The Next Step originated in a program for young parents developed by The Latin American Youth Center (LAYC) in Washington, D.C. As the Teen Parent Program, we provided pregnant and parenting teens with an alternative educational option that would enable them to increase their academic level, prevent future pregnancies, improve parenting skills, and increase self-esteem. When the District of Columbia began permitting charter schools in 1996, The Next Step became one of the first schools to earn a charter from the Board of Education. From 1996-2012 the school occupied the second floor of the Latin American Youth Center.
Since our early days, we have expanded our enrollment and have opened its doors to all out-of-school youth in the city. Today, The Next Step serves approximately 500 youth between the ages of 16 and 30 who are working to pass the GED, learn English, go to college or trade school, and prepare for a career.
In 2010, the Public Charter School Board reauthorized The Next Step to operate for 15 more years–the first charter in D.C. to successfully complete this review process. The Next Step continues to grow, although it intentionally commits to maintaining a small, family atmosphere where every student is known personally. In August 2012, The Next Step relocated from its long-time location on Columbia Road to a larger space at 3047 15th St., NW. Since 2004, The Next Step has been accredited three times by The Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools (2004, 2009, 2014).
Our mission is to provide students who face extraordinary challenges and who are not supported in traditional high schools with the opportunity to continue their education. Class sizes are small and the student support services department staff includes social workers, case managers, attendance and transportation coordinators, and college and career counselors.
We use differentiated instruction, instructional technology, restorative practices and tutors to accommodate a diverse student body. Students receive guidance in order to continue their education beyond the GED at community college, vocational education programs and/or further English proficiency courses.
The Board of Trustees is seeking highly qualified candidates for the position of Executive Director to commence on or around November 1, 2021. This initial announcement will be supplemented by a Leadership Profile that will consist of expected characteristics, required qualifications, and experience. The Leadership Profile is being developed by the Board for posting on or about August 12, 2021.
Minimally, applicants must have multiple-year, successful, executive-level, educational leadership experience in an organization of comparable size and scope. Experience in Charter School management is highly desirable. Candidates should be eligible to obtain a valid District of Columbia Administrative Services Credential (ASC).
A multi-year contract will be offered with a salary in the range of $180,000 per annum subject to negotiation based on qualifications and experience.