Somerville Public Schools
Employment Opportunities


Somerville Public Schools
Somerville, Massachusetts

Job Details
Job ID: 3305924 Application Deadline: Posted until Filled
Posted: November 11, 2020 Starting Date: Immediately

Job Description
2020-2021 SCHOOL YEAR

Student Insights Lead Product Engineer

Job Goal: The overarching goals of the Student Insights project ( are to provide educators with a comprehensive easy-to-use open-source tool that:
?Integrates a range of student data sources and interventions into one easy interface
?Enhances communication among staff in order to prevent students from falling through the cracks
?Helps schools use data to solve everyday problems that educators face
?Supports schools and educators in advancing equity for students
This is a unique opportunity for the ideal candidate to bring together their coding abilities, interpersonal skills, and passion for transforming lives through the use of technology.

•Able to work across the stack to ship new product features, using technologies like Rails, Ruby, JavaScript, React and, CSS.
•Able to write and maintain unit tests in RSpec and Jasmine
•Able to work closely with people throughout an organization, from coding teammates to teachers, administrators, and community members.
•Able to coordinate with multiple teammates working on the project
•Strong verbal and written communications skills - specifically including the ability to communicate complex technical concepts in a user-friendly way to educators
•Interest in thinking differently to solve critical problems in education
•Experience deploying, supporting, and troubleshooting applications and services in production environments
•Experience with data encryption and security of sensitive information
•Must be eligible to work in the United States

•Collaboratively refining and troubleshooting existing product features based on educator feedback
•Continuously monitoring and addressing security and privacy issues that arise
•Onboarding new districts to Student Insights including understanding how they use data and linking their student information system and other databases with Insights
•Collaboratively coding new features for Student Insights as well as maintaining and updating current functionality
•Working collaboratively with educators to refine initial concepts into product features and to understand how they can best use Insights to improve student outcomes
•Collaborating with part time teammates to ship new product features
•Interviewing and onboarding new team members
•Improving, maintaining and troubleshooting data integration into Student Insights from a variety of sources
•Documenting enhancements and issues on GitHub site
•User testing new features and modules with focus groups of teachers and administrators
•Assisting with creating and delivering professional training modules for educators

Terms of Employment:
Work Year: 210 days
Salary: $110,000
Funding Source: Boston Foundation Grant and Local Funds

Position Reports to: Coordinator of Elementary Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment

Should you need assistance with the online application process, please contact the Human Resources Office at 617-625-6600 ext. 6015.

Somerville Public Schools is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Somerville Public Schools actively seeks applicants with diverse backgrounds. Grade level and content licensure is required when applicable. Dual licensure including SPED, ESL, ELL, or bilingual licensure and/or proficiency in a language or languages other than English is preferred.

Project Background:
Student Insights is an open source application that was originally developed as a partnership in 2014 between Code for America and the Somerville Public Schools with support from Microsoft New England, Mass IT, and the Boston Foundation. In July 2017, it was provided with a $200,000 grant from the Boston Foundation to continue development and expand usage to more districts. In 2019, it was provided with another $250,00 grant from the Boston Foundation to focus on equity including building out an Equity and Opportunity Dashboard to help the district identify and address gaps in opportunities for students.

Currently the Student Insights tool is being used by 7 elementary/middle schools and the high school in Somerville, MA with a small team of contract developers making enhancements and adding new features. It is also being used in a few schools in New Bedford and being piloted in several schools in Bedford, Massachusetts.

The project is a Rails app with a Postgres database and a React frontend. There are background tasks that replicate data from the Aspen SIS system and STAR assessment system into the Postgres database. This enables rapid iteration and experimentation on new product features with minimal risk to these existing production systems. The Postgres database is the system of record for unique data captured by the Student Insights product (eg., notes from clinical meetings and information about targeted interventions that students are receiving). Authentication is handled by the district's LDAP service.

Student Insights imports data from a variety of existing district data sources, presents that data in a clear way that gives educators access to student information they couldn't see before, and then enables them to capture other information about how they're serving students with additional services and interventions. Features that are under development include supporting high school teachers meeting to strategize how to support students in their teams, views that help administrators identify where they can best support teachers and students, views that help educators pinpoint the needs of struggling readers along with interventions, and exploring how to incorporate features that directly target equity issues and more deeply incorporate student voice and student perspectives into how educators view students.

For more overall information about the project, please visit:

For more technical information about the project, please follow this link to view the GitHub site for Student Insights:

Position Type: Full-time
Positions Available: 1

Welcome to Somerville Public Schools!

Education - Inspiration - Excellence are the themes that characterize the instructional services, departments and programs of the Somerville Public Schools. Our Mission: The Somerville Public Schools is dedicated to the realization of the full intellectual, physical, social, and emotional potential of all students. Our talented team of teachers and other professionals provides every student with the knowledge, skills and attitudes needed to be successful throughout their lives. This is accomplished through the delivery of innovative instruction guided by the Massachusetts Curriculum and Somerville Curriculum Frameworks, and supported through partnerships with organizations such as Primary Source, and the Center for Engineering Education and Outreach at Tufts University.

Equal Opportunity Employer
Somerville Public Schools is committed to maintaining a work and learning environment free from discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, pregnancy, gender, sexual orientation, marital/civil union status, ancestry, place of birth, age, citizenship status, veteran status, political affiliation or disability, as defined and required by state and federal laws.

Job Requirements
  • Citizenship, residency or work VISA in United States required

  • Application Questions
    There are no application questions required for this job posting.

    Contact Information
    Uri Harel, Coordinator of Elementary Curriculum, K-8
    8 Bonair St
    Somerville, Massachusetts 02145
    Phone: 617-625-6600