Back-end Developer, PHP (NYC)

The Role

As the Director, Back-End Developer, PHP, you will be responsible for writing custom code to implement new functionality, as well as support and augment existing libraries and frameworks at Teach For America that spans all web properties. As a member of a team consisting of Front-End Developers, a Full-Stack Developer, QA, Business Analysts, and a Scrum master, you will build the required back-end technology to create a seamless experience for customers as well as internal stakeholders. The work you do will be central to how Teach For America achieves its powerful mission to transform society through educational reform.

You will report to the Managing Director of Web and serve as the lead developer on the technology team of Teach For America's digital marketing organization. You will focus on implementing and maintaining PHP applications, while working closely with Channel Strategy team members to build web solutions.

The Team

Our Marketing and Communications team is charged with bringing to life Teach For America's mission and the collective impact of our network through storytelling. We drive the national brand and narrative for Teach For America, defining and stewarding the organization's brand identity, positioning, and key messages. We leverage strategic communications to rally the next generation of leaders to join Teach For America; to strengthen our community of corps members, alumni, staff and supporters; and to build broader understanding of our mission and impact in the context of educational inequity in America.

Qualifications:

Primary Responsibilities

  • Work with members of the user experience team and web team to continuously improve the user experience of Teach For America's web properties
  • Help drive the improvement of Teach For America's content management system (Drupal) and related tools. Extend and customize Drupal to meet business needs
  • Perform support and maintenance of existing PHP code base
  • Leverage modern development principles and libraries to ensure web platforms are architected to be scalable and maintainable
  • Help the web team reach its goal of achieving high end visual design and functionality on Teach For America's web properties, understanding the ultimate goal of increasing the volume of applications, donations, and other support for the organization and our mission
  • Partner closely with the IT team, system administrators, freelancers, and vendors to optimize the whole site
  • Be accountable for production support/emergencies as a point of contact
  • Merge code into shared repositories, validate code, and perform quality assurance on your work to ensure it meets high quality standards
  • Review build specifications and documentation
  • Champion conceptual integrity
  • Partner with developers to define code standards and best practices
  • Work with the product team (Developers, Project Manager, Business Analyst) to design systems, code, and test new dynamic site features/functionality
  • Contribute ideas and execution strategies for new projects and site features; develops and codes new site and site support features
  • Collaborate with IT Tech Leads directly and be responsible for creating a shared technical community of practice with IT
  • Liaise with outside vendors on larger initiatives and on ongoing smaller projects

Requirements

Prior Experience:

  • 6-8 years of experience in back-end / server-side coding
  • Experience developing PHP applications
  • Experience writing automated tests and following Test Driven Development (TDD) processes
  • Experience working in an agile environment
  • Experience working on a large website rebuild or re-platform project

Skills and Key Personal Attributes include:

  • Deep expertise in Drupal and PHP, including experience working in Drupal 7 with custom theming as well as with key contributed modules, custom Views, Panels, Chaos Tools, and Features
  • Proficiency in custom module development with the Drupal Core API (Database API, Entity API, Form API, Batch API, Field API, File API)
  • The ability to write clear maintainable, and scalable code
  • Familiarity with multiple PHP frameworks on the market, and their strengths and weaknesses
  • Up to date knowledge of best practices in code design
  • Passionate about educational equity as well as a demonstrated commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusiveness
  • Ability to think big, generate ideas and drive solutions to complex problems in a fast-paced, deadline-driven environment
  • Strong written and oral communication skill
  • Maintains a sense of possibility in the face of obstacles, and balances both short- and long-term results
  • Focus on the team's success over personal recognition
  • Participate in pair-programming, and collaborate with the team

Education:

  • Bachelor's degree required, or years of relevant experience

Work Demands:

  • National travel for in-person meetings will vary throughout the year, but is estimated to include an average of 1 trip per month; some weekend and evening work expected

Apply Now

To be considered for this role, you must submit an online application. Please scroll down to the bottom of the page to find the link to the online application. For more information, please contact [email protected] or visit www.teachforamerica.org/about-us/careers.

About the Organization

There are more than 16 million children growing up in poverty in the U.S., and less than 10 percent of them will graduate from college. These statistics are not a reflection of our children's potential; we know that children growing up in poverty can and do achieve at the highest levels. Rather, these statistics reflect the systemic lack of access and opportunity for children in low-income communities.

Teach For America (TFA) finds, develops, and supports an ever-expanding network of outstanding and diverse leaders committed to expanding opportunity for children in schools, school systems, and in every sector and field that shapes the context in which schools operate. Representing the diversity of America and sharing the experience of having taught successfully in our most challenging public schools, TFA corps members and alumni form a network of change agents inside and outside of education who are grounded in the tremendous potential of our most underserved children and connected to families and communities impacted by educational inequity.

Founded by Wendy Kopp in 1989, Teach For America has since expanded to 36 states and 53 regions, reaching more than 10 million students. Now 53,000 strong and growing each year, the TFA community is leading across all sectors, including as teachers, school and school system leaders, elected officials, policy and advocacy organizers, social entrepreneurs, and business and civic leaders. We support the individual and collective leadership of this network as they work hand-in-hand with students, families, and allies in the effort to realize educational equity and excellence for children across the nation.

Our Core Values:

Our core values define who we are at our best and guide our work together.

  • Pursue Equity: We work to change practices, structures, and policies to realize educational equity for all children. As we do so, we actively examine our roles in perpetuating inequitable systems.
  • Strengthen Community: We assume responsibility for our collective strength by developing relationships, building diverse and inclusive coalitions, and challenging one another to be our best. We act with empathy and extend grace to ourselves and others.
  • Achieve Impact: We pursue ambitious, meaningful outcomes that lead to access and opportunity for all children. We hold ourselves to high standards, make data-informed decisions, and orient to long-term success.
  • Choose Courage: We act on our beliefs and values, especially when it's hard. We center our efforts on the aspirations of our students and their families.
  • Act with Humility: We acknowledge the limitations of our perspectives. We seek different points of view and historical context to evolve our thinking and actions.
  • Demonstrate Resilience: We see every challenge as an opportunity to think expansively about solutions. When faced with obstacles, we deepen our resolve, adapt, and persist with optimism.
  • Learn Continuously: We operate with curiosity and embrace new ideas to innovate and constantly improve. We take informed risks and learn from successes, setbacks, and each other.

Diversity, Equity and Inclusiveness at the Center of Our Mission

At Teach For America, we aspire to embody the commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusiveness we envision for our nation. Unequal access to opportunity along lines of race, class, and other aspects of identity has deep roots in American history, and institutional racism and classism contribute to inequitable access to educational opportunity in our country today. Therefore, understanding race, class, and the intersectional nature of oppression along these and other lines is critical to eliminating educational inequity and creating an education system in which all students can flourish.

Realizing educational equity and excellence will take a broad and diverse coalition of people—of diverse races, ethnicities, socioeconomic statuses, genders, sexual orientations, abilities, political views, and other aspects of identity and spheres of influence—united around a common purpose and shared values. We know that the change effort must be shaped by those of us who are most directly impacted by educational inequity. We also know that progress is only possible if each of us works effectively across lines of difference—with students, parents, partners, and each other—and if each of us understands and leverages the assets we bring to this work based on our identities and life experiences.

This understanding guides our strategy as we pursue our mission, and impacts how we allocate resources to recruit, select, train, support, retain, and engage corps members, alumni, and staff. In all we do, we act on the following beliefs.

→ Diversity is crucial for successful change efforts and is one of Teach For America's greatest strengths.

→ The full potential of our diverse network will be reached only when we are an inclusive community.

→ The predictability of success or failure for our students or individuals in our organization should not correlate with any social, cultural or other identity-based factors.

In striving to grow as individuals who lead with a commitment to diversity, equity and inclusiveness, we focus on:

  • Understanding of self and self in relation to others. We examine our worldview and experiences to understand how they're influenced by power, privilege, oppression, and biases. As we deepen our understanding of self in relation to others, we seek out diverse perspectives and experiences to challenge our assumptions and expand our perspectives.
  • Understanding and interrupting systemic racism, classism, and other forms of oppression. We understand that our society and education system have been shaped by multiple forms of oppression, in particular racism and classism. We understand the role and impact of unconscious bias in establishing low expectations for children's capabilities, and we also see this play out in the workplace. Therefore, we commit to work together `to envision and implement new ways of operating that disrupt these systems and practices.
  • Working toward equity. We leverage this understanding to surface and interrupt inequitable practices in our schools as well as within our organization. In classrooms, we are committed to ensuring all students have the necessary resources, supports, and academic preparation they need to ensure full agency in their lives. In our organization, we're committed to allocating our resources and setting organizational policies, systems, and practices to reduce and eliminate gaps in experience and outcomes by demographic group.
  • Building inclusive coalitions. We recruit and retain a corps and staff that reflects the inclusive coalition we need representing our nation. Simultaneously, we ensure those of us who have faced educational inequity shape our direction. We intentionally build authentic relationships across lines of difference; facilitate honest and productive conflict among diverse groups; create structures, policies, and processes that enable this effort; and value the diversity of ideas and perspectives required in this effort.

Benefits and Salary

Salary for this position is competitive and depends on prior experience. In addition, a comprehensive benefits package is included. Learn more at www.teachforamerica.org/about-us/careers/employee-benefits.

Commitment to Diversity and Equal Opportunity Employment Policy

Teach For America encourages individuals of all ethnic, racial, and socioeconomic backgrounds to apply for this position. We are committed to maximizing the diversity of our organization, as we want to engage all those who can contribute to this effort. Learn more about our diversity on staff: www.teachforamerica.org/about-us/careers/life-at-tfa/workforce-diversity-and-inclusiveness.

Teach For America is committed to providing equal employment opportunities to all qualified individuals and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex, gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, national origin, disability, age, marital status, veteran status, pregnancy, parental status, genetic information or characteristics (or those of a family member) or any other basis prohibited by applicable law.

This job description reflects Teach For America's assignment of essential functions and qualifications of the role. Nothing in this herein restricts management's right to assign, reassign or eliminate duties and responsibilities to this role at any time.


Meet Some of Teach For America's Employees

Aimée B.

Manager, Teacher Leadership Development

Aimée supports new corps members, helping TFA’s first and second year teachers navigate the classroom and successfully educate students.

Jace G.

Director, Finance & Strategy

Jace manages TFA’s expenses and fundraising, and he uses data to build spending and growth strategies that will maximize TFA’s impact for students.


Back to top