Job Opportunity, Senior Learning Manager: Schools and Young People

This role will oversee the Design Museum's schools and young people’s programmes – Design Ventura, Ardagh Young Creatives and the school programmes – with the support of a small team. The role will own the programme portfolio and be accountable for its delivery and success.

Open Until: 23/04/2023

Posted: 27/03/2023

The Design Museum’s vision is to inspire everyone to understand the value of design. Within that context, the Learning Department works to empower everyone to be involved. We strive to be at the forefront of design education. Our on-site and remote schools programming brings our exhibitions to life for students.

Schools and Young People is a core strand of the museum’s learning portfolio Our work aims to ensure everyone can engage critically and creatively with design, and to embark on a future career in design should they wish to.

Design Ventura is our award-winning learning programme for KS3 and KS4 school students. It brings the business of design to life through a national and international competition to design a product that can be sold in the museum’s shop. 1 in 10 secondary schools in the UK take part, over 19,000 students each year.

The Ardagh Young Creatives programme is an intensive pathway and mentoring programme for young people from under-represented backgrounds, supporting them as they embark on a potential career in design. Having successfully launched in London, in Year 2 it is expanding to Barnsley.

The Senior Learning Manager: Schools and Young People will be a proactive, well-connected design educator and confident senior manager who will oversee this area of the museum’s learning programme. They will look after the team, delivery, and evaluation of our existing programmes, and oversee future programme development alongside the Head of Learning.

They will be a thinker and a connector, engaged with design’s role in the contemporary world and an ambassador for the museum. They will also have an eye for detail, overseeing all written content, partnership agreements and expenditure. They will foster equality, diversity, and inclusion in every aspect of the programmes.


Job scope
This role will oversee the Design Museum’s schools and young people’s programmes – Design Ventura, Ardagh Young Creatives and the school programmes – with the support of a small team. The role will own the programme portfolio and be accountable for its delivery and success.

The post holder will be responsible for overseeing and managing the team that deliver these programmes – and on occasion being directly involved in delivery. They will line manage the Programme Manager, Schools: and Programme Manager, Young People with their respective teams.

The role will work closely with the Head of Learning and the development team to build new opportunities for programming. This includes managing the budgets and supporting on funding the various activities, whether that is through ticket sales, or sourcing external funding.

They will be a team player, accustomed to working with a small, dynamic team. Key relationships will include the wider Learning team, Communications, Commercial and Development teams to grow new audiences and make impact.


Job description
Strategic and programming planning 

•    Create programmes that demonstrates the relevance of design to the broadest range of schools and young people possible, young people from underrepresented backgrounds and schools with typically low participation rates.
•    Ensure the successful ongoing delivery of existing strand ‘Pathways into Design’ learning programmes, including Design Ventura, Ardagh Young Creatives, school programmes and teachers’ events.
•    Strategically create synergies across works within this strand, analyse and synthesize audience research to develop long-term programming outcomes, including and not limited to the regional expansion of the Ardagh Young Creatives, online learning and teacher’s resources and engagement.
•    Prioritise global histories and cultures in contemporary design practice and thinking.
•    Engage and provide support and resources that champion equality and equity within the design sector at large.
•    Build on, develop, and maintain meaningful relationships with schools, local authorities and youth groups in London and across the UK.

•    Manage the team that deliver the core Pathways into Design programme.
•    Ensure that ambitious participant targets are met.
•    Oversee agreements relating to these programmes, negotiating contractual conditions when working in partnership including IP, fees, insurance, and costs.
•    Plan, set and meet financial targets and manage associated budgets to ensure robust accountability.
•    Prepare reports and feedback for senior leadership, committees, and funders as necessary.
•    Ensure health and safety of visitors and other staff in accordance with policies and procedures.
•    Work with the Head of Learning to ensure the programmes are assimilated into the museum’s customer relationship management (CRM).
•    Manage the museum’s relationships with schools, both through building networks and relationships and systemising this through the museum’s (CRM)
•    Marketing the museum’s schools offer with support from the museum’s communication’s team
•    Deputise for the Head of Learning on safeguarding.

Development and future planning
•    Work with the Head of Learning and Development to continue to develop an innovative, relevant, and varied schools and young people’s programme.
•    Liaise with internal stakeholders including Curatorial, Learning, Communications, Collections and Research to ensure that the programmes deliver to the museum’s priorities and stakeholders
•    Identify and develop opportunities for joint ventures with other cultural, industry and educational establishments
•    Use digital platforms to increase participation, impact, reach and effective delivery of programmes

Sector knowledge, museum profile and advocacy    
•    Raise the profile of the museum’s schools and young people’s programmes by participating in talks, debates, specialist networks and representing the museum at conferences.
•    Advocate for the programmes across the museum by contributing to cross-organisational teams.
•    Maintain up to date knowledge of key cultural, educational, and social policy contexts at government, regional and local level.


Person specification- Knowledge, skills, and experience

•    A graduate or postgraduate qualification in education, design, visual culture or a related field, or equivalent experience in the education, design, or visual art industries
•    A growth mind-set and an adaptable attitude, understanding iterative research and development processes.
•    A live network of contacts in the agencies and organisations that can support and shape the programmes.
•    A good understanding of audience research and evaluation.
•    A good understanding of contracts.

•    Ability to transform an ambitious set of aims into a clear strategic programme.
•    Innovative approach to programming, creating a portfolio that is both sector-leading and inclusive.
•    Ability to plan own workload, prioritise effectively and meet tight deadlines across a range of project work.
•    Strong interpersonal and communication skills: a team player, who fosters constructive collegial relationships, relates positively to public audiences and external contributors and stakeholders.
•    Flexible and able to respond and re-programme at a pace, understanding that funders’ aims, and wider context can change at short notice.
•    Highly motivated, effective, and committed team player with commitment to the Design Museum’s vision and values.
•    Excellent written and oral communication skills.
•    Forward thinking, passionate about design and learning

•    Demonstrable experience (professional or unpaid) of working or studying within the cultural learning sector.
•    Experience of formal and informal learning environment, ideally in the design stream.
•    Proven experience of developing and implementing transformational programmes for schools and young people.
•    Experience of generating activity that reaches at times the widest possible audiences from local to international, and equally focused audiences.
•    Experience of managing and developing teams to perform to the best of their abilities and aspirations.
•    Demonstrable experience of managing projects and budgets effectively and meeting ambitious targets – reputational as well as quantitative.
•    Experience of implementing and overseeing partnership agreements.


Special demands of the role: the role will work at times suited to needs of audiences, including evenings and weekends as required.

Terms and conditions
Salary: up to £35,000 per annum, dependent on experience
Holidays: 25 days + Christmas eve (museum closed)
Hours: 37.5 hours per week/full time
Location: the museum is trialling a part-remote working arrangement, where staff work 60% of their role at the museum and 40% remote


Closing date   Sunday 23 April, midnight
Interviews:  Thursday 4 May 2023

For more information and to apply click HERE

"Just to say a huge thanks ... I am looking forward to progressing with this project thanks to your support, advice and guidance"

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