Manager of Innovation and Learning

Job Type

Full Time



Start Date


Application Deadline



East Palo Alto
United States



The Primary School (TPS) is a new non-profit organization dedicated to dramatically improving health and educational outcomes for children. Fueled by the belief that the current model of school is too limited to close the achievement gap for our nation’s most at risk children, TPS is designing a new model of primary education and primary care which braids together education, health, and family support services starting at birth. We pair high expectations and joy, in a powerful community of supports to care for the whole child. We partner with a progressive health center that aims to redefine the boundaries of primary health care. With this innovative new model, we aim to expand the traditional definition of “school” in order to prepare all children to succeed in college, career, and life.

The Primary School approach has three defining characteristics:

  • Provide integrated supports: We partner with an existing health care organization to address the needs of the whole child. Educators, parent coaches and healthcare professionals come together as a team to provide integrated academic and health (physical, mental, and socio-emotional) services to students and families.
  • Start early: We admit students at or before birth, and will provide parent-driven, early childhood supports alongside medical care during the critical years of child development, ensuring that students are ready for school at age 3. Our infant-toddler program consists of regular parent-child playgroups to support the goals of attachment, language development and resilience.
  • Offer two-generation supports: We put families at the center of this work and focus on building parent capacity to support the health and education of their children. Families receive services, including primary care, parenting coaching and connection to other social services, to help them better support their children and become healthier themselves.

We opened our first site in East Palo Alto in 2016 and currently serve 250 children (ages 0 to 5) and their families. In 2018-19, the TPS school will serve children Pre-K (3s and 4s) through 1st grade. TPS was seeded by the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, a major national philanthropy.

TPS is committed to designing a model that is replicable in other communities and redefines what is possible for our highest need children and families. We are investing in design, research, evaluation, and dissemination that will allow us to replicate our model and transfer our learnings to others.


The Manager of Innovation and Learning (MIL) will work with the Director of Innovation and Learning to support the implementation of a systematic learning system to understand what elements of our program are having the greatest impact on child and family outcomes, and develop insights that will help us improve our day-to-day work.

The MIL will support a data rich ecosystem in which our team actively uses data to help us understand, develop, and refine the various elements of our new model to deliver the best possible outcomes to our children and families. This role is action-based - we seek to learn information that can help us modify the way we serve children and families, immediately.

Over the long term, The Primary School seeks to contribute to national change in policy and practice, across multiple sectors that affect children and families, by understanding and disseminating what works. We have a dual mission of 1) directly achieving the best possible outcomes for the children and families we serve and 2) broadly impacting the space through policy and practice change. The MIL will play a key role in understanding and documenting what works and what can be replicated in other environments.


Support implementation of a rapid-cycle learning system

  • Support efforts to build a learning organization culture, help us learn as quickly and precisely as possible what works, and drive insights that will impact program design and delivery.
  • Support development of measurement plans to address learning goals.
  • Identify and develop tools, instruments, and metrics to evaluate elements of model.
  • Develop process measures and interim outputs as early indicators of success.
  • Review and revise overarching TPS child and family outcomes, short and long term.
  • Perform a variety of measurement activities to understand the value of our model:
  • Conduct focus groups and observations.
  • Collect and analyze data on child and family outcomes.
  • Support program improvement initiatives:
  • Learn about ways to achieve even better results by analyzing insights
  • Support regular reflection cycles with program staff.
  • Stay abreast of emerging science and practice in the field that may have practical impact on our work.
  • Conduct literature reviews as needed to inform our work.

Document and share our learning

  • Document our practices, program elements, and lessons learned both to guide internal efforts and to share externally.
  • Provide clear and useful reports for staff, board, and other stakeholders.
  • Support early efforts to disseminate what we are learning to practitioners and policymakers.


  • Believes in the mission of The Primary School and that all children and families are capable of extraordinary things.
  • High level of excitement about working alongside program developers and implementers; recognition of the symbiotic, mutually reinforcing relationship among the different roles and responsibilities.
  • Knowledge of evaluation methodologies, including quantitative and qualitative data collection and analysis methods; experience with the design and evaluation of social services programs (e.g., education, family supports, healthcare) is preferred.
  • Is able to balance the rigor of academic research with the speed of business innovation.
  • Is decisive, adaptable, and results driven.
  • Brings a systems building mindset.
  • Strong project management, planning and communication competencies.
  • Has an appetite for new approaches and the patience and skill to implement change.
  • Is highly collaborative and excited to work with an interdisciplinary team; has a track record as an exceptional communicator, particularly in cross-cultural situations; experience preparing and making effective presentations to diverse groups large and small with different interests, priorities, and experience with data
  • Excels in a fast-paced, entrepreneurial, and innovative organization.
  • Is deeply kind, humble, and courageous.


  • You are an East Palo Alto or Belle Haven native and/or have experience working with a community similar to East Palo Alto and Belle Haven.
  • You speak fluent Spanish.


Salary and benefits will be competitive and commensurate with experience.

Level of Language Proficiency


Professional Level


Minimum Education Required

4-year degree

How To Apply

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