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14 May 2019

School Network Staff Chief, South Bend Empowerment Zone

South Bend Empowerment Zone
 South Bend, St. Joseph County, Indiana, United States

Job Description

Reporting directly to the South Bend Empowerment Zone (SBEZ) Board, the South Bend Empowerment Zone Chief will be the founding leader of the Zone. The Chief will support the execution of the overall vision and strategy for the Zone and build and maintain a strong partnership and learning culture between the Zone and the South Bend Community School Corporation (SBCSC). The Chief is responsible for all aspects of the Zone’s organizational health, including overseeing a sound budget process, supporting school leaders in advancing schools’ missions/visions and academic goals, and ensuring that schools within the Zone have the necessary operational and financial support to use their autonomy to accomplish dramatic improvements in achievement for all student groups. The Chief will have the opportunity to both hire a small team to support his or her work and utilize coaches and supports through Empower Schools and Education Resource Strategies, two key partners of the SBEZ.


Who We Are:

SBCSC is in a historic period of change and innovation. Recently, the Indiana State Board of Education approved a plan to create a transformation zone within South Bend. The goal of this zone is to accelerate improvement in several schools by empowering them with additional autonomy and providing these schools with support partners to guide them through the work of school redesign. SBEZ is uniquely poised to transform one middle and four elementary schools into environments where all children regardless of background have the opportunities and supports they need to succeed. SBEZ is committed to supporting and developing talented and committed Instructional Leaders and, at each SBEZ school, Teacher Leadership Teams will work alongside School Leaders to design and implement customized School Plans that serve as the guiding templates for school transformation. SBEZ schools have autonomy over their budget, staffing structure, calendar, schedule, curriculum, and professional development.



The core responsibilities of the Chief include but are not limited to:

Leadership and Partnership: Provide key guidance to and build strong relationships with SBCSC leadership, SBEZ school leaders and staff, and community stakeholders to facilitate true partnership in the interest of SBEZ students

  • In collaboration with the SBEZ Board and key SBCSC partners, develop the Zone’s founding strategy and associated “Zone team” organizational structure
  • Facilitate regular communication and collaboration across the Zone and SBCSC
  • Build strong relationships with Zone school leaders, understand their needs, and help them access supports aligned to those needs
  • Work to expand the pool of high-quality partners supporting Zone schools
  • Hire and manage SBEZ staff


Improvement Systems and School Planning and Operations: Design and implement systems and operational strategies to ensure a strong Zone launch and ongoing performance

  • Develop and implement systems for sharing good practices and lessons learned across Zone schools and with SBCSC
  • Lead the process of developing and evaluating School Operational Plans in coordination with support partner organizations and subject to the approval of the SBEZ Board
  • Coordinate with SBCSC on key centralized functions, operational services, and federal and state reporting requirements, resolving any issues that may arise
  • Develop deliberate talent pipelines for school leaders and teacher leaders
  • Make school leadership transition recommendations to the SBEZ Board and facilitate change management at schools as needed
  • Hire and manage a team member to work with SBCSC staff in the development and execution of operational guidelines for the Zone’s autonomous district schools


Accountability and Monitoring: Develop a school performance framework and support schools to collect, analyze, and respond to data to inform their school improvement efforts

  • Develop and refine, with direction and input from the SBEZ Board and Zone school leaders, a Zone school performance framework to measure school and subgroup performance against a set of measures
  • Liaise with state representatives to ensure that Zone school monitoring and compliance processes align with state requirements, especially for English Language Learners and students with disabilities
  • Hire and manage a team member to design and implement data collection and analysis processes


Finance: Serve as the Zone’s point person on all financial aspects of the Zone, including school-based budgeting and shared service contracts

  • Partner with SBCSC to facilitate school-based budgeting processes across all Zone schools and ensure smooth functioning of key Zone financial systems, including procurement and HR
  • Lead the Zone’s funding negotiations with the district
  • Negotiate and manage contracts for any shared services across the Zone schools


External Relations: Serve as a spokesperson for the Zone and communicate with internal and external stakeholders about the Zone’s strategy and progress

  • Serve as a spokesperson for the Zone, articulating a clear vision of the Zone’s strategic goals and objectives and engaging all stakeholders
  • Communicate with and make regular presentations to the SBEZ Board of Directors and when necessary, the SBCSC School Board
  • Develop and share communications materials about the Zone’s strategy and progress


Desired Attributes:

  • An unwavering commitment to equity and excellence for all students and demonstrated ability in promoting equity in every decision
  • A demonstrated belief in and alignment with the mission, vision, and values for a high-autonomy, high-accountability system built to empower educators to improve student outcomes
  • Ability to maintain effective relationships and build trust and credibility with a diverse group of key stakeholders
  • Ability to speak effectively on behalf of the Zone and instill confidence and buy-in from key stakeholders, including SBCSC leadership, state and federal agencies, local school board, educational associations, interest groups, and parents
  • Strong background in municipal and/or school operations, including finance and human capital
  • Ability to organize, prioritize, and oversee implementation of multiple initiatives
  • Outstanding problem solving, strategic thinking, and decision making skills, including the ability to balance data, wisdom, experience, and judgement to make sound decisions
  • Incredible work ethic and ability to do whatever it takes to get the job done
  • Bachelor’s degree required (advanced degree strongly preferred)
  • At least 7-10 years of work experience
  • School or organizational leadership experience preferred


Additional Information:

The base salary range for this position is $110,000 – $140,000.  Additional performance-based incentives and competitive benefits including access to medical, dental, and vision insurance; FSA and dependent care reimbursement accounts; and a retirement program will be included in the total compensation package.

SBEZ is an equal opportunity employer. We celebrate diversity and are committed to creating an inclusive environment for all employees.

How to Apply

Application: If interested in this position, please send resume and cover letter to

Bureaus: Indiana. Job Categories: Full-Time. Job Types: School Network Staff. Salaries: 100,000 and above.