New York City Department of Education Director of Strategic Communications, DECE in NEW YORK, New York

Position Summary:The Division of Early Childhood Education (DECE) administers Pre-K programs for NYC students in district schools and New York City Early Education Centers (NYCEECs). In its oversight of these programs and all related operations, DECE provides families access to high-quality early childhood options that prepare their children for academic success and the skills to lead a successful life. Working together with families and programs, DECE ensures that children are engaged, nurtured, and supported with the tools needed to develop into independent learners and creative problem-solvers.

The Director of Strategic Communications reports to the Chief of Staff (COS) for the Deputy Chancellor for Early Childhood Education. The Chief of Staff serves as a high-level advisor to the Deputy Chancellor for Early Childhood Education, who leads publicly-funded early childhood initiatives citywide. The Director of Strategic Communications is responsible for overseeing and managing the Communications team of the Division of Early Childhood Education, and for driving effective communication strategies that support the successful execution of the mission, vision, and overall goals of DECE. This position supports the COS in developing and executing effective communication strategies. The Director serves as the Division’s primary liaison for communication and inter-governmental initiatives with other Department of Education (DOE) offices, relevant City agencies, and key partners. Performs related work.

Reports to:Chief of Staff for the Deputy Chancellor for Early Childhood Education

Direct Reports:Strategic Communications Manager, Content Coordinator.

Key Relationships:Oversees a team of two full- time staff, and works closely with DECE’s Executive Directors to manage policy decision-making and implementation for high-priority initiatives and to facilitate communication across the organization during a time of expansion. Maintains strong relationships with the Press Office, Intergovernmental Affairs in the DOE and the Mayor’s Office, and the Office of the Deputy Mayor for Strategic Policy Initiatives. Under the supervision of the COS, the Communications Director ensures the effective management of sensitive, urgent, or timely communications and escalations, and operates with discretion and sound judgment. Builds strong relationships with key partner teams that oversee, support, or provide publicly-funded early childhood educational services. Key relationships include the DOE’s Offices of Communications, Inter-governmental Affairs, Teacher Recruitment and Quality, Office of School Support Services, Operations, and the Office of Student Enrollment. Develops and fosters close working relationships with the DECE Outreach team. The individual in this role will serve as a thought partner to the COS and engage in strategic planning around communications with relevant teams in DECE.


  • Oversight and direction-setting for strategic communications, ensuring that all early childhood programs, including those housed in community-based organizations, receive critical information on policy and operations.
  • Serves as a top-level advisor to the Deputy Chancellor and Chief of Staff for the Division of Early Childhood Education for all early childhood communications work; makes recommendations and presentations as needed.
  • Develops project plans and timelines around internal- and external-facing communication in coordination with the DECE Executive Directors, and tracks progress throughout the year toward the achievement of these key milestones; reports to the COS regarding project management.
  • Oversees and is responsible for strategy and execution of critical public awareness and enrollment campaigns for publicly-funded early childhood education in New York City; collaborates on similar campaign strategies for early childhood teacher recruitment efforts.
  • Oversees the execution of new strategic practices for DECE, including recurring newsletters to New York City Early Childhood Centers (NYCEECs), the DECE team, and the development of appropriate content for other DOE communications, e.g., Principals Weekly.
  • Collaborates with Executive Directors to identify critical areas of program improvement with communications implications; uses evaluation methods to determine strengths and weakness and develop recommendations to improve communications workflows and processes critical to objectives in each team’s workstream.
  • Directs the development and execution of critical communication strategies related to external-facing DECE meetings and information sessions or presentations.
  • Maintains and consistently strives to improve DECE overview and orientation materials used for presentations on DECE’s mission and Pre-K for All program, internally and externally.
  • Oversees the development and regular updates of various Frequently Asked Questions documents for the Division of Early Childhood Education, to be used by DECE staff, NYCEECs, families, and DOE partners, including Inter-Governmental Affairs, the Mayor’s Office, and the DOE’s Press office.
  • Oversees and prioritizes plans for addressing issues that are impacting progress towards initiative benchmarks.
  • In coordination with the CEO and the DCO, prepares policy recommendations for these protocols to present to senior leadership.
  • Support efforts to develop, plan, and execute communication initiatives on behalf of the DECE Executive Team and its partners, including the dissemination of important policy directives and major press rollouts.
  • Provides “rapid response” support on Pre-K issues for the DOE Press Secretary and IGA.
  • Prepares and briefs leadership for interviews, events, meetings as needed; vets all public-facing information shared with Pre-K providers, informing press teams as necessary; advises and supports the DOE Press Secretary and IGA teams on early childhood related matters.
  • Stays apprised and informed about relevant stories in local and national media related to DOE’s early childhood initiatives and identifies opportunities to work with the DOE’s Press secretary to propose positive stories about DECE.
  • Oversees all contracts related to communications initiatives, including the development of reports and presentations, materials needed for public awareness campaigns on early childhood, and paid media budgets.
  • Represents the DOE at various interagency meetings and public forums as needed.
  • Assigns high-priority special projects to individual staff members as needed.
  • Provides leadership for citywide interagency early childhood education initiatives of the New York City Mayor's Office, DOHMH, DOB, DOI, and other agencies as needed.

Qualification Requirements:


  1. A Baccalaureate degree from an accredited college with 24 credits in English, journalism or public relations, plus five (5) years of full-time paid experience in public relations, journalism or advertising, including two (2) years in an administrative, supervisory or consultative capacity; or
  2. A combination of education and/or experience which is equivalent to "1" above. Graduate study in English, journalism, or public relations may be substituted for up to one (1) year of required experience. However, all candidates must have at least two (2) years of administrative, supervisory, or consultative experience in public relations, journalism or advertising.


  • MBA and/or advanced doctorate degree in a relevant discipline.
  • Experience with supervision and evaluation of staff.
  • Ability to solve organizational roadblocks.
  • Ability to respond quickly to a dynamic and evolving environment.
  • Excellent written and oral and communication and editing skills.
  • Prior knowledge of and experience in education and/or government.
  • Strong results-oriented and quality performance work ethic.
  • Ability to anticipate projects and take initiative.
  • Understanding of and support for meeting the needs of special education students and English language learners.
  • Internal candidates preferred.

Salary: $102,788+

(Internal candidates who are selected for this position and who currently hold comparable or less senior positions within the DOE will not make less than their current salary.)

Please include a resume and cover letter with your application.

Applications will be accepted through* July 3*, 2017 until 3:00 p.m.

NOTE: The filling of all positions is subject to budget availability and/or grant funding.


It is the policy of the Department of Education of the City of New York to provide educational and employment opportunities without regard to race, color, religion, creed, ethnicity, national origin, alienage, citizenship status, age, marital status, partnership status, disability, sexual orientation, gender (sex), military status, prior record of arrest or conviction (except as permitted by law), predisposing genetic characteristics, or status as a victim of domestic violence, sexual offenses and stalking, and to maintain an environment free of harassment on any of the above-noted grounds, including sexual harassment or retaliation. Inquiries regarding compliance with this equal opportunity policy may be directed to: Office of Equal Opportunity, 65 Court Street, Room 1102, Brooklyn, New York 11201, or visit the OEO website at

Tracking Code: 12479

Job Location: NEW YORK, New York, United States

Position Type: Full-Time/Regular

New Posting: Yes

Readvertisement: No

Recanvass: N/A

District: N/A