Chief Program Officer

Childhood Education International
  • Location
    Washington, D.C.
  • Sector
    Non Profit
  • Experience
    Mid Career
  • Posted
    Jan 07

Position description

The Chief Program Officer (CPO) will lead an ambitious effort to advance CE International’s mission through its delivery of quality programs. The CPO is a key member of CE International’s Executive Leadership Team and as such will play a key role in the overall development of the organization and in strategic planning. S/he is responsible for overseeing all program development and program operations under the direction of the Chief Executive Officer (CEO).


The CPO will oversee the organization’s portfolio of programs and related services; evaluate their effectiveness of programs and seek relationships with new partners to develop unique and innovative programs. An important role of the CPO is to support the financial sustainability of CE International through effective resource stewardship and diversification of funding. The CPO will work in partnership with the Chief Business Officer (CBO) to ensure a balance of government funding, fees for service and philanthropic support. The CPO will also engage in proposal writing and grant submission in collaboration with the CBO. It is critical that the CPO stay continually abreast of developments in global education, human development, teaching and learning and changes and trends occurring in related sectors such as health including relevant global initiatives.


To be successful in this role, the CPO must be a self-motivated, results oriented, a team player, and able to thrive in a continually evolving environment. The ability to be flexible, proactive and resourceful is essential as well as exhibiting a high level of professionalism and energy to help to shape a growing organization. A desire to help CE International become a leading professional services organization is essential as this is a unique position that offers an opportunity to help to grow and expand an international organization.


Main Responsibilities:

Program Development and Oversight

  • Design and develop programs and services that meet the mission of CE International and provide significant positive impact for children’s education.
  • Coordinate with the CEO and CBO on developing new programs, projects and initiatives.
  • Create and support a high performing culture that encourages the creation of quality products and services using strategic development steps and processes while meeting time bound delivery deadlines.
  • Supervise program staff providing guidance and mentorship on how to proactively bid on projects, design and develop services, and engage in project management, implementation and improvement.
  • Deploy resources efficiently and effectively toward organizational goals and provide regular feedback so that key staff can continuously improve their skills.
  • Determine staffing plans to achieve program goals and objectives. Identify and participate in the recruitment of talent. At times, hiring may have to be done expediently to meet contracting requirements.
  • Ensure that the expectations of funders, partners, clients, and other stakeholders are consistently met.
  • Establish annual program, departmental and staff professional development goals and objectives and track results against these goals as well as accountability protocols.
  • Develop an assessment protocol to determine the feasibility of new projects and services, and sustainability for programs.
  • Analyze and assess programs based on data collected and implement corrective measures, if required. Ensure the delivery of qualitative and quantitative goals and outcomes of programs.
  • Coordinate and analyze the appropriate data to inform the programmatic and operational decision-making process. Use the existing platforms such as the CRM and LMS.


Capture Planning and Financial Sustainability

  • Work closely with the finance department to budget and monitor programmatic operations to ensure sound fiscal and system management.
  • Respond to funding opportunities in partnership with the CBO; including developing technical and cost proposals as required.
  • Participate in the organization’s annual budget development process and maintain a high level of fiscal responsibility.
  • Support fund development efforts through capture planning, proposal writing and partnering with the CBO and CEO to steward donor and funder relationships.


Outreach and Environmental Scanning

  • Represent CE International, as designated by CEO, on relevant committees and task forces, as well as at speaking engagements, conference panels and trainings.
  • Monitor emerging needs, trends and issues among key stakeholder groups such as teachers, NGO leaders, government ministries and philanthropic organizations.
  • Ability to scan the education environment and related sectors to research and locate innovative programs that support child development and learning and then share these practices internationally.


Profile of the Ideal Candidate

The Chief Program Officer must be self- starter who is ready to engage with CE International to meet its mission and its goals for organizational growth and sustainability. S/he must display a demonstrated commitment to children’s education and well-being, and have direct experience implementing education programs, especially those related to current global education movements and initiatives such as the Sustainable Development Goals- Goal 4.

The CPO will have experience responding to RFP’s and writing grant proposals, and experience developing and delivering education programs internationally. The ideal candidate will have the ability to use project management tools and approaches to guide and track program development and implementation. The CPO should have experience participating in, and acquiring, government funded education projects. (Examples: USAID, DFID, AusAid, etc.)

S/he will possess a desire for achieving outcomes in collaboration with others, possess a results-oriented approach and be able to propose ways to innovate and continuously improve the organization’s programs and services. The CPO will engage with their network of individuals and organizations for program opportunities.


  • 7 years plus working experience in program development or related field
  • Masters level qualification in relevant field such as education policy, global education, international development;
  • Ability to lead program design and development;
  • Grant writing and proposal development experience;
  • Experience with contracting and grant acquisition and oversight;
  • Ability to quickly understand and absorb cutting edge education topics, issues and needs of the education sector;
  • Experience writing articles, briefs and reports on education topics;
  • Ability to deliver oral presentations and trainings to diverse, global audiences;
  • Excellent team player and facilitator;
  • Must be able to travel internationally, on a limited basis, as required;
  • Excellent command of written and spoken English.


Ability to speak Spanish, French or other languages a plus, but not required.


Work Environment:

This position is performed in an open office environment. There is also a telework schedule available.



Salary for this position is based on level of experience and career achievements, however, it will not exceed $128,000. Please state your salary requirements or salary range in the cover letter. 


Physical Demands

While performing the duties of this job, the employee is occasionally required to stand; walk; sit; use hands to fingers, handle or feel objects, tools, or controls; use fingers and hands to type or write; reach with hands and arms; or talk or hear. Specific vision abilities required by the job include close vision; distance vision; color vision; peripheral vision, depth perception, and the ability to adjust focus.


Childhood Education International is an Equal Opportunity Employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, gender, ethnicity, sexual or gender orientation, religion or physical ability. 


Benefits offered include a 403b retirement plan, paid holidays and sick leave. 

Application instructions

To apply, email cover letter and include salary requirements or salary range and resume to [email protected] Only those being considered for the position will be contacted. No phone calls, please. 

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