Massachusetts Advocates for Children (MAC) is an advocacy and direct service nonprofit organization dedicated to removing barriers to educational and life opportunities for children and youth. Based in Boston for over 50 years, we advocate to improve educational opportunities for all children and youth, while also helping one family at a time.
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Since 2016, MAC has been engaged in an organization-wide Racial Equity Initiative designed to make us better equipped to identify, name and respond to the effects of structural and other forms of racism within our organization and educational systems. This has required an ongoing and deep transformation in the organization’s external programs and internal policies and practices, as well as in the composition of its board and staff leadership.
Over the past year, newcomer families have migrated to Massachusetts in significant numbers. The majority are from Haiti and South and Central America and face barriers to accessing basic services due to language barriers, immigration status, and/or poverty and homelessness. Many have children who are school aged and younger and require additional support navigating the unfamiliar educational system in the US. This position will be focused on increasing access to education for newcomer families and students at the individual student and systemic levels through outreach, training, and advocacy.
We will consider applicants who are licensed attorneys and/or who have other skills, qualifications, and knowledge that will enable them to effectively engage with community partners and families and advocate for and with newcomer families in education related matters.
Essential Duties and Responsibilities
MAC seeks a committed person to join our team on a full-time basis as an entry level education attorney or as an education advocate.
Advocacy and other responsibilities will include:
- Conducting outreach to immigrant serving organizations providing direct services to newcomer families;
- Direct advocacy with school districts on behalf of individual families;
- Responding to inquiries to MAC’s Helpline related to the education needs of newcomer families;
- Developing and conducting legal advocacy workshops on education rights in the US for parents and professionals;
- Participating in coalitions organized to address the cross-disciplinary needs of newcomer families and other coalitions as relevant to the role;
- Contributing to grant reports and supporting other development efforts related to this work; and
- Participating in parent organizing and other systemic advocacy undertaken by MAC and our statewide coalition partners.
Qualifications and Skills
We appreciate and value that a wide variety of life and work experiences could prepare someone for this role. We also recognize that people from historically marginalized communities may not apply for positions if they do not have every qualification. We encourage anyone who believes they would be a good fit to apply!
- Commitment to social justice and belief in MAC’s mission.
- J.D. and license to practice law in Massachusetts preferred but not required; applicants with relevant advocacy experience and additional skills (for example language skills) especially relevant to the position are encouraged to apply;
- Knowledge of special education law, student discipline, and/or familiarity with inequities in public education;
- Strong communication skills, compassion, creativity, and persistence;
- Strong research, writing, and analytical skills;
- Demonstrated commitment to advancing racial equity;
- Ability to work independently and collaboratively as part of a team;
- Ability to work flexible hours, understanding that some evening and weekend work is anticipated;
- Fluency in Haitian Creole, Portuguese, and/or Spanish, in addition to English, preferred.
Salary and benefits
The salary range for this position is $55,000-$70,000 commensurate with experience and qualifications. The salary range is intentionally broad to account for anticipated diversity in advocacy experience and educational background in the applicant pool. MAC offers a flexible, family-friendly culture and generous benefits including health insurance and paid time off. This is a full-time position in our hybrid office (staff currently work in the office two days per week). It is a 1-year grant-funded position, although MAC is fully committed to seeking additional funding to maintain the position and the person in this role may contribute to these efforts.
- Send a cover letter and resume to email@example.com with “Education Attorney or Advocate” in the subject line. Applications missing a cover letter or resume will not be considered.
- This is a rolling hiring process with priority given to complete applications received by December 8, 2023.
MAC is an Equal Opportunity employer. Our team is built with an intentional commitment to equity and representation. We celebrate diversity and strive to dismantle dominant cultural systems of workplace requirements and restrictive hiring practices. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, veteran status, marital status, or sexual orientation, in accordance with federal and state law.