Special Assignment At Work



Provides leadership for district literacy programming and in the research, design, development and delivery of relevant curriculum, instruction and assessment district-wide.



  • Provides leadership in program design, development and coordination.
  • Coordinates/facilitates licensed work teams.
  • Reviews and evaluates instructional and/or operational programs, materials and research based practices.
  • Supports the implementation of district curriculum materials and research-based instructional and assessment practices.
  • Represents the director as requested for selected functions and professional tasks within and outside the district.
  • Advises the director in matters of program management and planning.
  • Serves as a resource to and communicates with district staff and stakeholders, including (but not limited to):
  • Administrative Leadership
  • Title 1 Teacher Leaders, Teachers, and Instructional Assistants
  • Parents/Community
  • Other Educational Agencies
  • Designs and delivers professional development.
  • Creates and/or aligns tools and resources to support instruction.
  • Identifies and analyzes data to inform the work.
  • Follows a work plan:
  • Self-developed (may develop and/or monitor a budget) or director developed.
  • Maintains a cooperative relationship with fellow staff members, students and parents.
  • Follows specified standards, policies and procedures of the District.
  • Adheres to and enforces district, state and federal laws, policies, procedures and regulations.
  • Models instructional strategies with teachers and staff in classrooms.
  • Works with staff and schools to address learning needs of all students.
  • Coordinates with other departments, offices, and organizations to best serve student needs.
  • Provides customized professional development to meet unique student needs and support.
  • Attends meetings as needed.
  • Responds in a cooperative and positive manner to supervision.


  • Performs other duties as assigned.


To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.


Skills in leadership, organization, and communication

  • Ability to use current technology to fulfill job requirements
  • Knowledge of teaching strategies, curriculum, and program materials
  • Use of interpersonal, collaborative and consultation skills with a variety of groups and individuals
  • Use of confidentiality practices regarding student information
  • Ability to write curriculum and facilitate successful professional development presentations.
  • Ability to facilitate effective and purposeful meetings


  • 5 years of verified successful classroom teaching experience
  • Master’s Degree or equivalent training with expertise in a content area related to the assignment


  • Valid Oregon teaching license for the assignment
  • Other as may be required depending on subject matter of instruction
  • Valid Oregon Driver’s License or other means of consistent and reliable transportation


Ability to read, analyze, and interpret periodicals, professional journals, technical procedures or governmental regulations. Ability to write reports, correspondence, and procedure manuals. Ability to effectively present information and respond to questions from groups of students, and the general public.



Ability to work with mathematical concepts such as probability and statistical inference, and fundamentals of plan and solid geometry and trigonometry.  Ability to apply concepts such as fractions, percentages, ratios, and proportions to practical situations.



Ability to solve practical problems and deal with a variety of concrete variables in situations where only limited standardization exists. Ability to interpret a variety of instructions furnished in written, oral, diagram, or schedule form.



Ability to apply knowledge of current research and theory to instructional program; ability to plan and implement lessons based on division and school objectives and the needs and abilities of students to whom assigned.  Ability to establish and maintain effective relationships with students, peers and parents; skill in oral and written communication.



The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.


While performing the duties of this job, the employee is frequently required to stand and talk or hear and sometimes walk and sit.   Occasionally the employee will bend or twist at the neck more than the average person.  While performing the duties of this job, the employee may occasionally push or lift up to 30 lbs. such as boxes of books and AV/VCR carts.  The employee is directly responsible for safety, well-being, or work output of other people.


Specific vision abilities required by this job include close vision such as to read handwritten or typed material, and the ability to adjust focus. The position requires the individual to meet multiple demands from several people and interact with the public and other staff.    



The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.


The noise level in the work environment is moderate to loud.



This is an exempt position as defined under the Oregon Wage and Hours Law. The normal work year and work day will be based on the operational needs of the district, however there may be some hours beyond the normal day, or normal week, depending on the particular operational needs of the district.  The attendance standards described, herein, shall not be construed as a guarantee of hours or days of work.



Salary to be determined by the Board of Directors.  Work schedules will be reviewed and approved by the principal and shall be based on the operational needs of the district.

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Special assignments should be about developing employees. But not all assignments are equal in their development potential. Here are some guidelines to ensure that learning is optimized during such an experience:

Take a moment to think of an experience in your past that you believe made a substantial contribution to your ability to manage and lead others.

The majority of managers when asked this question describe an on-the-job experience, either a new job or a special assignment that still resonates as a meaningful learning experience.

If you accept that the majority of management learning comes from experience, then it follows that you should always ensure that planned development experiences are designed to optimize learning.  And that’s what this article is about.  What are the criteria of excellent experiential learning assignments? What are the factors that, if present, will most effectively teach one about management and leadership?

Several years ago, The Centre for Creative Leadership published a monologue on special assignments that summarized their research on the subject. Based on its application in different organizations, I’ve added to and amended their list with a resulting list of ten key points. Here they are:

10 Criteria of Effective Special Assignments

  1. Success and failure must be clearly defined and observable. Specifics around budgeted cost, time deadlines, quantity expected, and how quality will be measured are crucial not only to the employee assigned, but also to those managing the employee.
  2. Whether or not the assigned employee has formal authority, performance should benefit from a take charge style. There must be an opportunity to take control and run with it.
  3. The task should involve working with new people. The assigned employee must have an opportunity to build new, constructive relationships in a high urgency setting.
  4. The task should be described as “stressful”. The assigned employee must learn to handle situations that many would find stressful, and excel in such situations.
  5. The assigned employee should be expected to influence others over whom he/she has no direct authority. Learning to influence without positional power is a key to success.
  6. The project should require multi-tasking.  One of the greatest challenges faced by those moving up the organization is more complex multi-tasking. There must be an opportunity to review a number of tasks, prioritize them by urgency/impotence, and manage time accordingly.
  7. The assigned employee should have the option of delegating tasks.  He/She should learn not only if and when to delegate, but also how to delegate with appropriate levels of direction and support.
  8. The project must be meaningful and relevant to decision makers (not simply a make-work project). Many such projects will have an executive sponsor who will periodically review progress.
  9. In addition to an executive sponsor, the project will be more effective if the assigned employee has an opportunity to work with a particularly effective manager. A key to experiential learning is learning from an effective role model and coach.
  10. A particularly useful type of developmental assignment is one in which “something important is missing.”  This means that a system or process isn’t functioning optimally and the assigned employee is responsible for detailed data gathering, analysis, and problem solving to improve the system.

It’s rare to find an assignment containing all 10 of these points, but the more you can include, the greater the value added to the participants, development.

For more information contact Bob Power


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