The Next Step Public Charter School, Executive Director

Washington D.C.
Aug 25, 2017
Sep 24, 2017
Focus Areas
Education, Employment
Position Type
Full Time
Degree Level
Willingness to Travel
up to 25%
Experience Level

The Next Step Public Charter School


Located in Washington, DC, The Next Step Public Charter School (TNS) was founded to provide young adults (ages 16-24) who face extraordinary challenges and who are not supported in traditional high schools with the opportunity to continue their education. The school was originally chartered in 1996 and serves a high proportion of students of color from low-income backgrounds; many are also new to the country and 70% of students are non-native English speakers. Today, a total of 500 students are served annually.


TNS’ model features both day and night school options and offers bilingual ABE (adult basic education) as well as Spanish and English GED and ESL programs. Educational services in English and Spanish are matched with flexible placement and pacing, extensive wraparound social services, case management, and life skills instruction. The TNS board and staff are committed to programmatic innovation and recently received a grant from CityBridge Education to redesign the school’s academic programs and service delivery system. For more details about the organization, please visit


Executive Director Role


The Next Step Public Charter School is seeking a seasoned manager and visionary leader with a passion for the organization’s mission and a thoughtful approach to guide it to its next chapter. This new Executive Director will be responsible for taking TNS to the next level of academic excellence for the youth it serves by delivering a rich program of instructional and support services as well as ensuring the organization maintains a high level of financial sustainability and organizational health. S/he will guide staff and the board to set goals and define strategic priorities and ensure alignment of daily activities with the broader vision of ensuring TNS’ programs meet high standards for academic, support service, and college/career prep outcomes for all students. S/he will also be responsible for closely monitoring the policy and compliance landscape, advocating for TNS’ students and serving as a voice for their concerns with public officials and education leaders.


The ideal Executive Director candidate will be an effective leader and experienced manager with: a track record of results in achieving high outcomes for youth; an eye for recruiting and retaining high-quality talent; a passion for educational equity and serving youth who have not experienced academic success in more traditional school settings; an ability to develop relationships with a diverse array of constituents; and the skills to build and maintain high-functioning systems across a nonprofit charter school organization. Excellent interpersonal communication and experience working with similar communities to those that TNS serves are also essential to this role.




The Executive Director’s key responsibilities include:


  • Leading the vision for The Next Step PCS’ success, including ensuring that its academic programs, support services delivery, community engagement, and external partnerships are highly effective and tightly aligned to the school’s mission and goals;


  • Managing principals and other senior staff by acting not only as a supervisor but also as a coach and consensus builder and by remaining deeply committed to developing and bringing out the strengths of all of TNS’ people while holding them accountable for their goals and desired student outcomes;


  • Partnering with the Board of Directors and funders to secure and allocate the resources and supports necessary to maintain the health of the school, remaining solutions-oriented while pushing the boundaries of what is possible to realize the highest levels of success for TNS’ youth and their communities;


  • Inspiring students, faculty, staff and other partners to be their best selves every day, always keeping the community’s moral and ethical compass pointing in the right direction and ensuring an unyielding focus at all times on what is best for TNS’ students, their families and community and their futures.  




In order to fulfill these responsibilities, the ideal Executive Director will be:


  • An accomplished leader with a minimum of 10 years demonstrated success as a school-based administrator, nonprofit executive and/or senior manager that ensures outstanding outcomes for the youth they serve.


  • Inspiring in their management style, with experience leading leaders; one who sees the possibility in all adults and is willing to devote time to coach and develop them while holding them accountable to measurable results.

  • Experienced in overseeing a complex organization, knowledgeable about best practices around school growth and programmatic expansion, and able to manage organizational change effectively.


  • A self-reflective leader who understands the effects of race, class, ethnicity, income, and other issues of difference in our society and has personally worked in similar urban communities to ensure all students have an opportunity to achieve their personal dreams of college and career success.

  • Skilled in strategic planning, project management, and organization; able to focus on big picture priorities while not losing sight of the details.


  • Effective in working with local community leaders and government officials to advocate for the needs of TNS and the youth it serves.

  • Able to ensure the financial health and sustainability of TNS’ programs through developing strong partnerships with internal and external stakeholders, raising public and private dollars as needed.


  • Dynamic and versatile, able to engage a variety of individuals in dialogue and speak in a clear, compelling and authentic manner about the organization’s goals and priorities.

To Apply


Please submit a resume and thoughtful cover letter addressed to Celine Fejeran, Chair of The Next Step Public Charter School Executive Director Search Committee online at For additional questions about this position or to speak with someone about your interest, please contact Alicia Robinson at or at 510.575.9635.


The Next Step PCS is an equal opportunity employer and an organization that values diversity. Recruiting staff to create an inclusive organization is a priority, and we encourage applicants from all cultures, races, colors, religions, sexes, national or regional origins, ages, disability status, sexual orientations, gender identities, military or veteran status or other status protected by law. All candidates are evaluated solely on their qualifications to perform the work required.