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Ethiopia: Thematic Director- Education and Early Child Care & Development (ECCD) - Readvertisement Job Vacancy in Ethiopia

Organization: Save the Children
Country: Ethiopia
Closing date: 12 Jul 2018


The Education Thematic Director is responsible for leading SC Ethiopia’s Education and Early Child Care & Development (ECCD) thematic sector covering basic education, emergency education, and early ECCD. This includes developing multi-year thematic strategies and annual plans, designing and building programmes and securing the grants, developing strong external relations, ensuring program quality, producing and utilising high quality and well-articulated project evidence and research for learning, for advocacy and for the continued development of the Education and ECCD portfolio.

The Thematic Director is also responsible for promoting programme quality via a team of technical advisors and supporting operational teams. S/he will ensure cross functionality, coordination, standardization of program implementation in different projects, and that quality of program are of nationally/internationally accepted and recommended standards. He/she represents SC values and principles in interactions with staff and external audiences. These values and principles include commitment to the mission of Save the Children, team orientation, quality management and leadership development, introducing systems and procedures to strengthen staff motivation and productivity.


Reports to: Deputy Country Director, Program Development and Quality

Dimensions: Save the Children works in 9 regions in Ethiopia with a current staff complement of approximately 1,700 staff and current expenditure of approximately $90+ million each year.

Staff directly reporting to this post: 4-5 direct reports


In line with SCI’s dual mandate, these key areas of accountability apply to SCI Ethiopia’s work in emergencies (acute and chronic) and in development settings.

Strategic Programme Development

· Provide overall leadership for the strategic development and quality implementation of the Education and ECCD programme, including development of strategic plans and the portfolio of projects, research and initiatives required to achieve of strategic objectives and outcomes.

· In close coordination with programme operations and partnership team, identify potential education and ECCD sector partner organizations and make sure that selection of new partners is in accordance to SCI's partnership guidelines.

· Lead the annual thematic planning, and regular internal programme planning and review meetings for the education and ECCD teams, as well as related inputs to quarterly and annual reports.

· Ensure that program achievements against agreed strategic objectives and milestones for a wide range of internal and external audiences are developed and communicated.

· Actively communicate and coordinate other thematic sectors, relevant technical advisors and project managers/directors to ensure integrations and synergy across themes.

· Serve as the thematic focal point for regular liaison and communication with relevant SCI and member technical advisor staff. Identify technical support requirements, inclusive of field visits, as and when necessary.

· Serve as the senior thematic lead for all relevant external representation requirements.

Strategic Fundraising and Program Development

· Support strategic fundraising to the sector. This includes funding for projects, research and advocacy to support policy change objectives.

· Analyze donor priorities and positions on issues related to the sector and advise senior management on possible actions.

· Develop and maintain contacts with current and potential donors, partners and key technical agencies.

· In collaboration with business/fundraising colleagues, identify institutional and other funding opportunities.

· Build relations and understanding of account management processes and support from each SC Member.

· Contribute to the development and regular updating of an SCI Ethiopia fundraising plan.

· Build on technical knowledge, research and current/previous programming to lead development of proposals in close coordination with operations and business development teams. This includes all aspects of proposal development, such as concept notes, grant amendments, etc.

Policy Analysis, Policy Engagement and Advocacy for Policy Change

· Oversee the development and quality of Save the Children’s Education and ECCD work.

· Work closely with advocacy team of the organisation to drive and influence policies, priorities and funding decisions of donors, government and others.

· Works together with Communication team to produce and disseminate high quality regular policy briefs.

· Lead in networking and articulating SC’s position, policy and strategy in national forums and meetings with regard to the sector.

· Keep abreast of national and global debate in the sector, analysis trends/developments and share with senior staff and management.

· Represent Save the Children in relevant working groups, task forces, seminars and related fora in the thematic area; and among donors, UN agencies, International NGOs, and national and sub-national government counterparts.

Programme Quality and Effectiveness

· Ensure the adaptation, implementation and institutionalization of SC’s Education and ECCD Common Approaches within SCI and partners.

· Ensure the development and application of sectoral quality assurance standards/benchmarks, tools etc. across the programs and research initiatives of the CO

· Ensure quality of projects are attained at delivery level by working closely staff involved in implementation through provision of continuous capacity improvement measures and rolling out of relevant quality benchmark tools/processes

· Work closely with Program Operations teams to support quality implementation including incorporation of recommendations for technical improvements.

· Conduct regular field visits to provide support to quality assurance initiatives in the field

· Work closely with MEAL in developing a robust evidence-based learning to support program implementation, development and advocacy; and insuring that lessons learned and good practices are properly documented, effectively disseminated and, where appropriate, incorporated into wider advocacy initiatives.

· Work closely with the MEAL team to ensure quality benchmarking is in place for program implementation and all evaluations are conducted at a high level of quality.

· Work with MEAL to ensure dissemination of learning and knowledge to sectoral, PDQ and relevant Program Operations and partner staff through the active use of Communities of Practices

· Develop and implement effective strategies to integrate resources and lessons of large stand-alone projects in the thematic area; support cross-fertilization of good practices.

· Understand cross-cutting issues of resilience, gender, child participation, and others to ensure their incorporation into program design and implementation.

· Support Program Operations and Awards in submitting quality donor reports by providing timely and thorough technical review of such reports including recommendations on how these reports could be improved.

· Ensure all technically managed to a high standard. Technical managers in Programme Operations will have dotted lines to the PDQ thematic teams so that they receive strategic guidance, technical oversight and support. Work closely with these implementing teams to support projects throughout the project cycle.

Staff and Budget Management

· Lead and manage the Education and ECCD teams.

· Provide ‘dashed-line’ technical leadership for all Education and ECCD Program technical staff in Ethiopia.

· Ensure the ‘right-sizing’ of the Education and ECCD team structurally.

· Coaches, mentors and provides structured training as necessary to team members.

· Develop and manage budgets for staff of the Education and ECCD team, advocacy, consultancies and research, as required.

· Conduct regular, comprehensive performance management. This includes work plans and performance reviews and support of staff learning and development.

· Identify succession plans and team members with high capacity for future promotion


· Post graduate level education or extensive experience in relevant field.

· A minimum of 12 years senior level experience in a development environment working on Education and ECCD programs, including significant field experience with both emergency and development programs.

· Strong technical experience managing Education and ECCD activities in NGO, bilateral or multilateral agencies.

· Experience managing a portfolio of multiple projects, including research.

· Successful track record in designing and writing proposals for funding and in developing donor relationships

· Proven representation, influencing and advocacy skills and experience.

· Strong analytical and writing skills with demonstrated ability to write briefing papers (ability to present complex information in a succinct and compelling manner) and reports.

· Proven ability to manage a networked team of professionals, with good communication and interpersonal skills and an ability to motivate staff. Highly developed interpersonal and communication skills including influencing, negotiation and coaching

· Experience in humanitarian assistance and disaster risk reduction.

· Experience working with government partners, with partner agencies, including local partners, and in consortia and relevant to resilience programming.

· An understanding of child rights programming and commitment to Save the Children values.

· Highly developed cultural awareness and ability to work well in an international environment with people from diverse backgrounds and cultures

· Strong results orientation, with the ability to challenge existing mind-sets

· Proven ability to manage a complex and demanding workload

· Excellent spoken and written English

· Good computer skills (particularly Excel, Word and database)

· Qualified female candidates are highly encouraged to apply

How to apply:


Interested applicants who meet the MINIMUM requirements should send the following through on or before July 12, 2018

a. A CV (not more than 3 pages)

b. A cover letter (not more than one page)

c. A one-page table summarizing your educational background, work experience, technical skills and competencies to facilitate the screening process. Refer the vacancy announcement while doing this.

Please DO NOT SUBMIT copies of transcripts, academic degrees or recommendation letters with the application. You will provide them upon request.


Save the Children is committed to ensuring that all our personnel and programmes are absolutely safe for children. We undertake rigorous procedures during the recruitment process including background checks to ensure that only people suitable to work with children are allowed to join our organisation and all candidates will therefore be subject to this scrutiny.

In the selection of its staff, Save the Children is committed to gender balance and diversity without distinction as to race, sex or religion, and without discrimination of persons with disabilities.

Note: All travel costs should be covered by the applicant if invited for written exam or interview.

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