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Education cluster coordinator

Save the Children International (SCI)

Job Purpose 

To co-lead the Education Cluster – working closely with UNICEF, across Save the Children and with other partner agencies – to strengthen system-wide preparedness and technical capacity to respond to humanitarian emergencies and ensure predictable and effective inter-agency responses.


The Education Cluster 

The Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) designated Education as a global cluster in late 2006. The Education Cluster is the only cluster at global level co-led by UN and NGO, namely UNICEF and Save the Children. Global Cluster Lead Agencies are accountable to the Emergency Relief Coordinator for ensuring system-wide preparedness and technical capacity to respond to humanitarian emergencies, and for securing greater predictability and more effective inter-agency response.

At a country level, the aim of the Education Cluster is to strengthen humanitarian response by demanding high standards of predictability, accountability and partnership. Over the past 5 years there have been 42 different countries which have established Education Clusters, with concentration and attention being focused on countries where there are current emergencies. As well as supporting coordination of response, the ECU serves as the secretariat for the Education Cluster Working Group (ECWG), a global partnership of nearly 30 agencies engaged in education in emergencies response, and contributes to and monitors actions identified within the 2011-2013 Education Cluster Strategic Plan.

The Education Cluster Unit (ECU) is the core mechanism that the two co-lead agencies use to deliver on their commitments as global Cluster Lead Agencies. The ECU is comprised of a team of UNICEF and Save the Children staff based in Geneva. This post will work closely with their counterpart, the UNICEF Education Cluster Coordinator. It will supervise a small team of ECU staff and consultants based at Save the Children.

Save the Children International 

Save the Children works for children’s rights worldwide. Twenty-nine member organisations make up Save the Children International (SCI), running programmes in over 120 countries, with a staff of more than 14,000 and with a current income of about US$1 billion. Save the Children works for a world which respects and values each child, which listens to children and learns, and where all children have hope and opportunity.

Save the Children has played a key role in raising the profile of education in emergencies over the past years, in particular through its Rewrite the Future campaign and co-leadership of the Education Cluster. Building on this, the new organization-wide Humanitarian Strategy profiles education as a key sector for response, and our Education Global Initiative identifies education in emergencies as an area of focus. The Education Cluster Coordinator will play a key role across the Save the Children members to deliver on these efforts and ensure it meets accountabilities and ambitions for coordination and response in emergencies.

Main Activities 

Advance strategic plan 

- Lead development of the Education Cluster, working closely with partners to deliver on the Education Cluster Strategic Plan 2011-2013, with the following outcomes:
• Education Clusters and national actors have appropriate technical capacities.
• Education Clusters have access to operational support as needed. 
• Shared knowledge and information facilitates effective Education Cluster action. 
• Key stakeholders recognize and provide for education as an essential part of humanitarian response.
• Support the development and use of monitoring and evaluation frameworks for the Education Cluster at global and country levels. 

Support country coordination 

- Facilitate education coordination of large-scale and sudden onset emergencies, working with the ECU to provide support through a ‘watchlist’ system’, supporting colleagues in the field to meet cluster accountabilities, and being available for support visits as needed.
- Maintain engagement with all countries with active Education Clusters, ensuring adequate technical and operational support is available.
- In conjunction with UNICEF, oversee the mobilisation and support for cluster coordination staff, particularly those hired through Save the Children. 

Strengthen inter-agency partnerships 

- Contribute to the co-lead partnership between UNICEF and Save the Children, continuing to strengthen this relationship as a model for humanitarian leadership.
- Facilitate the Education Cluster Working Group (ECWG), working closely with ECU colleagues, including on-going collaboration in Outcome Groups (see above) and Thematic Issues (i.e. gender, early childhood, adolescents and youth, disaster risk reduction, protection, infrastructure and supplies). 

Advocacy and representation 

- Maintain regular links with OCHA and other clusters, particularly through participation in the Global Cluster Coordinators Group, on behalf of the wider Education Cluster.
- Represent the cluster by producing reports, providing presentations and organising events/other activities, including on the NGO element of the partnership. 
- Monitor trends in the external environment and positioning both the Education Cluster and Save the Children in analysis and advocacy. 

Mainstreaming within Save the Children 

- Serve as an active member of the Save the Children Humanitarian Team and key contributor to the Education Global Initiative, ensuring other internal links as needed.
- Support Save the Children country and regional offices to mainstream cluster responsibilities and participate in related emergency preparedness and response.
- Work with Save the Children colleagues and other cluster members to raise substantial new funds to support education in emergencies coordination and response capacity. 

Management of ECU office, staff and budget 

- Line management of Save the Children ECU staff and member-based cluster advisers, with matrix management of other staff contributions as appropriate, in accordance with Save the Children management policies.
- Manage the overall Save the Children Education Cluster budget, working with members to determine contributions and ensuring effective financial oversight and reporting. 
- Joint leadership and team-building of the ECU, in collaboration with UNICEF. 
- Perform such other tasks and responsibilities as may be required in order to ensure the smooth running of the Education Cluster.
- Comply with the requirements of Save the Children child protection policies and other staff policies and make them an explicit component of all Education Cluster activity.

Skills, Knowledge and Experience

- An academic or professional qualification at post-graduate level or equivalent in education, international development or a related subject.
- Substantial programme, operational and management experience at a senior level in both development and large-scale emergency contexts.
- Familiarity with emergency education approaches in rapid-onset, complex and chronic emergency settings
- Knowledge of latest humanitarian and education technical guidelines and standards
- Broad understanding of rights and development issues, international relations and the international humanitarian systems
- Experience in working in inter-agency contexts with governments, UN, NGOs and other partners
- Supervisory and project management skills, experience of working within budget constraints and demonstrable experience of team leadership across large networked organizations.
- Sound strategic thinking and planning skills, ability to think creatively, set priorities, manageable workplans and evaluate progress. 
- Strong representation and communications skills (both written and verbal) in English and at a level appropriate for national high-level external representation and ability to tailor communications to different audiences
- Good interpersonal skills. Must be able to work with many different functions from high level decision makers to technical specialists.
- Experience of securing large grants from bilateral or multilateral donors
- Commitment to Save the Children Alliance’s mission, values and approach (includes child protection, equal opportunities and health and safety)
- Experience of Save the Children’s programmatic approach, systems and structure preferred.
- Ability to travel overseas as required, including flexibility and willingness to travel to countries in crisis situations.
- Computer literate, ability to operate within a predominantly administratively self-servicing environment
- Proficiency in an additional language preferred – French, Spanish or Arabic.

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  • Additional location info Geneva
  • Closing Date 7 Nov 2011

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