State of Massachusetts Contracted Family Engagement Specialist in Malden, Massachusetts

First consideration will be given to those applicants that apply within the first 14 days.



PLEASE NOTE THAT PURSUANT TO MASSACHUSETTS GENERAL LAW, CONTRACTED EMPLOYEES ARE NOT PAID FOR THE ELEVEN SCHEDULED HOLIDAYS, DO NOT RECEIVE ANY PAID, VACATION, PERSONAL LEAVE BENEFITS, OR CONTRIBUTE TO THE STATE RETIREMENT SYSTEM OR SOCIAL SECURITY. AS A STATE CONTRACTED EMPLOYEE, YOU MUST PARTICIPATE IN DIRECT DEPOSIT AND CONTRIBUTE TOWARDS THE COMMONWEALTH OF MASSACHUSETTS STATE ALTERNATE RETIREMENT PLAN, ("OBRA PLAN").

The mission for the Office of Family and Student Support within the Center for Educational Options at the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) is to provide programs and support systems that help all students gain the knowledge, skills and values needed to be well prepared for post-secondary options as well as a career and citizenship. The Office of Student and Family Support (SFS) works in partnership with educators, schools, students, families, and other agencies and organizations across the Commonwealth to advance the Department'smission. Our programs and initiatives aim to ensure access to high quality and student-centered pre-K-grade 12 education and strengths-based supports.

The Contracted Family Engagement Specialist will work to coordinate the Department’s family engagement efforts, including efforts to build internal capacity to support districts and schools in engaging with families. The specialist will also support implementation of the Statewide Family Engagement Center Grant, a five-year, federally-funded opportunity.

DESE is seeking an individual who can demonstrate the following:

  • Understanding and experience working with diverse (race, ethnicity, language, literacy levels, ability, socio-economic, sexual orientation) families, children, youth and communities;

  • Experience implementing culturally responsive family engagement practices that seek to address implicit bias;

  • Experience designing and conducting professional development that includes understanding and experience in supporting adult learners; and

  • Ability to outreach to diverse families as part of effective family engagement practices

DESE is committed to educational access and equity. This commitment means that:

• All students, and especially our most vulnerable students — inclusive of low-income

students, English Learner students, students of color, and students with disabilities — will

have access to high-quality educational opportunities and will experience high expectations

to ensure greater equity in outcomes;

• All educators are culturally responsive and honor as well as leverage diversity in their

education practices;

• All families and caregivers are valuable partners and help to create a rich educational

experience for students; and

• The Center for Educational Options, in partnership with other DESE Centers, will collaborate

on efforts to eliminate explicit and implicit bias, to dismantle racism and to promote social

justice within districts, schools, and programs.

The Contracted Family Engagement Specialist, will perform the following duties:

  • Coordinate the Department’s internal family engagement initiatives, including the design and implementation of a family engagement inventory;

  • Develop and oversee the implementation of a plan to support family engagement infrastructure building within the Department;

  • Oversee the regular meeting and coordination of the Department’s internal family engagement workgroup;

  • Serve as the liaison between the Department and the lead agency for the Statewide Family Engagement Center Grant, including assistance in designing and implementing grant planning meetings as well as supporting the management of the state advisory group required by the grant;

  • Support the final development of the state’s Prenatal through Grade 12 Family Engagement framework and implementation plan;

  • Work with internal and external partners to develop a unified message around family engagement that reflects the Department’s new definition;

  • Understanding requirements related to family engagement in federal and state policies and initiatives (e.g., ELPACs, SEPACs, IEP teams, ESSA Titles, Educator Evaluation, After-School and Out-of-School Time Programs, etc.), help SEA staff, districts and schools understand how to effectively implement these requirements by using, building and sharing evidence on effective family engagement practices, including promising practices;

  • Work with Department staff, districts and schools to engage with community organizations around family engagement;

  • Provide professional development, internally and externally, on evidence-based family engagement practices (statewide events, regional sessions, communities of practice);

  • Design and manage the ongoing build out of a family engagement web-page that is family friendly, easily navigated and can share resources with families as well as internal and external partners;

  • Identify best practices on how to share information with diverse families and, beyond the website, design additional methods for outreaching to and sharing information with families; and

  • Perform other functions as assigned.

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Ability to communicate, orally and in writing, and work effectively with a wide range of constituencies in a diverse community.

  • Ability to proactively support and uphold the team mission and core values including con ganas (acting with purpose); kaizen (continuous improvement), ujima (collaborative teamwork), stewardship, learner-centered, equity and racial equity.

  • Ability to work collaboratively with internal and external partners.

  • Ability to work on multiple tasks and/or projects concurrently.

  • Ability to practice self-reflection and self-correction to solve problems.

  • Ability to learn and build on the varying cultural and community norms of students, families, school districts and other community members through awareness of one’s own cultural identity and views about difference.

  • Bilingual or multi-lingual;

  • Ability to work as part of a team and commitment to being part of a learning organization;

  • Experience working with families, districts and/or schools to empower family members and buildagency around their student’s development and learning;

  • Experience working with community organizations to support family engagement efforts and build collaboration with schools and districts around their partnerships with families;

  • Responsibility for oversight of grant activities;

  • Understanding of how to evaluate implementation of effective family engagement

  • ability to establish and maintain harmonious working relationships with others; and

  • ability to work independently and as part of a collaborative team.

  • This position requires traveling around the state and as such requires a valid driver’s license and ability to travel to meetings, professional development opportunities and other events as identified.

  • This position could require limited evening and/or weekend hours, as needed, to engage with families.

This is a full-time contracted position, 37.5 hours per week, through June 30, 2019. The extension of this contracted position is contingent upon funding availability and approval.

**Questions regarding this posting or the application process should be referred to

Maureen O’Brien atmtobrien@doe.mass.edu or 781-338-6107.


Minimum Entrance Requirements:


Applicants must have a Bachelor’s degree and at least four years of full-time, or equivalent part-time, professional educational experience in a specific or related content area, educational program/or service;

A Master’s degree or higher in a specific or related educational content area may be substituted for two years of the required experience -- 30 semester hours equals one year of experience for substitution purposes.

Education toward a degree in a specific or related educational content area will be prorated on the basis of the proportion of the requirements actually completed.

Special Requirements: Based on assignment, possession of a current and valid Massachusetts Motor Vehicle Operator's License or the equivalent from another state may be required.

An Equal Opportunity / Affirmative Action Employer. Females, minorities, veterans, and persons with disabilities are strongly encouraged to apply.

Job: *Education

Organization: *Department of Elementary and Secondary Education

Title: Contracted Family Engagement Specialist

Location: Massachusetts-Malden - 75 Pleasant Street

Requisition ID: 1900001F