About the Role
The Mackinac Center seeks a Director of Education Policy to help improve the quality of elementary and secondary education for all children in Michigan. The Mackinac Center is at the forefront of nationally recognized education reforms in Michigan. The Wall Street Journal called the Mackinac Center a “leading advocate for a universal education tax credit.” Our Education Policy Initiative is dedicated to helping Michigan students succeed by empowering families with access to a variety of effective educational options. The initiative’s high-quality research shows policymakers and the public how greater freedom can drive innovations that will better meet diverse learning needs.
This full-time position involves researching, developing and promoting reforms that 1) free public schools from needless state and federal government bureaucracy; 2) create greater incentives for schools to respect parents and students as customers; 3) create greater incentives for continuous quality improvement, parental involvement and efficient use of resources; and 4) explore how educational choice can provide greater access to a quality education for all families, especially those in more challenging socioeconomic circumstances.
There are great opportunities for impactful work. The coronavirus pandemic has highlighted and exacerbated the limitations of the traditional K-12 education system. The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that states can employ greater flexibility in educating students (Espinoza, 2020; Carson, 2022). In the last two years many states have expanded educational programs so that every child can receive an excellent education.
The successful candidate will possess the following characteristics and abilities:
- Commitment to free-market solutions to public policy issues;
- Strong desire to advance Michigan education policies that place children first;
- A track record of leadership, even if in junior roles;
- Ability to conceptualize and execute innovations or experiments;
- Excellent research, analysis, writing and oral communication skills;
- Experience in teaching, school administration, education policy or related areas is preferred.
- Develop and execute the strategic plan for the Mackinac Center’s Education Policy Initiative, including the research agenda, projects and publications;
- Produce thoughtful, well-researched content that advances the organization’s mission to expand education freedom in Michigan;
- Perform original analyses of Michigan education data to help shape the understanding of policymakers and other influencers;
- Communicate stories and information that advance policy objectives;
- Read relevant news, study research and analysis, and absorb insights that inform policy development;
- Visit schools and programs that highlight innovative and effective education practices;
- Assist the government affairs team in working with education policymakers;
- Build and strengthen the coalition of support for education choice;
- Act as a reliable ambassador of the Mackinac Center’s mission and core values, especially among current and potential supporters of the organization.
About the Mackinac Center
The Mackinac Center for Public Policy is an educational and research institute located in Midland, Michigan. We advance liberty and opportunity for all people. We develop free-market policy recommendations, challenge government overreach, and foster a climate of public opinion that encourages policymakers to act in the public interest.
Thanks to the Mackinac Center’s work, Michigan teachers are free to work without being forced to pay for a political agenda they disagree with; families enjoy new educational options and students can attend public schools without being required to go to the closest one; ridesharing drivers can operate without committing a crime just for giving someone a ride; the Michigan governor is not permitted to declare endless emergencies; and taxpayers no longer subsidize Hollywood production companies.
The Mackinac Center for Public Policy is ranked among the top five percent of think tanks in the nation, according to the University of Pennsylvania, and its people have been recognized through numerous state and national awards. The Mackinac Center’s model for understanding policy change — the Overton Window of Political Possibility — is frequently cited by policymakers, journalists and academics.
The director of education policy reports to the executive vice president and is located in Midland, Michigan. The position provides a competitive salary and excellent benefits. To be considered for this position, please email your resume, cover letter and two writing samples to:
Vice President of Operations
Mackinac Center for Public Policy
140 West Main Street
P. O. Box 568
Midland, Michigan 48640