Job Title: Learning Programs Manager

Reports to: Director of Education and Communications

Classification: Salary Exempt


About Chicago Shakespeare Theater

Located on Chicago’s Navy Pier, this Regional Tony Award-winning nonprofit theater’s year-round season features as many as twenty productions and 650 performances in a typical year, which include plays, musicals, world premieres, family programming, and theatrical presentations from around the globe, with one in four audience members under the age of eighteen. Chicago Shakespeare is the city’s leading presenter of international work, and has toured its own productions to five continents. In 2017 the Theater unveiled its third stage, The Yard at Chicago Shakespeare, with its innovative, completely flexible architecture design. Together with the Jentes Family Courtyard Theater and the Thoma Theater Upstairs studio theater, The Yard positions Chicago Shakespeare as the city’s most versatile performing arts center.

The Theater’s arts-in-literacy programs, recognized as a national leader by First Lady Michelle Obama in 2014 at a White House ceremony, support the work in classrooms across the region by bringing words to life on stage for tens of thousands of students each year and through a variety of professional learning opportunities for teachers. The Theater’s free Chicago Shakespeare in the Parks program celebrates its tenth anniversary in Summer 2021, in collaboration with neighborhood parks across the city.

Chicago Shakespeare is committed throughout its work on stage, and with teachers, students and audiences to approach the work of Shakespeare critically, in understanding the role that the playwright’s body of work has historically served in colonial and white supremacist cultures.



This experienced program and project manager is responsible for the Theater’s professional learning efforts with teachers and, in close partnership with the Student Programs Manager, for stewarding the Theaters relationships with approximately 1,000 teachers and 40,000 students each year through the implementation of all facets of our Team Shakespeare schools programs. The Learning Programs Manager oversees the department’s work with interns and plays a key role in the Theaters internship program alongside other departments’ leaders. Primary responsibilities and skills include program management, planning and development, and relationship stewardship with teachers.

The Education Department has a full-time professional staff of four, working closely with other employees across the Theater in inter-departmental efforts. This full-time, salaried position, reporting to the Director of Education, works in close association with the Student Programs Manager. Frequent Saturdays throughout the school year and some evening hours are required in the departments work with teachers and students.


Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • In collaboration with the Director of Education, develop, implement, and evaluate programs for the Theaters teacher professional learning programs. Plan and organize education programs and events, including all professional learning for teachers:
  • Collaborate closely with both external and internal instructors to plan teacher workshops and develop teaching materials for these sessions consonant with the departments teaching philosophy and IDEA objectives;
    Create and format handouts for teacher workshops, maintaining the department’s standards for clarity, accuracy, and aesthetics;
  • Recruit a diverse pool of educators into Bard Core, the department’s year-long professional learning seminar;
    Identify and recruit external instructors who are diverse in race and ethnicity, backgrounds and skills to support the teacher learning programs;
  • Work with both Illinois School Board of Education (ISBE) and Chicago Public Schools (CPS) offices of teacher professional development accreditation;
  • Maintain records and fulfill requirements as a professional development provider in affiliation with the Illinois State Board of Education, and Chicago Public Schools;
  • In close collaboration with Student Programs Manager, assist in administering the day-to-day operations supporting the Theater’s student matinee series:
  • Steward the department’s extensive communications and relationship-building with teachers, providing exemplary customer service;
  • Maintain detailed contact management and sales record-keeping in the organization-wide Tessitura database;
  • Welcome teachers and student audiences to the Theater’s matinee performances, proactively utilizing these onsite contacts with teachers to build ongoing, supportive relationships.
  • In collaboration with other team members, actively support the planning, organizing, implementing, and evaluating of the annual Chicago Shakespeare Slam with high school teams from across the region:
  • Recruit, schedule, and communicate with teacher coaches;
  • Develop teaching and support materials, including print/online collateral;
  • Plan workshops and Slam events at CST and host schools.
  • Develop teaching materials for teacher handbooks and online resources for teachers;
  • Create new arts-integrated literacy activities aligned with Common Core and Illinois Arts Learning Standards, and supportive of the department’s education philosophy and IDEA objectives;
  • Identify articles, podcasts, books that further the department’s commitment to teaching Shakespeare in an anti-racist classroom;
  • Identify relevant works of BIPOC authors that can be creatively paired with Shakespeare in the Theater’s teaching materials.
  • Oversee the department’s internship program and provide guidance to the Theater’s broader internship program;
  • Recruit, interview, and effectively co-supervise the departments seasonal interns, with a focus on seeking candidates of color;
  • Represent the department in institution-wide internship program planning efforts, including participation in planning intern training seminars.
  • Collaborate with the Marketing Department in developing and maintaining deadline-driven communications materials representing the department’s work for the Theater’s website, and print and email communications;
  • Plan and execute department communications, including teacher handbooks, teacher workshop materials, the abridged Shakespeare production program, summer family musical program activities, teacher information packets; teacher recruitment for professional learning programs;
  • Collaborate with Marketing Department to develop and execute deadlines, printing and mailing specs;
  • Maintain the departments archive of printed materials;
  • Develop expertise in operation/implementation of database programs utilized in the department (Tessitura and Excel), and proactively identify needs in the department’s database use.
  • In collaboration with other team members, facilitate post-show cast discussions for the abridged Shakespeare production.
  • Oversee the Teacher Resource Center (TRC) collection, including:
  • Procurement and accessioning of new resources;
  • Schedule, prepare for, and host teacher visits to the TRC;
  • Manage internal staff loans of materials.
  • Work as an effective team member within the department and cross-departmentally with Guest Services, Advancement, Marketing, Events, Facilities, and Production;
  • Serve as advocate for the education programs and constituencies throughout the organization and in the community; serve as CST’s representative in citywide arts learning partner organizations, including Ingenuity, Inc., and Chicago Public Schools.



Knowledge and Essential Skills

A track record of exemplary program management, organizational, and systems-keeping skills, with a minimum of two years of post-graduate professional experience in closely related management position. Strong writing and communication skills; ability to represent Chicago Shakespeare Theater in highly professional manner through written, visual, and personal presentation to a variety of audiences, including educators, students, and general audiences. Ability and desire to work effectively and supportively as a team member. Background and facility in current state of education practices, including Common Core State Standards and CPS Framework for Teaching strengthens application. Advanced proficiency in MS Office Suite, including Excel, essential; Tessitura database, desktop publishing proficiency desirable.


Physical Demands:

  • Moderate physical activity performing strenuous/non-strenuous daily activities of a product/technical nature;
  • Ascending or descending stairs, ramps and the like, using feet and legs and/or hands and arms;
  • Moving about to accomplish tasks, particularly for long distances;
  • Standing or sitting, particularly for sustained periods of time;


Work Environment:

  • Well-lighted, heated and/ or air-conditioned indoor office/ production setting with adequate ventilation;
  • Moderate noise;



Communicating & Informing:

Provides the right level of information at the right time to the right people; Adjusts communication style to the team member; Shares information freely & appropriately; doesn’t withhold information.


Stays balanced under pressure; Can adjust to the unexpected; Calms others during times of stress; Remains solutions-oriented during times of change; Demonstrates patience.

Conflict Management & Critical Conversations:

Addresses critical conversations quickly & calmly; Listens with focus; Can drive compromise with minimal disruption; Escalates issues when appropriate; Listens with the balance of objectivity & empathy.

Dealing with Uncertainty/Change:

Adapts to change quickly & nimbly; Guides others through change; Ability to act, lead, & make decisions with limited information.


Clearly & comfortably delegates work, responsibility and accountability; Shares decision making when appropriate; Recognizes multiple ways of getting things done.

Empowering Others:

Creates a comfortable climate for the team; Drives team brainstorming & creativity; Encourages diverse points of view; Listens without judgment; Cultivates an environment of free exchange of ideas.



Salary is competitive within the non-profit performing arts industry and commensurate with qualifications and experience. Benefits package includes health, dental, vision, 403b, paid time off, life insurance, and commuter spending plan.


Core Values:

Chicago Shakespeare shared values are essential to our success as a world-class theater company. These values guide our decisions and behaviors and shape our culture.


We take pride in sharing our time, talents, and resources with our community. We strive to be present and available to the individuals and organizations with whom we engage, enriching and uplifting one another to create a beneficial shared experience. We consider ourselves enthusiastic ambassadors of Chicago Shakespeare and its programs, mission, and core values, while also being steadfast advocates for those we serve.


Believing that innovation is the source of positive change, we freely exchange ideas about how we can best approach our work, striving always to improve our practices and programming. We meet challenges with a spirit of positivity, curiosity, and creativity exploring non-traditional solutions, taking calculated risks, and embracing new strategies along the way.


We embody the theatrical spirit of collaboration in every aspect of our work, and highlight the importance of each individuals role in advancing our shared goals. We actively listen and communicate clearly and effectively. We honor and respect one another and our identities, and recognize our unique differences as key to our collective success.


Chicago Shakespeare Theater is committed to enhancing our diverse work environment and is proud to be an equal opportunity employer. Chicago Shakespeare does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, gender identity, religion, sexual orientation, age, disability, parental status, veteran status, or any other protected status under applicable laws. We encourage individuals of all backgrounds to apply.

Instructions to Apply:

Please apply at https://bit.ly/3crAQX9

Pay Rate/Range*: $47,500 - $52,500