School Improvement Consultant (Engagement Specialist)


Reports to: Director, Engagement

Salary: Competitive and commensurate with experience

Location: New Haven (hybrid), with significant in-state travel




The RISE Network’s mission is to ensure all high school students graduate with a plan and the skills and confidence to achieve college and career success. Founded in 2015, RISE partners with public high schools to lead networks where communities work together to use data to learn and improve. Through its core and most comprehensive network, RISE partners with nine high schools and eight districts, serving over 13,000 students in historically marginalized communities.


RISE high schools work together to ensure all students experience success as they transition to, through, and beyond high school by using data to pinpoint needs, form hypotheses, and pursue ideas to advance student achievement. Partner schools have improved Grade 9 promotion rates by nearly 20 percentage points, while also decreasing subgroup gaps and increasing school-wide graduation and college access rates. In 2021, the RISE Network was honored to receive the Carnegie Foundation’s annual Spotlight on Quality in Continuous Improvement recognition. Increasingly, RISE is pursuing opportunities to scale its impact through research publications, consulting partnerships, professional development experiences, and other avenues to drive excellent student outcomes.



Position Summary and Essential Job Functions:


As part of the RISE Network’s Engagement Team, the Engagement Specialist, School Improvement will manage consulting relationships with partner schools, districts, and organizations working to promote on-track and postsecondary success. These consulting engagements generally involve coaching with school and district leaders, collaborative strategy formulation and implementation support, and design and facilitation of adult professional learning experiences. RISE manages consulting engagements with several dozen schools across Connecticut and in neighboring states. Reporting to the Director of Engagement, the Engagement Specialist will work collaboratively with the Engagement Team to lead improvement coaching with educators and plan and deliver other contracted services as we continue to scale our impact in new school communities. The work of the Engagement Specialist will be central to RISE’s scale and sustainability efforts in years to come. 


This is an extraordinary opportunity for a highly motivated or entrepreneurial individual who is skilled in developing, launching, and managing new strategies and partnerships, is energized by cultivating relationships with diverse stakeholders in and around public schools, and excels at coaching and building the capacity of educators.


Responsibilities include, but are not limited to:


Consulting project support and strategy

  • Deliver excellent products and services aligned to consulting scopes of work.

  • Support change management and program design in schools and districts through strategic coaching and planning.

  • Build strong relationships with school and district leadership, and networks of peer organizations.

  • Develop organized toolkits of resources and project planning tools. 

  • Prepare well-written agendas, session descriptions, and other professional learning materials to support coaching and professional learning.

  • Develop and maintain organized and transparent project management systems.


Coaching and facilitation of cross-school collaboration

  • Build educator capacity to lead and sustain improvement efforts, particularly around systems, structures, and practices connected to on-track and postsecondary readiness/planning.

  • Provide strategic coaching to middle and high school educators, leaders, and teams, making use of school and district data to inform goals and priorities.

  • Share coaching resources and promising practices across schools.

  • Build, maintain, and grow excellent partnerships with school and district leaders.


Educator professional learning 

  • Facilitate collaborative processes to set the vision for educator professional learning opportunities.

  • Co-lead school and district outreach and the marketing of professional learning opportunities and support services. 

  • Plan professional learning gatherings and conference sessions, including the design of highly engaging and impactful content with high-quality materials. 

  • Facilitate professional learning sessions and deliver presentations. 


Required Knowledge and Skills:


  • Deep understanding of urban schools and strong belief that all students can achieve at high levels.

  • Demonstrated commitment to equity and ability to lead and develop others through a lens of diversity, equity, and inclusion.

  • Demonstrated skill as a dynamic facilitator of adult learning and an effective manager of consulting engagements.

  • Ability to build strong relationships with diverse stakeholders and to motivate school and district staff.

  • Excellent strategic thinker able to support leaders in adopting new strategies and navigating challenges in implementation.

  • Knowledge of best practices in secondary education, school leadership, and/or team formation.

  • Understanding of principles of continuous improvement and the use of data to drive improvement.

  • Strong organizational and project management skills.

  • Ability to work effectively under pressure and to meet competing demands.

  • Excellent written communication skills.

  • Excellent computer skills; ability to use Google apps (Docs, Sheets, Slides, etc.) and the Internet.


Required Education and Experience:


  • Bachelor’s degree in a relevant field required; master’s degree in a relevant field preferred.

  • Minimum of seven years of professional experience in education with at least two years of experience facilitating improvement in urban schools and/or districts, and a preference for experience in or with high schools.

  • Prior experience working as a coach, consultant, or in another capacity supporting educators and/or administrators in reflection on and improvement in their practice.

  • Prior experience in program development/management and account/client management preferred.


Salary Range:

$75,000 - $100,000

Most new hires' salaries fall within the first half of the range, allowing team members to grow in their roles. For those who already have significant and aligned experiences at the same level as the role, placement may be at the higher end of the range.

RISE is an Equal Opportunity Employer.


RISE is an Equal Opportunity Employer