Case Management/Social Services, Database Management, Education/Teaching/Training
The Sonia Shankman Orthogenic School, and its programs, provides mental health treatment and special education services to students with severe social and emotional disorders. It has anecdotal evidence of its success but is seeking to back this up with research, data, and outcome measurement and analysis. The new position of Research Director will lead and oversee the organization’s efforts to track, investigate, report, and impact the work of the school’s programs with the aim of influencing the best practices in the field, informing public policy decisions, and aid the school as it seeks to become an industry leader in residential treatment, special education, mental health services, and growth of children, adolescents, and their families. These efforts include both short term, time limited projects as well as on-going longitudinal and follow-up studies that encompass both quantitative and qualitative research methods. The activities will be reported out to the school’s staff to assist in quality improvement; the Development Office to enhance fundraising; the Leadership teams to further strategic development; the Board of Directors to facilitate governance; and to professionals within the field to contribute to establishing best practice standards in this field. Reporting will occur on a scheduled basis for each project in the forms of written reports, informational tables and graphs, presentations, and, when applicable, peer-reviewed publications. This position will work with both internal and external personnel to ensure timely and accurate completion of projects. The Director of Research will be responsible for facilitating the integration of solid research practices into the established milieu without compromising or disrupting the intensive treatment milieu. Reach and outcome measurement will be completed in a manner that reflect the highest integrity of scientific study, all applicable laws, regulations, and standards of best practices, and with respect and sensitivity of everyone involved with particular care given to issues of race, ethnicity, religion, socio-economic status, gender, sexual orientation, trauma, learning differences, and mental health concerns.
Duties and responsibilities
Build a Research Culture at the School – 20%
Complete a Needs Assessment in terms of Research and Outcome Measurement at the school
Complete an evaluation of current efforts to complete research and outcome measurement at the school
Establish a 5-year strategic plan for establishing and advancing research development at the school that includes but is not limited to anticipated accomplishments, and dates of completion. This plan should specify and identify responsible personnel for each task and detail specifically the methods by which participants, staff members, leadership teams, and the board of directors will be involved and informed. This plan should also include an outline for the dissemination of both internally and externally.
Educate existing and future staff members, students, and families about the importance of research, outcome measurement, and external engagement in our field
Identify areas of the school’s programs that can best benefit from and contribute to the field of study through research and measurement
Aid each aspect of the programs in identifying program specific research and outcome measurement projects to be completed on a time limited and/or on-going basis.
Further the school’s goal of being an inclusive, affirming, anti-racist, anti-prejudice program by ensuring all research and outcome measurements is sensitive and responsive to differences related to race, religions, ethnicity, economic status, gender, and sexual orientation.
Conduct Outcome Measurement- 20%
Establish key indicators related to the services provided by the school’s program from pre-admission to post-discharge that are based on both process and outcome based data
Develop and sustain process and outcome based activities to gather, aggregate, analyze, and interpret outcome findings on a routinely scheduled basis that focuses on the school’s settings, demographics of participants, identified needs of participants, interventions utilized, and related factors external to the school
Complete data collection and analysis with strong scientific and statistical adherences and that are reflective of the schools’ mission and values
Ensure all applicable laws and requirements are adhered to in the collection and use of data, in particular related to informed consent to participate and privacy issues
Ensure outcome measurements are in concert with established outcome measurement of regulatory agencies, funding sources, professional trade organizations, while also extending the boundaries of those organizations
Collaborate with leadership staff and Director of Compliance in developing on-going, time limited, and targeted continuous quality improvement projects related to programmatic service provision
Complete a retrospective follow-up analysis of the school’s impact on former students, and potentially employees, for all years since 1948.
Complete an on-going follow-up study of all students and participants
Generate Project Reports – 15%
Establish a schedule for reporting on research and outcome measurement efforts that includes internal programs, leadership teams, compliance and development, board of directors, and external partners when requested
Provide written summary of research and outcome measurement as directed
Provide graphic reports that provide a clear visual depiction of the information being presented
Facilitate the sharing of written and graphic reports with the individuals and groups listed previously when appropriate
Evaluate findings to determine what information should be shared externally for the purpose of professional presentation
Prepare a quarterly finding report for the Board of Directors and Newsletter
Prepare an annual finding report for the Annual Report
Provide as requested information updates that can be used to respond to referral related questions and marketing efforts, such as a website update, blog report, or social media pages
Integrate Information into Practice -10%
Determine in what manner is it best to share research and outcome measurements on an on-going basis with staff members
Present gathered information in a manner that is informative, direct, constructive, professional and conducive to learning
Contribute to the completion of on-going licensing, certification, approval, and accreditation reviews as needed
Participate in professional trade organizations research and outcome measurement efforts when appropriate and advancing the school or the fields knowledge.
Collaborate with Development Office and Marketing Team -10%
Coordinate with Development Office and Marketing Team to ensure findings reports are shared in a timely manner and in preparation of key events for both departments
Identify and report on key findings that would increase the school’s ability to be awarded grants and attract new referrals
Share Findings Publicly – 10%
Develop and mentor staff from all parts of the program to identify the areas of work that they are completing that would be noteworthy and contributory to the broader learning community in our field of practices
Submit three to five professional conferences to present findings on an annual basis after the first year of the Strategic Plan, whether the presenter is in this position or a mentored member of the school staff
Support the submission to at least three publications annually, with two being peer-reviewed, articles or essays that further shares the work of the school and connects the school to the broader learning community of the field.
Supervise Research Assistants and Interns – 5%
Supervise administratively and clinically any part-time employees and/or graduate level interns and externs in the completion of research and outcome measurement
Coordinate collaboration with external partners that provide academic training students to assist in the completion of research and outcome measurement.
Milieu Maintenance – 5%
Be a positive role model for students, families, and staff members by maintaining a high degree of professionalism, in particular as related to behaving in ways that reflect honesty, integrity, and sensitivity to others
Be on-time, organized, and complete tasks in a timely and thorough manner
Participate in the all-school activities, including but not limited to open houses, student and family events, holiday celebrations, and graduations
Other Duties as Assigned – 5%
Master’s Degree in related field, licensed LCSW or Ph.D./Psy.D preferred
Expertise in using SSPS and other information database required
Expertise in using academic research search tools, databases, and libraries required
Expertise in using Microsoft Office Suite required
3 years of past research experience required, 5 or more years preferred
2 years of supervisor or managerial experience preferred
Working within special education and mental health treatment setting where program participants can potentially express emotionally upsetting or physically dangerous behavior
Training in therapeutic crisis intervention model
Typical office work station set-up, with extended periods of time working at a desk and computer
Some travel to other programs, local travel to board meetings, and occasional out of town for conferences and networking opportunities
Need to interact with co-workers, participants, family members, board members, and fellow professionals in a respectful and professional manner on a regular basis
Need to be self-monitoring tasks completion and multiple demands and timelines
The physical demands of this position are similar to regular office work.
Need to be able to lift up to 50lbs to carry file boxes
Need to be able to safely protect oneself in accordance with TCI model in the event of a student’s assaultive behavior
As the activities of the department grow there is a potential for supervising part-time research assistants and graduate level interns/ externs.
The Leslie Shankman School Corporation is an equal opportunity employer. All applicants are considered for employment without regard to race, color, national origin, religion, sex, age, marital or veteran status, or disability.
About The Sonia Shankman Orthogenic School
The term “orthogenic” refers to the use of corrective interventions that promote all aspects of healthy development. This represents the O-School’s mission to give its students a second chance to succeed and grow in school and beyond. To ensure success, the O-School emphasizes the development of key life skills, including:
•Recognizing strengths and utilizing them to achieve success
•Building strong and beneficial relationships that provide support “in the moment“
•Managing daily life experiences with flexibility and problem solving skills in order to build adaptability
•Fostering a sense of mastery and confidence each day to promote self-esteem
•Setting and achieving short and long term goals
•Analyzing situations so that feelings and perceptions are taken into consideration when problem solving
•Establishing an identity within smaller and larger communities
•Navigating the world safely and productively