Director, UNRWA Department of Education

Amman, Jordan
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Director, UNRWA Department of Education

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Director, UNRWA Department of Education

Post Number : 5JOED0001RP

Grade : D-2

Type of contract : Fixed Term

Duration of contract : 2 years with possibility of renewal

Application Deadline (Midnight Paris Time) : 09-SEP-2022

UNESCO, in close collaboration with UNRWA, is currently seeking a pro-active, visionary Director for the UNRWA Department of Education. The right candidate will be an experienced leader, able to foster trust through an inclusive approach and to inspire others.

In conformity with the Memoranda of Understanding between the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) and UNESCO, UNESCO shall provide high-level management support to UNRWA through the inter-agency transfer of a staff member at D-2 level in accordance with UNESCO’s and UNRWA’s Staff Rules and Regulations and with the Inter-Organization Agreement concerning Transfer, Secondment or Loan of Staff among the Organizations applying the United Nations Common System of Salaries and Allowances.

In compliance with these terms, the Director of Education will be under the authority of the Commissioner-General of UNRWA and under the direct supervision of the Deputy Commissioner General for the substantive aspects of the programme.

The Director of Education at UNRWA provides strategic leadership to a large and complex system of basic, secondary, technical, vocational and teacher-degree level education to over 540,000 Palestine refugee children and young people in five Fields of Operation: Lebanon, the Syrian Arab Republic, Jordan, West Bank and Gaza.

She/he will provide strategic leadership and technical support over the UNRWA Education Programme across the locations covered. She/he will provide day-to-day overall leadership to the education staff at UNRWA’s Headquarters and ensure technical leadership to the Chiefs of Education of the different locations.

The incumbent will be a member of UNRWA’s Executive Advisory Group (EAG) and the Senior Management Team (SMT), supporting the Agency in its overall planning and reporting processes, advocacy, and the implementation of any reforms taking place in UNRWA, and will participate in Leadership Team of UNESCO’s Education Sector.

Specifically, the incumbent shall:

  • Strategically direct the UNRWA Education Programme, with the objective of improving access, quality, equity, and inclusivity of education for Palestine refugees.
  • Serve as authoritative adviser to the UNRWA Commissioner-General and Executive Office on all aspects of the Education Programme and in response to challenges and opportunities, based on the strategic orientations, priorities, and positions in the field of education set by UNRWA and UNESCO.
  • Constantly liaise with UNESCO in order to ensure coherence in the provision of support to Palestine refugees in the field of education, based on UNESCO’s data, practices, guidelines and positions.
  • Oversee and support the strategic and technical perspective of operational decisions in all locations, and with regards to over 700 schools and 8 vocational training centres and two teacher training institutions.
  • Provide strategic vision and guidance to ensure that the Education Programme is managed in a cohesive and integrated way, on the basis of available funds and in conformity with relevant UNRWA policies, rules and regulations.
  • Lead on the UNRWA Agency-wide reporting and analysis with regards to technical support to the Field, collection and quality assurance of data, in line with Agency monitoring frameworks.
  • As a member of the UNRWA Executive Advisory Group and the Senior Management Team, participate in the formulation of the general UNRWA policy, planning and reporting mechanisms.
  • Provide strategic leadership on the further development and implementation of UNRWA ICT for Education (ICT4E) Strategy under the umbrella of the Agency’s Digital Transformation Strategy.
  • Provide advice to UNESCO in matters relating to education for Palestine refugees and Education in Emergencies (EiE).
  • Establish, develop, and maintain working relations with key partners, most specifically Host Countries, other United Nations agencies, INGOs, other partners of UNRWA and UNESCO, to share and promote the work of UNRWA and to contribute to broader educational development.
  • Maintain motivated and effective staff in the department for the purpose of formulating, planning, implementing, monitoring and evaluating its programmes.

Required Qualifications


  • Advanced university degree (Master’s or equivalent) in education, education planning or related social sciences fields.

Work Experience

  • Minimum 15 years of progressively responsible relevant professional experience in the field of education both at national and international level, of which several years of experience in senior management positions.
  • Experience in resources mobilization and partnership development.

Skills and Competencies

  • Strong commitment to the mandate, vision and priorities of UNESCO and UNRWA.
  • Sound understanding of regional/international political trends, and United Nations, UNESCO and UNRWA policy and practice, within the larger context of humanitarian and development agencies in general.
  • Knowledge of education systems in different countries, including the Arab Region.
  • Excellent understanding of global trends and developments in education, including the Education 2020 Agenda.
  • Proven intellectual leadership and managerial skills, as well as capacity to motivate multidisciplinary teams in a multicultural environment and ensure coaching and development of staff.
  • Broad general culture and sound analytical capacities, high sense of objectivity, professional integrity and political astuteness.
  • Demonstrated strategic planning, management skills and capacity to administer financial resources.
  • Demonstrated proficiency in introducing innovation and change to enhance capacity and programme effectiveness.
  • Demonstrated interpersonal skills and ability to communicate effectively and persuasively, orally and in writing, with strong representational abilities in national, regional and international settings.


  • Excellent knowledge (written and spoken) of English.

Desirable Qualifications


  • A PhD in education or other related social science fields.

Work experience

  • Experience in the field of international relations and diplomacy, multilateral cooperation and development.
  • Experience within the United Nations system.
  • Strong global professional network.


  • Knowledge (written and spoken) of Arabic and/or French.
  • Knowledge of other official languages of UNESCO (Chinese, Russian or Spanish).

Benefits and Entitlements

UNESCO’s salaries consist of a basic salary and other benefits which may include if applicable: 30 days annual leave, family allowance, medical insurance, pension plan etc. The approximate annual starting salary for this position is US  $167,297.

For full information on benefits and entitlements, please consult our Guide to Staff Benefits.

UNRWA is a non-smoking work environment.

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