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WestEd Position Announcement

Benefits Highlights

  • All health benefits effective first of the month following date of hire
  • 15% contribution toward retirement effective day one of employment
  • 15 vacation days, which will increase to 20 days per year beginning the 4th year of employment
  • 12 holidays
  • 12 days sick leave per year
Position Title: Associate Director, NCSI
Reports to:Program Director
Program: Learning Innovations
Salary: Salary Commensurate with Experience
Location: Location Negotiable (Washington, DC Preferred)
Time Base:100%
Position No: 5116

WestEd — a nonpartisan, nonprofit research, development, and service agency — works with education and other communities throughout the United States and abroad to promote excellence, achieve equity, and improve learning for children, youth, and adults. WestEd has more than a dozen offices nationwide, from Massachusetts, Vermont, and Georgia, to Illinois, Arizona, and California, with headquarters in San Francisco.

WestEd is a national leader in providing comprehensive services to communities, schools, districts, and states to develop and support implementation of evidence-based practices for children and youth with disabilities, and strategies for partnerships across general and special education, and early care systems. This position is focused on national issues associated with the performance of children with disabilities cradle to career, and is housed in WestEd’s Learning Innovations Program, where staff work with education and social service agencies to promote excellence, achieve equity and justice, and enhance outcomes for children, youth, and adults. Staff support clients to build the relationships, capacity, knowledge, and skills to be successful and achieve targeted outcomes, and to provide technical assistance and evaluation/research services in many areas, including educator and leader effectiveness, special education, school improvement, criminal and social justice, and health. Our services include direct technical assistance to schools, school districts, community organizations, and to state level education and social service agencies. Our services are leading to the increased use of more effective and evidence-based practice and improved outcomes.

Position Description

WestEd seeks a senior level leader to develop and sustain projects designed to improve outcomes for children and youth with disabilities. This position will provide leadership to support state, regional, and local level clients to realize equitable outcomes for children and youth with disabilities from cradle to career, through two primary roles:
(1) serving as the Associate Director for the National Center for Systemic Improvement (NCSI); and
(2) growing WestEd’s special education and early intervention outcomes portfolio.

The purpose of NCSI is to provide technical assistance to State Education Agencies and IDEA Part C Lead Agencies to increase capacity to support local school districts and early intervention programs in improving educational results and functional outcomes for children with disabilities. Funded by the U.S. Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP), NCSI personnel support states with systems transformation to improve outcomes for special education and early intervention recipients, through the development, implementation, and evaluation of State Systemic Improvement Plans (SSIPs) as required under the IDEA, and other change initiatives. This position will work closely with the Center's Director to lead this highly visible and comprehensive national technical assistance center.

Secondly, the selected candidate will also be expected to grow and lead other work for WestEd to support children and families with disabilities, and will accordingly be engaged in proposal development and project leadership to support future state and national special education projects. Funders with whom the position will interact and pursue new work include federal and state education and health and human services agencies, regional programs, school districts, and philanthropic foundations.

WestEd is seeking applicants with a proven track record leading technical assistance endeavors, and content expertise and experience in designing and implementing education systems at the local, regional and/or state level to deploy and scale-up evidence-based practices to improve outcomes for children with disabilities, from cradle to career. In addition, successful candidates must also have strong capacity for operations and management functions in order to succeed in overseeing the implementation of established protocols and processes. WestEd values individuals who have both strong technical capacity, including a well-informed understanding of the field and the issues facing states, local programs, and others as they pursue issues of equity; as well as a value for collaborative work and respectful collegiality with peers, partners, and clients.


Primary Responsibilities include:

National Center for Systemic Improvement (NCSI): Confer with and engage in vision-setting, planning and operationalizing decision-making with the NCSI Director and other senior NCSI leaders, to ensure effective implementation and management of the Center. Duties include creating and facilitating work processes, maintaining evaluation and reporting efforts, and engaging with clients and partners to bring research to practice through effective technical assistance, with an eye towards systems transformation that results in improved outcomes.

Special Education Service Development: Duties include the following: Engage with WestEd colleagues to identify new funding opportunities, develop competitive proposals, and manage small and large scale projects designed to improve outcomes for children with disabilities; negotiate business relationships with potential and established organizational partners; and develop and manage budgets and associated fiscal responsibilities such as contract development and monitoring.


Ideal Candidates will have the following qualifications:
• Established track record in developing and managing the provision of technical assistance to state and/or local agencies and/or other educational organizations
• Successful experience in developing and managing projects and budgets to ensure tasks are completed on time and within cost parameters
• Sound knowledge of: federal special education policies and regulations; research, issues, and trends in the field of special and general education and early intervention; and systems transformation and continuous improvement research and implementation
• Exceptional interpersonal, networking, and written and oral communication skills
• Ability to lead diverse teams and individuals within complex and diffuse organizational structures to reach established goals, including strong competencies in facilitation, consultation, and coaching
• Demonstrated success in developing proposals in response to competitive and sole-source opportunities, including drafting compelling narratives and well-conceived budgets.
• Ability to use online tools and technology to collaborate with clients, staff, and partners, and to conceptually guide internal data collection and reporting systems
• Be collaborative, diplomatic, and comfortable meeting fast turn-around deadlines, and be able to effectively engage with external clients at all organizational levels.
• Possess a graduate degree (Masters or Doctorate) in special education, human service/ education administration, organizational leadership, or related degrees in Education or Health and Human Service arenas.

Application Process

We invite you to Apply for this Position.

If you are an individual with a disability and need an accommodation to complete the online application process, please call 415.615.3131. Please leave a message and a member of our Human Resources team will return your call within three business days. Alternatively, you may send an email to with "Applicant Accommodation" in the subject line of the email. Please note that this phone number and email are only for those individuals with a disability who would like to request an accommodation to apply for a job. If you are not an individual with a disability and have a question or comment, please email

Human Resources
730 Harrison Street
San Francisco, CA 94107

WestEd is an Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, or veterans’ status or other status protected by applicable law.