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Manager of Communications

Comox Valley School District 71

Job Description

Reporting to the Superintendent of Schools (CEO), the Manager of Communications provides advice and leadership to the senior leadership team and Board of Education to support effective communications between the school district and its community. This position is responsible for the school district’s Communications Plan, external and internal communications, media and community relations, school district website, social media presence, and engagement initiatives with stakeholders.
 
We are looking for a personable and collaborative leader with a proven expertise in communications to work closely with the CEO in supporting the goals of the Board’s Strategic Plan and the school district’s vision and mission. The successful applicant will be comfortable in a hands-on role by consistently striving to deliver exceptional services to our schools and community. Responsibilities will cover a wide range of issues requiring a high level of professionalism and interpersonal skills to effectively engage and work with a variety of stakeholders across a number of functional areas as well as a diverse groups of colleagues, staff, public, government agencies and the media.  
 
Duties and Responsibilities:
  • Works closely with school and district leaders to provide communication expertise and guidance to develop, implement and support an integrated and proactive approach to all communication efforts, including engagement strategies, within the school district.
  • Supports senior leaders and Board of Education in communications matters, ensuring district communications are informative and meeting the needs of our community.
  • Develops a proactive communications approach that is open, accurate and easy to understand.
  • Determines strategies and practices to enhance community engagement and works with senior leaders on planning and delivery of public consultation initiatives.
  • Manages, writes content for, and updates the school district website.
  • Manages social media accounts to increase community awareness of school district initiatives and news. Provides posts to social media sites and monitors for issues raised by the public that require follow-up.
  • Leads the school district in media relations, including writing and distributing press releases, working with media to ensure accuracy and key message delivery are achieved.
  • Keeps abreast of community news and trends and develops briefing materials to support senior leaders and Board of Education.
  • Provides a leadership role in preparing, editing and coordinating key publications and reports, including, but not limited to, the Board of Education newsletter and the Annual Report.
  • Coordinates the creation of communications materials, including but not limited to, newsletters, reports, fact sheets, FAQs, key messages, and issues management.
  • Researches and assists in writing speeches and other communications materials for the Board of Education, CEO and other members of the senior leadership team.
  • Manages the day-to-day operations of district communications.
  • Develops, and is accountable for, the communications budget.
  • Facilitates effective liaison between the school district, the media, community groups, external agencies and members of the public.  
  • Works with service providers related to communications functions, such as graphic designers, printers and distributors of materials.
  • Assists in the promotion and communication of school community events and celebrations, as well as public programs.
  • Promotes public education through the school district website, news media, social media and other appropriate means.
  • Performs other related duties as assigned by the Superintendent of Schools (CEO).
 

Qualifications

The successful applicant will possess:
  • University Degree or advanced diploma in communications, journalism, public relations or related fields with a minimum 5 years of experience working in a communications role, ideally in a public sector environment. (Note: An equivalent combination of education and experience may be considered).
  • Sound knowledge of current and trending issues in public education.   
  • Extensive knowledge of good communications principles and practices, particularly as they relate to strategic communications, issues management and media relations.
  • Excellent verbal and written communications skills, as well as presentation and facilitation skills.
  • Ability to write and create compelling communications materials.
  • Experience in website management and creation of engaging website content.
  • Demonstrated experience working with multiple digital communications platforms, including but not limited to: Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram.
  • Ability to develop and implement pro-active communication strategies.
  • Appreciation of the sensitivity of political issues affecting the school district when dealing with internal and external stakeholder, including the media and the public.
  • Ability to exercise discretion and sound judgement while under pressure and when handling crisis situations.
  • Ability to maintain confidentiality in all matters of a sensitive, political or controversial nature.
  • Ability to work independently in completing tasks and meeting deadlines, establishing priorities effectively, and initiating necessary tasks with minimal guidance.
  • Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with elected officials, outside agencies, local media, other employees and the public.
  • Ability to plan, coordinate and implement community engagement events as required.
  • A valid BC driver’s license and access to a reliable vehicle to use on the job.
  • Ability to work evenings and a flexible work schedule as needed.    
  • Exceptional integrity, reliability and commitment to continuous learning.  
  • Excellent interpersonal, organizational, conflict resolution, and collaboration skills; ability to develop effective relationships with stakeholders at all levels.
  • Proven ability to respond to others in a positive, non-adversarial, solutions-oriented approach.
  • Team player with the ability to lead by example while demonstrating a commitment to continuous improvement through best practices and strategic communications.
 
School District 71 (Comox Valley) is a positive, progressive and growing school district located on the east coast of Vancouver Island.  It is located on the unceded traditional territory of the K'ómoks First Nation.  Located within the Comox Valley is the City of Courtenay, the Town of Comox and the Village of Cumberland; each providing their own unique services and community cultures. The Comox Valley is a desirable place to live with great ocean beaches, golf, skiing, hiking, swimming and boating. In addition, the community has strong and vibrant arts and cultural programs.
 
As an inclusive learning community, we embrace diversity, foster relationships and empower all learners to have a positive impact on the world. We are the largest employer in the Comox Valley with 1700 employees and provide a comprehensive educational program to approximately 9,500 students from Strong Start to Grade 12 in 14 elementary schools, 2 elementary/middle schools, 3 secondary schools,
2 alternate schools which includes the Nala’atsi Indigenous Program, a distributed learning school as well as an International Student Program. The District’s annual operating budget is roughly $100 million.
 

How To Apply

To Apply:  
Qualified applicants are invited to apply in confidence by submitting a detailed resume with supporting documentation and three (3) professional references through www.makeafuture.ca/comox-valley.
 
This leadership position is exempt from union membership. It includes a competitive annual salary and a comprehensive benefits package.
 
The tentative start date of the position is October 1, 2021 or another mutually-agreed date.
 
The job posting will remain open until a suitable candidate is found. Applications received prior to 1:00 pm (Pacific Time) on Monday August 23rd, 2021 are assured careful consideration. Only short-listed applicants will be contacted. Candidates chosen for an interview will be asked to provide a portfolio with samples of work product.
 
The successful applicant will be subject to the terms of the Criminal Review Act.  No agencies please.
 
Thank you for your interest in School District 71 (Comox Valley)
 
An Equal Opportunity Employer

Comox Valley School District 71 Logo
Contact For This Position
Comox Valley School District 71
Job Location
Courtenay BC
Job Level & Type

Full-time
Listing To Be Posted Until
November 01, 2021
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