The START-Engaging Parents of Students with Disabilities (EPSD) Project has an opening for a part-time Parent Group Specialist (PGS): Regional Associate, North—East Bergen, Essex (charter schools only) and Sussex Counties.

SPAN Parent Advocacy Network is currently looking for an independent, self-motivated individual who is the parent/caregiver of a child receiving special education services and/or who has experience as a member/leader of a local parent group. The qualified individual will have a strong commitment to the importance and significance of the involvement of empowered and educated parents/caregivers in improving academic and health outcomes for children in New Jersey through development of parent groups and participation in strong family/school partnerships.


Job Responsibilities:

The Parent Group Specialist should be a resident of a county in the region they cover and have experience working with their local district Special Education Parent Advisory Group (SEPAG), and parent and community organizations in this region.

The PGS provides information, training, technical assistance and support to parents and professionals regarding:

  1. Establishing parent groups
  2. Maintaining the membership and effectiveness of existing groups
  3. Informing parents about their rights to be involved in educational planning for their child
  4. Providing training and workshops on parent involvement in the IEP process and additional topics as needed
  5. Increasing parental awareness regarding families’ role in improving special education systems within their district and at the state level through parent professional collaboration
  6. Identifying parent groups, networks, and/or formal organizations (PTAs/PTOs/HSAs, etc.) currently supporting or interested in supporting families with children with special education needs
  7. Doing outreach to identified groups/networks/organizations to determine what resources or information may be needed to sustain their development
  8. Networking with families, educators, and service providers as well as attending conferences and trainings in their counties, regions, and throughout the state regarding family-centered principles and practices

Qualifications:

The successful candidate, through experience, as well as training, will demonstrate the following knowledge, abilities, and skills:

Required

  • Excellent planning, organizational and interpersonal skills
  • Excellent outreach, family engagement and empowerment, and ability to partner with NJ-OSEP partners, district personnel and other professionals
  • Good verbal and written communication skills
  • Proficiency working with Microsoft Word, Power Point and Excel software, Internet, and Social Media, as well as emerging cloud technology and mobile apps
  • Experience as the parent/caregiver or advocate of a child with disabilities and experience as the leader of a special education parent advisory group, parent organization or support group
  • Outstanding ability to work well with a wide spectrum of people
  • Ability to work well independently as well as with a team
  • Capacity to exercise independent judgment and sound decision-making
  • Demonstrated commitment to the goals of the project and organization
  • Ability to work flexible hours
  • Reliable transportation

Preferred

Bilingual English/Spanish highly desirable

Reports to:

START-EPSD Project Co-Director

Hours:

18.75

Submit your resume and a cover letter indicating your interest to Tatsiana DaGrosa: tdagrosa@spanadvocacy.org.

SPAN is an equal employment opportunity employer.

SPAN is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to empower families and inform and involve professionals and other individuals interested in the healthy development and educational rights of children. SPAN is funded through private contributions and grants from government, foundations, corporations and individuals.

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