Founded in 2010, UP Education Network is the largest nonprofit school network in Massachusetts and is one of the few in the country that is successfully tackling the challenges of in-district school turnaround. Since its founding, UP has grown from one school serving 480 students to a network of six tuition-free public schools—three in Boston, two in Lawrence, and one in Springfield—serving more than 3,000 of the state’s historically underserved students.
In early 2010, Massachusetts passed a landmark education reform law to intervene in Level 4 schools, defined as the state’s most struggling schools. The legislation created different vehicles to restart low-performing schools as autonomous district schools. After the school district, city, or state identifies the school in need of restart, UP Education Network takes on full management of the school to which they are assigned.
Since 2010, UP Education Network has launched three UP Academies as traditional neighborhood schools and two as in-district charter schools; the organization also serves as the receiver for an additional neighborhood school. UP Education Network opens UP Academies fully enrolled while retaining the same students, including those with disabilities and English Learners. Because their efforts address existing schools, the organization operates inside of—not independent of—school districts. UP Education Network incorporates innovations in the areas of instructional practice, time, resources, and technology from the highest-performing district and charter schools into their restart schools, creating a new, high-quality, public school model in which their schools remain a part of UP’s respective districts.
Though less than a decade old, UP Education Network has already seen great success in its efforts:
UP is fully dedicated to rapidly transforming chronically underperforming district schools into extraordinary schools that sustain high achievement over time.
While all of the schools UP Education Network manages are funded by the public dollar, the network office is funded by a combination of school management fees and private philanthropy. This year, UP is targeting $3.1M in fundraising to support general operations, including key programs like their newly established UP Leadership Institute and recent investments in social and emotional learning. Historically, UP has been fortunate to receive support from a few key funders who have provided a substantial portion (i.e., approximately two-thirds) of their fundraising need. The majority of UP’s funders have been foundations affiliated with its Board members that focus on supporting the growth of education organizations.
However, as UP enters the next phase, the organization is looking to develop a more diversified funding base, both in the number and type of donors. UP is seeking to develop a steady base of recurring major gifts outside the venture philanthropy realm, as well as establish longer-term commitments among foundation donors. UP also anticipates growing its number of schools in the next year or two and will need to continue to cultivate donors to support that initiative as well.
The Chief Development Officer (CDO) will lead all fundraising efforts for UP Education Network, including individual and corporate giving, state and federal funding opportunities, and the design and execution of capital campaigns. As the first-ever c-level development leader, the CDO will set the vision and strategy for development efforts for the network. The CDO will also serve as a frontline fundraiser, building and maintaining relationships with key stakeholders to generate revenue to accelerate UP’s impact. The Chief Development Officer will report directly to the CEO and serve on UP Education Network’s senior leadership team.
All qualified candidates will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.
Please email your cover letter and resume in confidence to:
Development Guild DDI