Chief Academic Officer

Partnership for Los Angeles Schools




Teaching / Instruction


CA - Greater Los Angeles Area

About the Organization

Launched in 2007, the Partnership for Los Angeles Schools (the Partnership) is one of the largest in-district public school transformation organizations in the United States, committed to transforming outcomes in the highest need public schools. Leveraging insights from its own work – managing a network of 20 district schools collectively serving 13,550 students across Boyle Heights, South LA, and Watts – the Partnership works within and alongside Los Angeles Unified School District (LA Unified) to find and share solutions that influence broader systemic change.

Since its inception, the Partnership has dramatically improved outcomes within the schools it serves in critical areas such as graduation rates, moving from a baseline of 36% in 2008 to 89% in 2023, and college acceptance rates, with 85% of seniors in the Partnership's five high schools planning to attend a four or two year college this year. In addition, the Partnership influences both policy and practice. For instance, in 2018, through advocacy with partners, the Partnership was instrumental in helping secure approval from LA Unified's Board of Education for a revised Student Equity Need Index (SENI), which has since resulted in a 40-fold growth in equitable funding and a recent distribution of $700MM to highest need schools. The Partnership also conceived the "Every Student Connected" broadband initiative, piloted during the pandemic and subsequently adopted and expanded by LA Unified as "All Families Connected".

Building on its record of success, the Partnership is poised to continue to transform schools to revolutionize school systems, empowering all students with a high-quality education.

To learn more, please visit:

About the Position

This is a unique opportunity for a proven, equity-driven leader to play a transformative role in Los Angeles by driving performance for the 20 Partnership schools and impacting LAUSD's systems and policies. Reporting to the CEO, the Chief Academic Officer (CAO) will guide a comprehensive education model that addresses key leadership, instructional, cultural, and policy issues to support schools. Managing a team of 5 direct reports and a total team of ~50, the CAO will have overall responsibility for driving academic improvement in schools and codifying learning in support of the roughly 60 school leaders and 250 teacher leaders within the Partnership, while using these successes as guidance to influence the larger district, as well as state and national dialogue on school and district transformation. As a key member of the Partnership leadership team, the CAO will also collaborate closely with the Chief Schools Officer, Chief Executive Officer, Chief External Officer, Chief People and Operations Officer, and Chief of Staff to drive broader organizational impact and success.

Responsibilities include but are not limited to:

Instructional Vision and Strategy

  • Build and implement an innovative transformation model that codifies instructional strategies and activities to ensure sustainable and systemic school improvement
  • Set the vision for instructional success across core areas such as literacy, math, and broader district influence on instructional practices; partner with the Chief Schools Officer and key colleagues to ensure this vision is realized
  • Build and implement a capacity-building model to support school transformation, ensuring all members of school leadership teams can fulfill their roles in serving students on their climb to college and career
  • Develop, implement, and evaluate a suite of instructional supports for all 20 school sites, ensuring supports build school site capacity through developing administrators and teacher leaders, with a focus on leadership conferences, institutes, and teacher leader pathways
  • Set the vision for Instructional Coaches and selection models for teacher leader roles; participate in key hiring committees where senior leadership is required
  • Collaborate with team members on advocacy opportunities that remove barriers to student success, in service of both maturing the Partnership's model and creating a model for LAUSD and other districts

Organizational and Team Leadership

  • Serve on the Executive Team, collaborating with colleagues to drive and support the Partnership's vision, mission, and goals
  • Manage and provide strong leadership to the academic and school supports team (i.e. Transform team), driving improved educational outcomes through this high-performing team of 5 leaders while also supporting their professional development and growth, and that of their teams
  • Champion equitable practices throughout the team and in schools by actively disrupting systemic racism and creating a culture of collaboration, inclusion, and belonging
  • Build and manage internal systems and team structures to continue monitoring and evolving the school transformation model in service of meeting network goals and individual team member goals, serving as a model for how districts can organize
  • Build a culture of psychological safety, collaboration, retention, personal and team growth, and service to schools
  • Develop and implement systems of ongoing performance management, both formal and informal, to assess instructional team members, hold them accountable, and provide differentiated support and continuous development

External Stakeholder Management and Influencing

  • Build and maintain relationships with key LAUSD staff, sharing best practices and scaling influence through fee-for-service, grant-funded, and systems-building initiatives
  • Collaborate closely with the Chief External Officer, elevating proof points and helping to remove obstacles that hinder transformation; assist in changing and influencing revisions to restrictive district policies and practices
  • Serve as a key spokesperson and participate in donor meetings, sharing the Partnership's story and instructional vision
  • Engage with community partners, funders, and media to enhance and share the work of the Partnership

Candidate Requirements:

Research shows that women and individuals from systemically marginalized communities are less likely to apply for jobs unless they meet all of the qualifications. While this job description outlines the major responsibilities and requirements to be successful in this role, the Partnership is committed to considering all applicants who are passionate about our mission and can see themselves excelling in this role – including those with diverse and non-traditional work experience.

  • 15+ years of professional experience with at least 5 years of senior management experience in a high-performing organization
  • A deep belief in the power of our communities, as well as the Partnership's mission, approach, and core values
  • A track record of effectively leading a team of 10+, with experience managing managers; a track record of developing strong and engaged performers and coaching others on how to motivate and inspire teams
  • A commitment to fostering a diverse, equitable, and inclusive work environment for all team members
  • A willingness to learn, grow, and model the Partnership competencies: Anti-racism, root cause analysis, long-term thinking, teaming and collaboration, psychological safety, and learning and growth
  • A commitment to high expectations and accountability for all members of the Partnership and self
  • A proven record of academic success working with students in historically underserved schools and setting high expectations for teachers and students
  • A track record of success in driving student achievement in a secondary or elementary school as a principal or other administrative role, including experience leading school turnaround efforts
  • A strong understanding of K-12 curriculum and programming, including deep knowledge of the Common Core standards and high quality instructional materials, curriculum, assessments, and effective instructional pedagogy
  • Familiarity with Smarter Balanced Assessments, high quality instructional materials and general assessment systems, and assessing core-content progress toward mastery
  • Strong strategic thinking skills with an ability to toggle between theory and practice and to execute in partnership with a high performing team of senior leaders; significant experience using data to drive student achievement in a school and district setting
  • A bold approach to considering creative alternatives to traditional solutions and a track record of driving innovation
  • Excellent communication skills, both oral and written, with an ability to deliver messages in a clear and succinct manner to a variety of audiences
  • Masters degree or advanced degree in education or a relevant field preferred
  • Experience working in education in the LA region a plus
  • Proficient in Spanish preferred

Location: Los Angeles, California; opportunity to work in a hybrid position with required work occurring in schools, partner spaces, in the Partnership's home office, and remotely.

Covid-19 Vaccination Requirement: Partnership for LA Schools is a contractor with Los Angeles Unified School District and has implemented a Mandatory COVID-19 Vaccine Policy. All new employees are required to be fully vaccinated a week before their start date unless they are approved for an accommodation due to a medical reason or because of a sincerely held religious belief.

Compensation and benefits:

The salary for this position is $201,250. The Partnership's commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion extends to our compensation practices. Our goal is to ensure that salaries are fair for all staff members who hold many intersectional identities, and we set salaries based on a robust compensation model grounded in consistency and transparency.

The Partnership also offers a robust benefits package including employer-paid health, dental, and vision insurance for employees and their dependents; a 403(b) retirement program with employee match and vesting; parental and sabbatical leaves; a professional development allowance; and generous paid time off. Details can be found here.

Partnership for Los Angeles Schools is an equal opportunity employer that is committed to – and actively pursues – diversity, equity, and inclusion in the workplace. The Partnership prohibits discrimination based on race (including traits historically associated with race such as hairstyle), creed, color, religion, registered domestic partner status, national origin, ancestry, sex, gender, gender expression, gender identity, sexual orientation, marital status, citizenship status, age, military and veteran status, medical condition, genetic information, political affiliation, pregnancy or childbirth, physical disability or mental disability, or any other basis protected by federal, state, or local law or ordinance or regulation. The Partnership also prohibits discrimination based on the perception that anyone has any of these characteristics, or is associated with a person who has or is perceived as having any of those characteristics.

On-Ramps is deeply committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion. We believe social change happens when people with a wide range of backgrounds, experiences, and identities come together with a common purpose. We're partnering with the team at the Partnership to build a diverse team. We encourage candidates from all backgrounds to apply.

On-Ramps and the Partnership for Los Angeles Schools are committed to the inclusion of all qualified individuals in the hiring process, including but not limited to those with disabilities. If you require reasonable accommodation(s) to participate in the application or interview process, please contact