Job Opening: Director of Learning & Public Programs
Reports to: Executive Director
Status: Full time
Location: Springfield, IL
Application Deadline: Open until filled
Start date: Feb 10, 2020

Compensation & Benefits: Pay rate negotiable based on experience.

About Kidzeum: Kidzeum is a wonderful new family destination in the heart of historic downtown Springfield, IL., whose mission is to serve as a place of learning and discovery through play for children of ALL abilities. Kidzeum is committed to nurturing health and wellness, promoting science education, and to developing environmental and global awareness through innovative programs and exhibits. Learn more at

Position Description: Kidzeum of Health and Science believes in learning through play. We are seeking an enthusiastic, confident and engaging Director of Learning & Public Programs. This person will work collaboratively to augment exhibit content in our galleries; train play specialists to enhance the visitor experience; create and deliver museum programs, camps, classes, family events, school tours, and birthdays. S/he will also work to develop and implement educational materials and curricula.

This is a full-time position with a base schedule of Tuesday through Saturday 9:00 am to 5:00pm, with extended evening or Sunday hours as needed to oversee programs and participate in other museum activities.

Duties and Responsibilities: The Director of Learning & Public Programs is charged with the leadership, strategy, and direction for all Kidzeum’s programs and activities around learning. These programs will further the museum’s mission and keep the Kidzeum at the forefront of the children’s museum field.

The director will:

  • Integrate education, public programs, and interpretation strategy to provide dynamic learning opportunities for our audiences
  • Engage in and model playful, impactful interactions with children and families and coach teammates and volunteers to engage in memorable play moments with guests
  • Manage day-to-day department operations including budget, personnel, and education staff meetings
  • Work collaboratively with other departments to build cross-disciplinary programming that addresses multiple audiences and multiple learning styles
  • Foster relationships with Kidzeum staff, trustees, volunteers, and other key figures
  • Conceive and implement educational programs that continue to attract broader and more diverse audiences.
  • Oversee Play Specialists who interact with visitors in the galleries, and who deliver an additional layer of content and engagement
  • Develop and maintain relationships with teachers and school administrators. Create educational curricula, school tours, outreach programs and educational materials that meet the needs of their students

Qualifications, Skills and Abilities:

  • Bachelor’s degree in education, science, health or related field
  • At least 5 years of experience in education, with demonstrated success in creating and leading informal, play-based learning experience
  • Established content knowledge in child development and a willingness to share that knowledge in a playful, accessible manner to a variety of audiences
  • Leadership experience and proven excellence in building capacity and cohesion of a highly performing team
  • Ability to share and build knowledge across the team about the importance of play, children’s ages and stages of development, effective strategies for facilitated learning through child-led play, and engaging caregivers in play
  • Demonstrated leadership, staff management, and strategic planning skills
  • Ability to generate financial support in partnership with the Development department
  • Exceptional written, oral, and interpersonal communication skills

Physical Demands & Work Environment: The physical demands and work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions of this position.  Physical requirements may include stooping, kneeling, bending, standing, crawling, and walking. Lifting and transporting of moderately heavy objects, such as boxes, etc. may be included.

Application Process: Please send a cover letter, resume and three references to Leah Wilson, executive director, at [email protected]. Deadline to apply is January 15.

Kidzeum is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Additionally, we strive to make the Kidzeum community – staff, visitor base, programs, and exhibitions – representative of the diversity of the city of Springfield and Central Illinois, and to carry forth the spirit of access, inclusion, and equity in all we do. If you need an accommodation due to a disability, you may contact us at: [email protected]