Program Manager, Academics
Who We Are
Bridge partners with governments, donors, and parents to ensure that every child has access to an education that develops her full potential and creates the foundation for prosperity for the country. We are dedicated to supporting teachers, empowering school leaders, and ensuring every child has the learning support needed to master the national syllabus and have the confidence to succeed in a competitive world. Each of our project or country teams are supported through expertise and programming from additional offices around the world, combining world-leading expertise in core design areas with locally resident leadership and execution. We leverage experts, data, and technology in order to support and scale every aspect of quality education delivery. Bridge managed and supported schools are technology enabled and data driven to ensure accountability in the classroom for both teachers’ performance and children’s learning.
The Bridge model delivers significant learning outcomes at large scale by combining technology and customized learning materials. At Bridge, we believe innovation and technology can transform learning. Our model – which uses technology to deliver thoroughly researched and carefully designed daily lesson guides to teachers in our academies – is proven to increase learning outcomes for children. We are a solutions-driven, implementation-focused organization, using design principles to work in varied and often highly constrained contexts to ensure learning outcomes and positive development for children. Working in regional and national scales is important to us, as empowering entire generations of children with core knowledge, skills, and confidence is what builds the foundation for a peaceful and prosperous future for us all.
Our mission is to provide our pupils with a life-changing education and we believe that every child should have a right to world-class education regardless of her family’s income. Core to our approach is the conviction that every child can learn, as long as the school she attends is committed to her development and puts her needs to learn at the forefront of all decisions. We have seen teachers and children transform and excel in both government and private schools that we support and manage.
We invite you to join this incredible endeavor that is having world-changing impact across multiple continents. You will join a team of dedicated change-makers committed to ensuring that each decision we make keeps a child’s experience of learning as its guiding principle.
The education crisis is one that requires urgent, collective, and concrete action to surmount. While Nigeria is said to have the largest number of out of school children in the world, the education crisis is not just about out of school children, but also about children who are in school and not learning. In Sub Saharan Africa, statistics say that 88% or almost 9 out of 10 children and adolescents will not be able to read proficiently by the time they are of age to complete primary and lower secondary Education. With Nigeria being the most populous country in Sub Saharan Africa, this crisis impacts us most.
Bridge started operations in Nigeria in 2015, opening its affordable private nursery and primary schools targeted at providing life changing education for families living in low-income areas of Lagos State in parts of Ikorodu, Alimosho, Badagry, Ojo, Epe, and other local government areas. In 2017, Bridge further expanded its reach to the most marginalized and vulnerable communities by partnering with the Nigeria Stock Exchange (NSE) and the State of Borno to set up a public school serving out-of-school children and children from internally displaced communities. In 2018, Bridge became technical partners to the Edo State government in its implementation of the Edo State Basic Education Sector Transformation program to reform its public primary and nursery school system.
Today, Bridge works with both communities and governments to ensure hundreds of thousands of children have access to either a well-run, high achieving affordable private or free public school so that the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 4 of Quality Education becomes a reality for the millions of children in Nigeria quickly. You will join a group of Nigerians taking concrete action to help address the education crisis in Nigeria and ensure a better future for the children of Nigeria.
The objective of the Academics group is to drive student achievement. To do so, we must know -- what is happening minute-by-minute for the typical child? The student’s daily experience, and thus the path to achievement, emerges from their relationship with the teachers and the content that is delivered in the classroom; thus, our team is collaboratively organised around these levers. We develop rigorous content pitched at the right level for students to be delivered by a teacher who is prepared to use them in the classroom. Our Instructional Design department builds the content; our Leadership & Development department trains teachers and school leaders using scientifically-proven techniques; our Learning Innovation department looks at cutting-edge research to generate breakthrough learning gains. Underpinning all of this is the work of the independent Measurement and Evaluation group, which provides Academics with an empirical orientation toward improving that daily experience and, in turn, driving achievement.
About the Role
The Programme Manager, Academics will be ultimately responsible for optimizing the Primary School to Secondary School transition for every single Bridge pupil in their assigned territory.
As an individual contributor, the Programme Manager, Academic will ensure that our pupils - all of our pupils - are ready to take the high stake exams. This will include the implementation of individual and class level initiatives throughout the academic year aimed at preparing pupils for high stake exams.
As a collaborator, the Programme Manager, Academic will be responsible in coordinating with Schools and Partnership team Secondary School transition for all pupils. This will involve scouting for Secondary School scholarships from both Corporate and Non-governmental organisations, providing guidance to eligible pupils on the application and admission process and tracking the scholarship pupils throughout secondary school.
Finally, as a Programme Manager, Academic will ensure that all project trackers for individual and class level initiatives for preparing pupils for high stake exams are updated as well as Secondary school scholarship trackers.
What You Will Do
● Become an expert on the High Stake Exams - devour every exam and how it connects to the National Syllabus
● Become an expert on High Stake Exam Preparedness: Conducting lesson observations in the high stake class, working with Innovations team in running experiments aimed at improving pupils achievement in high stake exams, working with L&D team in professional development for teachers preparing pupils for high stake exams.
● Become an expert on the Secondary School Admissions process in assigned territory aligned to the National curriculum in place.
● Scouting for Secondary Scholarships and Tracking Scholarship pupils throughout Secondary School:
● Think “Beyond High Stake Exams”- how are we setting up ALL pupils for success beyond Primary
● Seek Leverage - Identify and Develop plans for implementing the highest impact initiatives and programs that drive performance on High Stake Exams
● Execute Well - Oversee the planning of large-scale programming for High-Stakes Assessments across territory assigned.
● Collaborate effectively with other Bridge teams - Operations, People, Schools
● Collaborate effectively with external partners
What You Should Have
The Programme Manager must be a data-driven individual with experience in High Stake Exams. You must be an expert in Secondary School Admissions who understands exceptional beyond High Stake Exams and can motivate and support pupils in excelling. Ideal candidates have worked in organizations with a proven track record of generating High Stakes Exams performance.
In addition, the Programme Manager must:
● Be a self-starter and problem-solver.
● Be hard working and collaborative, with the tenacity to plow through challenges and an appreciation for teamwork toward achieving a shared vision.
● Be a fast learner and someone who is able to flourish in fast paced, dynamic, and sometimes ambiguous environments
● Be both detailed and results-oriented, driven by the data that will allow us to know what is working and what isn’t working for kids.
● Have strong project management skills and excellent organizational skills, with keen attention to detail and ability to follow up systematically on a broad set of initiatives and decisions
● Be an effective, articulate communicator who can represent Bridge to external audiences.
● Be humble and ready to “roll up your sleeves” to get things done
Education and Qualification
● Bachelor’s Degree required
● Minimum of three years of teaching experience with proven track record of achieving high
academic outcomes with pupils on high-stakes assessment.
● Experience in a variety of International Contexts (particularly the ones in which Bridge operates) strongly preferred
● Some Management Experience preferred
● A detailed doer – You have a track record of getting things done. You’re organized and responsive. You take ownership of every idea you touch and execute it to a fine level of detail, setting targets, engaging others, and doing whatever it takes to get the job done. You can multi-task dozens of such projects at once and never lose sight of the details. Likely, you have some experience in a start-up or other rapid-growth company.
● A creative problem-solver – Growing any business from scratch comes with massive and constant challenges. On top of that, Bridge works in often fragile, sometimes volatile low-resource communities and with complex government systems. You need to be flexible and ready to get everything done effectively, quickly, and affordably with the materials at hand.
● A relentless advocate – The children we serve and teachers we empower never leave your mind. You know them, get them, have shared a meal with them (or would be happy to in the future). You would never shrink back from shaking a parent’s hand or picking up a crying child, no matter what the person was wearing or looked like. Every decision you make considers their benefit, experience, and value.
● A malleable learner – You believe you can always do better. You welcome constructive criticism and provide it freely to others. You know you only get better tomorrow when others point out where you’ve missed things or failed today.
● A data-driven decision-maker – When making decisions, you don’t rely your intuition alone. You collect data, you analyze it and make decisions with clear justifications.
● A curious investigator – You ask why a lot. You don’t just take what you see and accept it. You wonder why it is that way, and are aware that the world we see is created by human choices and actions – and it could be different. You wonder, and see the world as wonderful even when you want to change a part of it that is unjust.