Director of Communications in San Antonio, TX

$200K - $250K(Ladders Estimates)

IDEA Public Schools   •  

San Antonio, TX 78201

Industry: Education, Government & Non-Profit


8 - 10 years

Posted 23 days ago

Role Mission: The Director of Communications will steward IDEA's brand locally and nationally by spearheading IDEA's internal and external communications strategy. S/he will serve as a deputy spokesperson for the organization for regional and national media outlets in 7 regions where IDEA operates schools and 4 target regions across the US, oversee IDEA's owned media channels-the website, publications, social media accounts, crisis communications, programming for signature and secondary events, The Hub-, earned media strategy-PR and Media Relations-, IDEA's internal communications and family communications strategy, donor stewardship, and organizational messaging. Under his/her leadership, and in partnership with the Director of Marketing and Director of Enrollment, IDEA will continue to elevate and increase brand awareness of its high-performing public charter schools, student success, and commitment to College For All. S/he will coach and develop a team of four direct reports to results in their respective functional areas.


  1. Coach and Manage a Team:
  • Directly manage a team of four to results in their respective functional areas:
  • Internal Communications Manager
  • External Communications Manager
  • External Communications Manager
  • Social Media Manager
  • Oversee the goal setting and professional development process for your direct reports.
  • Host Weekly Team Meetings with the entire Communications team (5 people)
  • Host Weekly Check-Ins with each Direct Report
  • Host Communications team Daily Huddles

  1. In partnership with the Sr. VP of Marketing, Communications, & Enrollment develop and manage strategic communications plan that include, but is not limited to the following strategic priorities:
  • Organize the IDEA Story
  • Create a comprehensive messaging document that organizes all organization priorities, attributes, and initiatives into defining messages.
  • Expand the IDEA Audience
  • Re-engage in comprehensive outreach strategies to press and partners across Texas.
  • Create IDEA Storytellers
  • Focus internal communications on key messages and increase opportunities and incentives for staff, students, and families to engage with key messages.
  • New Region Entry
  • Develop and implement strategic plans, communications, resources, and media relations tactics to help generate leads and increase brand awareness and recognition when IDEA enters a new region.
  • Work closely with IDEA's Executive Directors to develop and execute regional strategic media and public engagement plans that are aligned with organizational priorities
  • Develop quarterly publications
  • Develop quarterly publications (IMPACT Magazine, Persistence/Enrollment Publications, IDEA's Annual Report) that help to steward persistence and brand awareness at IDEA
  • Create IDEA's Crisis Communications Protocols & Resources
  • Create a crisis communications strategic plan, resources, and resource portal for IDEA campuses.
  • Serve as the Marketing, Communications, & Enrollment team liaison for IDEA's student safety and crisis communications by playing a key role in the development of staff and parent communications, resources and training.
  • Make IDEA a Thought Leader Nationally in Education/Education Reform
  • Promote IDEA leaders and programs as subject matter experts on key initiatives and objectives.
  • Play a key role in leveraging national media to drive broad public understanding of IDEA's mission and impact and supported key organizational goals

  1. Collaborate with your peers, IDEA's Director of Marketing and Director of Enrollment, on cross functional tasks:
  • Work with the Director of Marketing to develop copy for marketing materials
  • Thought partner with the Director of Marketing and Creative Services Manager to ensure the website is reflective of the latest editorial content (ongoing), allows for campuses to personalize their pages, and integrates a blog and newsroom, implements learnings, content changes, and new UX from external and internal website audits, and the development of IMPACT magazine and IDEA Events webpages.
  • Develop and manage extensive communications strategic plans to support enrollment and recruitment efforts

  1. Internal Communications: Serve as the editor in chief for internal communications at IDEA Public Schools in partnership with, and by advising, your direct reports, to ensure Internal Communications at IDEA is timely, consistent, and rooted in a scalable and sustainable strategic framework as IDEA's employee population continues to grow.
  • The Hub: IDEA's intranet site that should be the go-to source for all communications. The Hub has DropBox-like functionality for personal file storage, access to organizational team sites (managed by teams), weekly news and announcements (managed by Team MCE), and more. Increased adoption and functionality is the goal for the next AY.
  • Donor Stewardship
  • IDEA's Blog: IDEA generates owned blog content 2-3/week to help share news, announcements, and information with our key audiences.
  • Staff Communications: Develop and distribute all-staff emails and help lead two all-staff calls annually, develop a robust internal communications strategy to build affiliation and pride among staff while consistently informing them of important information and context.
  • Organizational Updates: These are weekly videos that Tom Torkelson, IDEA's Founder & CEO, sends to all staff and supporters. The topics are planned by Tom and his Chief of Staff. The communications team coordinates the calendar and taping of the videos, in partnership with the Chief of Staff, and develops Tom's prep docs.

  1. Event Programming: Support and manage your team to develop best-in-class programming, remarks and speeches, and memorable event experiences for IDEA's Team & Family.
  • Develop scripts, programming, oversee training and prep and help manage logistics and the run-of-show management for IDEA's signature and secondary events.
  • College Signing Day
  • Back to School Bash

  1. Family Communications: Support the management and oversight of national, regional, and campus-based Family Communications at IDEA, providing resources, guidance, and training to ensure families receive effective, timely and clear communications.
  • Family Communications Working Group: Help lead IDEA's family communications working group. Develop campus-level training, resources, best practices and oversight to help provide best-in-class parent communications via Parent Weeklies, Remind, and Campus Facebook pages.
  • Parent Weekly: Auditing for use, advising and training campuses on best practices and communications norms, managing the Smore platform for distribution.
  • Remind: Advising and training campuses on best practices and communications norms, sending centralized district-wide messages to families
  • Campus Facebook Pages: Advising and training campuses on best practices and communications norms, auditing campus pages for brand aligned content
  • Family Advisory Council: Manage the Internal Communications Manager in overseeing the Family Advisory Council (FAC). The FAC is a voluntary group comprised of four IDEA family members per campus across each IDEA region. The purpose of the FAC is to meet with members three times each year to discuss family engagement and communication and how to strengthen the IDEA Public Schools network. Serving on the FAC is a great opportunity to engage, inform, and empower families and school partnerships.

  1. Receptionists: Help manage the Internal Communications Manager in hiring, training and supporting IDEA's campus receptionists.
  • In partnership with campus operations and lead teams, conduct interviews and hiring for campus-based receptionists.
  • Provide ongoing training, guidance and resources to ensure receptionists have the tools and knowledge needed to provide best-in-class customer service in campus front offices.

  1. Publications: Serve as the editor-in-chief for IDEA's publications through project management and leading the research, planning, copy development, copy editing, business partner review, translation, and design of the following publications:
  • IMPACT Magazine – Winter & Spring Issues: A quarterly magazine with varying topics and highlights that is distributed to families and staff.
  • Persistence/Enrollment Publications
  • IDEA's Annual Report: An annual publication that highlights IDEA's financial and academic successes that is distributed to stakeholders.

  1. Public Relations: Manage direct reporters to meet media and public relations goals, nationally and across new and existing IDEA regions, focusing on increasing brand awareness of IDEA and telling impactful stories about IDEA's families, students, staff, and communities.
  • Manage PR and media relations across all IDEA regions and nationally, oversee and manage partnerships with PR firms, and serve as the liaison for IDEA's blog sponsorships and partnerships, meeting the outlined brand recognition through positive media coverage.
  • Represent IDEA in regional media opportunities, manage regional media events, and craft documents (press releases, media alerts, etc) for external distribution.
  • Oversee the external communications managers in the daily monitoring of media calls, requests, and inquiries
  • Oversee the external communications managers in the daily distribution of IDEA's media report
  • Oversee the external communications managers in the weekly distribution of IDEA's communications and media overview
  • Oversee the external communications manager in the daily updates to IDEA's newsroom
  • Manage the External Communications Managers in monitoring and responding daily to messages received via IDEA's general inquiry email address.

  1. Social Media: Serve as the editor-in-chief of content, strategy, and planning across IDEA's national, regional and campus social media channels, managing the Social Media Manager to results and meeting outlined social media engagement goals and metrics.
  • Serve as the editor-in-chief of content, strategy, and planning IDEA's "national" channels (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram) regional channels (Facebook) and IDEA's campus channels (Facebook for 96 schools)
  • Manage the Social Media Manager in monitoring and respond daily to messages, comments, and notifications for all of IDEA's national social media accounts
  • Provide campus-level resources, training, and best practices for managing campus social media pages
  • Develop and distribute a monthly social media newsletter for campus administrators on Facebook


  • Education: Bachelor's degree required, master's degree in applicable field preferred
  • Experience: 8+ years of full-time professional experience required; 2+ years of full-time people management required.

Valid Through: 2019-11-16