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School Mental Health Communications Consultant

School Mental Health Ontario

Job Description

School Mental Health Ontario (SMH-ON) works together with Ontario school districts to support student mental health.  As a provincial implementation support team, SMH-ON provides leadership, resources, implementation coaching and a community of practice in order to promote the uptake, scaling, and sustainability of evidence-informed, implementation-sensitive, identity-affirming and culturally responsive practices in school mental health.  SMH-ON serves the 60 English and 12 French school boards in Ontario, remote school authorities, and provincial and demonstration schools.  The team works alongside the Ministry of Education and has a role within the wider system of care, linking with partner ministries and organizations to advance child and youth mental health.   
We are currently seeking a dynamic communications professional for our Communication and Support Team (CAST) to assist with various projects to further support coherence across our growing mandate.  In this role, the Communications Consultant would help develop and execute effective communication strategies. This includes research, goal creation, content development, analysis and executing on all tactical requirements of the communications plan, – the complete integrated marketing communications approach. 
At SMH-ON, we recognize diversity as a source of organizational strength.  We welcome applications from those who have demonstrated a commitment to advancing student mental health with clear focus on human rights, and on reducing disproportionality and disparity in outcomes.  Those with experience in serving racialized communities, and those with identities that have been historically disadvantaged and marginalized, will bring particular assets that are highly valued within the organization. 
Contract position to August 31, 2023, with extension contingent on funding. 
This role includes, but is not limited to: 
  1. Prepare strategic communications plans and coordinate and implement communication strategies that support awareness and broad reach of SMH-ON messaging, resources, and training opportunities, and advance the work of board mental health leadership teams. 
  2. Consolidate communication processes for internal, school board, partner, student, parent/caregiver and public audiences and maintain the structures and protocols that ensure timely and reliable bi-directional communication.
  3. Provide ongoing website enhancements and updates, coordinate regular newsletters to school board and partner/subscriber audiences, maintain the private SMH-ON Leadership Portal, etc. 
  4. Prepare written communication and other content, in collaboration with SMH-ON team members (e.g., blog posts, articles, social media content, info sheets). Assist with revisions to and optimization of existing content as culturally-responsive reviews and evidence updates are conducted.  
  5. Manage a variety of time-sensitive projects that require creative and systematic communication using a range of media. Coordinate inputs related to web design, graphic design, video production, translation, etc. to ensure high-quality, brand-aligned, AODA-compliant, bilingual resources that are relevant and responsive for all Ontario school boards and students.
  6. Co-develop and implement an integrated marketing calendar with multi-channel segments that aligns with and maximizes the digital content strategy. 
  7. Gather key performance data and perform post-campaign reviews and analytics as needed.  
  8. Support the development of a content inventory and archiving system, and other administrative duties (such as: updating and finalizing pdf resources, listserv management, etc.) , as required. 
  9. Help with internal team communication processes and supports that can assist with coherence and integration across our growing mandate. Build on the strengths of the team, and help SMH-ON to maintain our core values of: inclusion, kindness, honesty, respect, growth and collaboration.   


Qualifications / Experience
  • An undergraduate degree or diploma in communications, journalism, public relations or related field, or equivalent education and experience.   
  • Minimum of five (5) years' experience as a communications and public relations professional, ideally gained in a Canadian school board or mental health services setting.
  • Interest in, and understanding of, the role of schools in supporting student mental health. Strong experience and confidence with communication and issues management focused on mental health and mental illness. Appreciation for the sensitivities involved, and the need for personal resiliency when dealing with difficult topics.
  • Strong understanding of anti-racist/ anti-oppressive, practices and how communication can serve to advance equity and mental health. Experience engaging with and amplifying the voices of those who are racialized, marginalized, and/or oppressed.  Confidence and fluency with identity-affirming language and approaches are needed for this role.
  • Demonstrated competence with the development and execution of effective and targeted communication plans. Excellent project coordination skills, with strong ability to anticipate needs and to draw in specific expertise as needed, to meet demanding timelines. 
  • Strong technical skills across a variety of media. The ability to optimize web and other digital platforms to advance messaging and resource dissemination is an essential part of this role. Experience working with WordPress, Adobe  and email marketing tools such as Active Campaign, is required. Knowledge of google analytics and methods for optimizing uptake of mental health information ensures ongoing quality improvement, a key driver for SMH-ON. Comfort with web meeting and webinar formats for communication with stakeholders.
  • Strong writing, editing, and proofreading skills. Experience writing for a range of education audiences is an asset. Writing samples will be requested from those short-listed for an interview.
  • Excellent oral and visual presentation skills are critical for success in this role. Bilingualism (English/French) is a considered a strong asset. 
  • Highly developed interpersonal skills with the ability to build collaborative working relationships and to provide exemplary service to internal and external stakeholders.

How To Apply

Deadline for submission is 4:00 p.m. on March 24th 2023

Please apply to: [email protected]  (Include the position title you are applying for in the   subject line of your email)