Education Policy Advisor

The Education Policy Advisor advocates across the continuum of education - child care, pre-k, and K-12 - to increase access to early education and improve outcomes in education programs for Kansas children.

High-quality and affordable early education programs are critical for both children’s and parents’ life opportunities, and this position focuses on understanding and promoting policy solutions that support both child development and the needs of their parents or caregivers.

The K-12 years are also a strong area of focus for the Education Policy Advisor. Advocating for systems that support kids’ mental, emotional, and behavioral health will be a key part of this role. But the current policy window will require the Education Policy Advisor to spend more time in the early learning and child care aspects of the role for the coming year. 

The Education Policy Advisor supports the organization's advocacy for children in Kansas on a wide range of early learning and K-12 education issues, including child care and child care subsidy policies; robust early learning systems in Kansas; brain development and the case for early education; home visiting programs; out-of-school care; and social-emotional learning. Their expertise in child well-being includes several focus areas, including race equity in early learning and education policy, child and adolescent health, and social-emotional well-being. A successful applicant will have a general understanding of the social, political, and economic environment surrounding child care and education in Kansas.

Reporting to the Policy Director, the Education Policy Advisor will work in the Kansas Statehouse and from our office located in downtown Topeka, Kansas. Some remote/hybrid work during non-legislative session times of the year is offered. This position is represented by Communication Workers of America Local 6400 and is a bargaining unit position.


  • Develop expertise in child care systems, federal and state funding for child care, and the K-12 public education system

  • Build a high level of knowledge about program, policy, and social issues, particularly on early learning and education policies that affect the lives of Kansas children.

  • Maintain up-to-date knowledge of state and federal child care and education policy initiatives – and advocacy strategies used in other states -- to identify potential issues and opportunities for state partners and provide technical assistance.

  • Develop and maintain relationships with state agency staff and coalitions that advocate for early learning and K-12 education, including identifying and implementing collaborative opportunities.

  • Provide strategic guidance, technical assistance, and training to national and state community leaders, advocates, and policymakers to assist them in improving policies and practices.

  • Inform key stakeholders, policymakers, agencies, the media, and the public at large about data findings, trends, and policy implications.

  • Write reports, policy analysis, issue briefs, and blog entries that address policy issues, often by providing subject matter expertise or research to inform the discussion. Provide a Kansas context for national reports and issue briefs.

  • Use knowledge of government processes in developing policy and experience implementing federal or state advocacy strategies to influence policy.

  • Work with other team members during the Kansas legislative session, by monitoring applicable committee meetings, visiting with lawmakers, and providing legislative updates to the KAC team and external partners.


The following skills and experiences will help an individual succeed in this role:

  • 3-5 years of experience or a degree in social work, public policy, education, or related field.

  • Strong desire to use data, policy, and advocacy to ensure that all children reach their potential.

  • Relationships that ideally include community-based organizations, direct service providers, and policy, advocacy, and grassroots organizing groups and the ability to cultivate new relationships.

  • A mix of strong analytical, research, and communications skills, with an emphasis on the ability to creatively apply research to policy problems and communicate solutions, both verbally and in writing.

  • Ability to communicate complex information, research, and technical details to a variety of different audiences and partners, both verbally and in writing, as evident in writing samples and application materials.

  • Exceptional project management skills, attention to detail, and an ability to manage complex projects and work in cross-functional teams to achieve project objectives.

  • Demonstrated capacity to set priorities; work on multiple complex and detail-oriented projects, often on a time-sensitive basis; and work effectively individually and as part of a team.

  • Ability to flexibly apply existing skills and knowledge to new content areas, tasks, or projects, and to do so with increasing independence.

  • Deep commitment to race, equity, and inclusion evident through efforts to improve the health, education, and economic opportunity for Kansas children and families of color.


The salary range for this position is $56,500 – $60,000 annually, commensurate with qualifications and experience.


Our organization follows a hybrid work structure where employees can work remotely or from the office. This position requires an in-person presence in the Statehouse during the legislative session, and in the office for specific tasks, team meetings, and formal and informal collaboration. This position requires an ability to work long hours during legislative session and commute to meetings and events throughout the state and to national conferences, as needed.

At Kansas Action for Children, we believe in a comprehensive approach to rewarding and supporting staff. We work to balance financial stability with competitive pay and meaningful benefits – while offering unmatched schedule flexibility and mission-based work. This includes:

  • Flexible Paid Time Off (available immediately upon hire)
  • Remote work when the position does not require you to be onsite, with a flexible work environment
  • Retirement plan employer contribution of 3%, with 100% vesting of the match upon hire
  • Health insurance coverage with generous individual and family portions paid by the organization
  • Paid Family Leave


Kansas Action for Children is an equal opportunity/equal access/affirmative action employer fully committed to achieving a diverse workforce and complies with all applicable Federal and Kansas State laws, regulations, and executive orders regarding nondiscrimination and affirmative action in its programs and activities. Kansas Action for Children does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, ethnic or national origin, gender, genetic information, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, pregnancy or parental status and veteran’s status.

Kansas Action for Children recognizes and honors diversity in race, ethnicity, culture, age, abilities, gender, sexual orientation, and places where people live. We strongly encourage applications from people of color, immigrants, refugees, women, people with disabilities, members of the LGBTQ community, and other underrepresented and historically marginalized groups.

The initial review of applicants will take place October 2, 2023.