Staff Attorney - Davenport Community Schools Project

Authored By: Iowa Legal Aid LSC Funded


Iowa Legal Aid is seeking an energetic and creative attorney to join our new Davenport Community Schools Project. 


Position: Iowa Legal Aid has a Staff Attorney opening in its HELP Regional Office in Davenport.  The attorney will have principal responsibility for working in conjunction with the Executive Director and other staff to establish a new program with the Davenport Public Schools, including the establishment of a new legal aid clinic on site in an elementary school in the Davenport School District. 


The Davenport Schools Project:  Children living in poverty face special challenges in school because they often lack basic needs such as stable housing, food and income security and physical safety.  These destabilizing conditions are known to cause poor outcomes in school.


The Davenport Community Schools Project, an innovative partnership between Iowa Legal Aid, Davenport Public Schools and many other stakeholders, is designed to alleviate these problems and achieve meaningful change.  We will take a new approach to service delivery that focuses on stabilizing the family in multiple areas rather than just one area of crisis.  We will work inside and outside the school helping families cope with legal issues related to housing, domestic violence, and income security, all which impact school attendance, performance and disciplinary issues.  We will also partner with other social services organizations in the community to help connect families with a wide variety of services and resources.


The cornerstone of the project will be our onsite legal aid clinic in a Davenport elementary school.  Our attorneys will meet with school families on a regular basis.  It is anticipated that the clinic will be staffed in part with volunteer attorneys.  We are seeking a new attorney to coordinate this exciting project.


Project Responsibilities: The successful candidate will be responsible for developing and implementing the project.  Building upon the considerable groundwork already laid by Iowa Legal Aid staff, the new Staff Attorney will help launch the opening of the onsite legal clinic and build the project to full scale.  Responsibilities include coordinating with school staff and existing and future project partners and coordinating the activities of legal, social work and other volunteers.


General Responsibilities: Staff Attorneys provide free legal assistance and community legal education to low-income people.  Assistance ranges from providing counsel and advice to representation before various agencies and courts.  Areas of priority established by Iowa Legal Aid’s Board of Directors include income maintenance programs, housing, health care, domestic violence, education, individual rights and selected consumer issues. 


Qualifications: Applicants must be graduates of law school and licensed to practice law in Iowa, be eligible for admission on motion or be available for the next scheduled bar examination.  Prior experience in the practice of law or working with poverty law issues is preferred.  Applicants must possess a demonstrated interest in poverty law and have a strong commitment to providing a full range of legal services to low-income people.  Individuals with bilingual skills are encouraged to apply. 


Opening/Closing DateApplications are accepted on an ongoing basis.


Salary/Benefits: Entry level salary is $46,114. Due to recent bargaining, salaries are expected to increase roughly $3,000 in 2021. Non-entry level salaries are dependent on experience.  Excellent fringe benefits.


Applications: To apply, submit letter of application (indicate geographic restrictions), resume, law school transcript (recent graduates only), recent representative writing sample, and names, addresses and phone numbers of at least three professional references to:


Attn:  Arlys Kness

Iowa Legal Aid

1111 Ninth Street, Suite 230

Des Moines, Iowa  50314-2527




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