Position Title: Education & Outreach Director
Location: National Landing, Arlington, VA (30% remote allowable)
Type: Full-time Employee, exempt
Reports to: Managing Director
Supervises: Education Manager, Education Associate, Teaching artists, Outreach performers
Synetic Theater seeks a dynamic, impact-driven arts education leader to lead Synetic Education, its comprehensive in-studio, arts integration, and outreach programs. The Education & Outreach Director manages all aspects of Synetic Education classes, camps, and outreach programs, and designs, develops, and implements strategy for all educational programming at Synetic Theater. The Education & Outreach Director plays a crucial role in finding and cultivating strong school, parent, student, and community partnerships, and oversees a core of teaching artists and outreach programming artists.
Long-range Planning and Growth of Synetic Education, Outreach, and Family Programs (30%)
- Designs strategies, facilitate stakeholder relationships, and realize plans to grow and improve Synetic’s educational and outreach offerings for all audiences
- Develops and maintain the pipeline of outreach productions, teachers, and community partners
- Designs, launches, and manages new mission-aligned earned revenue education programs and non-revenue centered community programs
- Designs, launches, and manages expanded financial assistance program, in collaboration with the Development Team
- Researches non-profit educational programming and stays abreast of educational trends.
- Applies an equity, diversity, inclusion, and access (EDIA) lens and seeks EDIA feedback for existing and new educational programs.
Existing On-site Education Programs Implementation: Classes, Camps, Student Matinees (30%)
- Oversees implementation of all Synetic classes, camps, matinees, and other on-site programs, ensuring desired outcomes are achieved, including curricula support, registration, management of teaching artists, and quality control
- Provides customer service of highest level to students and parents
- Creates clear, realistic, and measurable strategies for accomplishing the objectives of Synetic educational programs and track the progress towards those goals.
- Provides direct feedback and support for teaching artists in relation to education programs.
- Manages data collection, entry, and analysis to demonstrate programmatic progress to outcomes and growth to support fundraising, branding, and relationship development efforts.
- Creates budgets for educational programs and tracks participation
- Oversees partner relationships (e.g.. class registration services , school district partners, Young Audiences of Maryland, etc)
- Develops content for marketing materials promoting classes and camps including e-news, website, and printed materials, in collaboration with Marketing team
- Collaborates with the Company Manager in facilitating the pipeline relationship between the Teen and Pre-Teen Company and other education programs
Existing Outreach Implementation: Workshops, Residencies, Performances (20%)
- Books, develops, and manages all Synetic outreach programs
- Oversee teaching artists working in schools, including consulting on lesson plans and observing classroom instruction
- Liaises with Synetic’s Development Team to provide data and language for funding requests and reports
Existing Family Theater Season Implementation (10%)
- Provides feedback and relevant information in relation to the Family Series Show (curriculum connections, study guides, education activities)
- Builds relationships with community partners to grow impact and attendance of Family Theater season, in collaboration with Marketing team
Teacher Recruitment, Management and Professional Development (5%)
- Recruits highly professional, diverse instructors for all Education/Outreach programs
- Schedules teachers for Education and Outreach programs
- Manages instructor performance and provides feedback based on observations and students/parents reviews.
- Supports teachers’ continuous professional development and certifications needed for participating in outreach programs.
- Leads annual Teaching Artists Training covering the needs of specific programs.
Community Engagement (5%)
- Represents and promotes Synetic Education, Outreach, Family Theater, and other education initiatives throughout the community, including to National Landing redevelopment efforts
- Builds long-lasting, authentic relationships with our neighborhood and extended DC, Maryland, and Virginia communities, with particular emphasis in broadening and deepening Synetic’s partnership with underserved communities and populations
- Presents at local, regional, and national conferences about Synetic Education programs and initiatives
- Bachelor’s degree or equivalent experience required; Master’s degree or equivalent experience preferred
- Minimum 5 years of arts and/or education management experience preferred
- Strategic planning and implementation experience preferred
- Experience teaching/implementing educational programs
- Project management experience required, including proven capacity in organizational and details management
- Excellent oral and written communication skills, and the ability to cater them to all age populations
- Must be able to work both independently and collaboratively, lead people of all ages, and manage multiple projects simultaneously
- Strong passion for arts education and the Synetic Theater performance style
High-40Ks – Mid-50Ks with comprehensive benefits package.
How to Apply:
Submit your application materials via this form.
Applications accepted until role is filled. Interviews begin July 1, 2021. Preferred start date: August 1, 2021
Synetic Theater is committed to creating a diverse and inclusive environment and considers applicants for employment without regard to, and does not discriminate on the basis of an individual’s sex, race, color, religion, age, disability, status as a veteran, or national or ethnic origin; nor does Synetic Theater discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity or expression.
Synetic Education is celebrating 25 years of progressive excellence in arts education across the Great Washington region. Founding artistic team Paata and Irina Tsikurishvili toured their outreach show The Miraculous Magical Balloon and taught workshops throughout the DMV in the early days of the company. In 2004, Synetic and Classika Theater merged, combining to create a robust education department that features a variety of in-house and outreach programs including camps, classes, workshops, and outreach performances. Building on this legacy, Synetic Theater works with thousands of students throughout the year, helping to develop the next generation of physical storytellers. As part of our Vision 2025 “Secure our Future” Strategic Plan, Synetic Education has set its sights on geographic expansion to all counties in the area, while continuing to find new ways to make an impact in our current communities.
Mission and History
Synetic Theater’s mission is to redefine theater by blending innovative techniques and movement, investing in artists’ growth, and creating unforgettable, visceral experiences for any audience. Synetic is unique in the United States for our signature kinetic stagings of classic literary works, folktales, and devised works leveraging our original “Body of Mind” technique that combines distinct movement styles that emphasize character-based storytelling. The high-voltage athleticism and stunning visuals of Synetic Theater’s productions make it the Greater Washington region’s premier physical theater company and significantly contributes to the community vitality of the region, especially South Arlington where we call home.
We bring our specialized skills in adaptation and ensemble work to our camps and classes, where students work on movement, mime, clowning, acrobatics, and bold acting that culminates in group performance. This physical theater approach offers a uniquely active form of expression for our students. At Synetic, we believe art has the ability to cross all cultural, linguistic, and geographic barriers, and we are dedicated to redefining the theater experience by synthesizing a variety of techniques to help our students tell powerful, affirming stories. Additionally, Synetic has an increasingly prolific outreach program. Through partnerships with public libraries, school districts and other community-based organizations, we bring engaging, accessible live performance and educational experiences to thousands of youth in underserved communities annually. Students often first encounter our work and approach through assemblies and workshops in their schools, and then choose to enroll in one of our in-studio camps or classes. The most engaged students then jump over into our training programs with our Pre-Teen and Teen Companies, a pre-professional program dedicated to developing the next generation of athletic performers. Many of these students then go on to join our professional company.
Synetic Theater was founded in 2001 by Georgian immigrants Irina and Paata Tsikurishvili, who fled the former Soviet country during the liberation movement to escape political and artistic repression. In Georgia, they had trained extensively in physical theater, gymnastics, dance and film, and brought the Eastern European tradition of movement- and visuals-driven theater to the U.S. As we conclude our 20th anniversary season, we reflect on our growth from street performances to our current legacy of awards and acclaim, adapting two or three major classic stories annually.
Artistically, Synetic has consistently produced highly acclaimed productions, having received 35 Helen Hayes Awards and 143 nominations to date. Synetic has been featured in The Catalogue for Philanthropy of Greater Washington, most recently in the 2019-20 edition, and we regularly receive critical acclaim from publications such as The Washington Post, Washington City Paper, and DC Metro Theatre Arts.
COVID-19 Pandemic Innovations
Synetic Education led the field in pandemic-driven innovations to remain accessible to students, teachers, and parents.
During summer 2020, Synetic presented an entirely virtual summer camp experience. We built a camp-specific website that offered a seamless user experience for campers. Each session culminated in final performances that combined pre-recorded and live presentation.
To provide curricular relief to educators and parents, we designed a Virtual Matinee program, combining age-appropriate educational packets aligned to the Virginia Standards of Learning with the viewing of streamed Synetic productions. Packets included interviews, worksheets, and activities. We partnered with Alexandria City Public Schools, reaching 15,000 students.
To provide asynchronous, non-digital enrichment opportunities, we developed the smARTies “Art in a Box” Program through which we distributed 10,000 art kits to families across four DMV school districts, with an emphasis on Title I schools. Built around Virginia Standards of Learning, smARTies boxes contain all materials needed to create a paper-puppet theatre with four characters based on Synetic Theater’s production of The Adventures of Peter Pan.
To meet the need for reliable, safe, fun, and engaging childcare options for working parents, we introduced Synetic SchoolCare, where students grades K-8 can receive in-person supervision and enrichment from Synetic teaching artists during their virtual school hours. Each cohort was capped at 10 students, and instructors provided technical assistance, games that support