The Project Director/Chief of Party is responsible for the overall project management, supervision, administration, implementation and advocacy of the “Reading Enhancement for Advancing Development Activity (READ)” project in Bangladesh. The project is funded by USAID valued between $ 20 M - $ 21 M for a period of four and half years. S/he will provide strategic and operational leadership to develop, implement, monitor, evaluate and influence improvement of Bangladeshi children’s reading skills within their first three years of primary schooling through instruction, increased supplementary reading materials, facilitation of community engagement in early grade reading and providing teachers with a standardized reading diagnostic tool. S/he will liaise closely with relevant ministries of the Government of Bangladesh, USAID, community leaders, civil society, schools, districts, business partners, and other USG agencies.
Essential Duties, Responsibilities and Impact
- Represent Save the Children and the project in formal and informal relationships with USAID, partners, government authorities and other stakeholders, as appropriate.
- Serve as a technical leader on early grade literacy/reading and build staff capacity in reading and research.
- Lead the preparation of annual work plans and oversee the production and dissemination of accurate and timely reports as well as other deliverables to the donor, such as project success stories and project briefs.
- Supervise project planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation in a manner consistent with Save the Children’s working principles.
- Implement appropriate and meaningful approaches to address gender, girl’s and women’s empowerment, as well as constructive engagement of men in Bangladeshi context.
- Ensure representatives and leaders at the national, directorate, and community levels are informed of program progress and best practices.
- Work with national and local partners to assist in the implementation of the project.
- Ensure that efficient systems are in place to support all aspects of project activity, including sub- grantee and grant management and project monitoring and evaluation, and that they support the effective use of project resources in compliance with USAID regulations
- Ensure that financial systems support Save the Children’s accountability to USAID and that financial reports are timely and complete.
- Supervise key and non-key personnel of the project, including external technical consultants.
- Coordinate and supervise studies to produce research evidence on reading.
- Provide leadership to advocacy work with relevant stakeholders, particularly with government – its various agencies and ministries
- Offer technical leadership to develop proposals in response to any call from USAID on reading.
- Model strong leadership behavior in line with Save the Children’s gender & inclusion strategy
- Focuses on knowledge management and evidence generation and can align them with policy engagement & project sustainability
Required Background and Experience, Skills and Behaviors
- Master’s Degree in Education preferred or in a related field, with a preference for PhD level education qualifications and specialized training in reading.
- Minimum of seven years of professional experience in the implementation of education projects at the COP level.
- Proven experience in a leadership role and management of education programming, including managing budgets and personnel, motivating and supervising team efforts and achieving success in complex, demanding environments.
- Experience in building organizational capacity and programming activities relative to reading, primary education and development through both formal and non-formal approaches and possessing strong professional credibility within this fi eld.
- Proven expertise in building and maintaining relationships with governm e nt co u nterparts at the central and local levels as well as with partners and beneficiaries.
- Exp erie n ce in managing USG funding and familiarity with donor rules and regulations.
- Experience in monitoring and evaluation of educational programs.
- Strong understanding and knowledge of evidence-based and promising reading models and best practices in improving and institutionalizing quality reading programs within public education systems in low resource contexts
- Knowledge and familiarity with Bangladesh education context; regional experience is preferable
- Excellent interpersonal skills and the demonstrated a bility to lead and work effectively in team situations to achieve desired results.
- Excellent oral and written communication skills in English are required.
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