most pivotal top-level positions: the Vice President (VP) of Research. The VP of Research will ensure CASEL operates with the appropriate and efficient infrastructure, policies, and practices that will be important to fulfilling CASEL's goal of making evidence-based SEL an integral part of children's educational experience.
The VP of Research is a senior position and will serve as a member of CASEL's Executive Team. The VP of Research reports to CASEL's President and CEO (Karen Niemi) and works closely with CASEL's Chief Knowledge Officer (Roger Weissberg). Part of CASEL's expansion involves establishing a strong research unit in Chicago where research staff members collaborate effectively with practice, development, communications, and operations staff on CASEL's efforts to establish preschool to high school SEL in schools across the United States. The VP of Research will oversee all research, evaluation, translational science, and continuous improvement activities aimed at enhancing and expanding the evidence base for SEL.
The ideal candidate for the VP of Research position will have extensive experience conducting qualitative and quantitative action research and evaluation in the PreK-12 education or youth development sectors. S/he will be broadly knowledgeable about SEL and/or related forms of developmentally appropriate educational practice. S/he will be a gifted leader, collaborator, communicator, and writer—one who thinks strategically, inspires others to their best efforts, and has a successful track record for securing grant funding. This is a rare opportunity for an entrepreneurial and collaborative individual to help CASEL realize its goal of promoting systemic SEL implementation in school districts across the country.
The VP of Research will help CASEL to: (1) analyze and promote high-quality research on the practice and effects of SEL; (2) serve as a leading source for information on SEL science, practice, and policy; (3) establish demonstrations of systemic, high-quality SEL in school districts across the nation; and (4) establish the cross-field and cross-discipline collaborations necessary to strengthen and grow the field of SEL.
Opportunities and Expectations for the Vice President of Research
The VP of Research will collaborate closely with the Executive Team and research staff, and have primary responsibility to lead efforts across the following areas:
Research Agenda for National Implementation of SEL in School Districts Across the U.S.
Dissemination of Research Findings
Build Research Capacity through Grant Writing
Collaborate with External Partners to Ensure Alignment & Build Capacity in the Field of SEL
QUALIFICATIONS AND EXPERIENCE
Although no one candidate will embody all of the desired qualities, the successful candidate will bring many of the following qualifications and personal attributes:
The background and educational experience required for this position are:
Doctorate in a relevant field (education, public policy, psychology, human development,
prevention science, sociology), preferably with a focus on PreK-12 education or youth
Ten or more years of experience conducting quantitative and qualitative research studies and
evaluation, with a focus on PreK-12 education or youth development.
Experience collaborating with senior leaders of large school districts and working with educators to
develop and implement evaluation and tracking systems/
Experience working to translate research findings into easy to understand, usable tools and
materials for practice and nonprofessional audiences (e.g., developing consumers' guides,
content for high-quality videos, online professional development courses, webinars, papers,
Demonstrated track record of securing federal and foundation grants, publishing academic
articles, and developing products for wider distribution.
Experience leading a high-functioning team of staff members, including successfully building,
managing, and developing staff.
Excellent interpersonal, communications and writing skills, including the ability to connect in
culturally competent ways with local stakeholders from a wide variety of backgrounds.
Passion for social and emotional learning and for CASEL's mission.
Intellectual curiosity and a commitment to continuously improving evidence-based educational
A talent for recruiting, developing, and inspiring staff and a commitment to the professional
growth of staff.
Strongly collaborative, someone who enjoys being a part of a collaborative team.
Cultural competence and enjoyment working with people from diverse backgrounds.
Commitment to improving public education and providing low-income students from diverse
backgrounds with excellent educational opportunities.
Excellent strategic thinking and problem-solving skills, as well as advanced skills in managing and
executing multiple projects according to organizational priorities.
Integrity, resilience, and stamina; grace in dealing with a broad spectrum of personalities; good
humor in leading the day-to-day work of the organization.
Please email a thoughtful cover letter and resume outlining how your skills and experience meet the qualifications of the position and stating how you heard about this opportunity to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include the position title in the subject line of your email message. We regret that we will not be able to respond to phone inquiries about this position.
The Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning is an equal opportunity employer. CASEL
evaluates applicants for employment on the basis of qualifications, merit, and work-related criteria
without regard to race, color, religion, gender, national origin, age, sexual orientation, mental or physical
disabilities, pregnancy, medical condition, marital status or any other characteristic protected by law.
CASEL employs diverse staff and values a diverse work environment.