Location and Job Title:
Director of Early Childhood Education
Commonpoint Queens - Samuel Field Y
58-20 Little Neck Parkway
Little Neck, NY 11362
Commonpoint Queens' mission is to sustain and enhance the quality of family and individual life for all members of our community, regardless of religion, ethnic or cultural background, national origin, gender identity or expression, sexual preference, age, or disability, within a pervasive and inclusive environment that facilitates individual growth, meets individual needs and builds community. We accomplish this mission through a broad range of social, educational, and recreational services that reach community members of all ages and backgrounds.
Statement of the Job
Commonpoint Queens is seeking a visionary, theoretically sound educator to become the Director of Early Childhood Education who will build upon our high level of quality and success. The Director will possess creativity, energy, passion, and strong management skills to actively promote a comfortable and nurturing environment where every child, teacher, and family is treated with dignity and respect in a friendly, personalized manner. In our 0-3 programming, Jewish holidays and weekly Shabbat are important components of the curriculum. Our 4 year old program is funded by the NYC Department of Education, and adheres to NYC curriculum requirements and guidelines. In a typical school year, the school hosts three UPK classrooms and three to four nursery school classrooms.
Our Early Childhood Center Philosophy and Goals:
Our Preschool/Toddler Program provides developmentally appropriate opportunities for children to socialize and learn together. Our primary objective is to foster the social, emotional, physical and cognitive growth of each child. Our child-centered curriculum is built upon observing and understanding each child's individual skill and interest level, and basing the curriculum on those observations. We encourage curiosity and enthusiasm through exploration and discovery. Our nurturing atmosphere allows for the development of self-confidence, self-respect and concern for others. Additionally, through play, children learn the values of friendship, honesty, sharing responsibility, and cooperation. We strive to prepare children with the knowledge and skills necessary to enter their next stage of development and education with confidence and an enthusiasm for learning.
The Early Childhood Director's main responsibilities include:
Program and Curriculum Development:
- Lead and direct the design and implementation of a developmentally appropriate curriculum and learning environment, while incorporating best practices, current pedigological research, and Jewish values. Insure curriculum for four year olds meets NYC Department expectations around individual and group learning experiences, and the appropriate use of learning centers.
- Partner with teaching staff on learning about current curriculum beliefs and practices, creating classroom environments, classroom expectations and accountability, and developmentally appropriate learning goals, guidelines, and assessments.
- Promote a nurturing and engaging program and atmosphere that reflects respect and compassion for all children, families, and staff.
- Invite parents, volunteer leaders, and other interested groups to participate and communicate in order to promote program successes, and effectiveness.
- Utilize expertise in child development to coordinate teachers, parents, and if necessary, diagnostic professionals to respond to specific and individual student needs.
Staff Supervision and Development:
- Execute on all aspects of personnel management, including but not limited to, recruitment, hiring, supervising, work planning, evaluating, and discipline.
- Plan and implement staff orientation and staff meetings.
- Serve as a mentor to teachers and staff, and actively facilitate professional development by creating opportunities for staff to learn in formal and informal settings. Professional development opportunities should be in accordance with New York State and New York City standards as well as the professional interests and goals of each individual staff member.
- Ensure staff is informed, involved, and integrated in the development and implementation of program outcomes and objectives, as well as individual goals and objectives.
- Complete weekly observations of 20 minutes or more in each classroom and provide instructional staff within each classroom written feedback that ties observations to programmatic and professional goals. These goals should be aligned to expectations set forth in ECR-S and CLASS classroom assessment tools.
- Leverage the strengths of others to develop an effective team while inspiring and fostering camaraderie, collegiality, and teamwork.
Relationships with Parents and Families:
- Form warm and caring relationships with children and their parents and caregivers that honor the importance of all individuals in the community.
- Effectively communicate the mission, vision, and goals of our programs - and greater Commonpoint Queens agency - to parents and families.
- Act as a resource for consultation and guidance regarding parenting, child development, and education.
- Communicate with parents regarding their child's progress, developmental or behavioral concerns, or class placements, as necessary. Facilitate conversations relative to child evaluations for special services as needed.
- Insure teaching staff provides daily communication with families, both in person at drop off and pick up, as well as electronically via various communication platforms at their disposal.
- Assist and guide children and families with holiday celebrations and Jewish family education.
- Provide tours to new families, representing the vision, goals, and uniqueness of the school and agency. Be able to articulate the advantages of the program to these families in order to sell a fee for service nursery school product and Universal Pre-Kindergarten experience in the context of significant market competition.
- Exhibit respectful, fair, honest, supportive, and positive behaviors in all interactions with parents and families, including welcoming people into the Early Childhood programming, as well as accepting and appreciating diversity amongst all community members.
- Partner with agency marketing staff to provide effective marketing and outreach to continually introduce the school to the community and attract new families/encourage enrollment in our school and programs, including creating opportunities for Early Childhood Center staff and volunteers to be out in the community.
- Oversee the physical environment of the school, including classroom configuration and choices related to all furniture, supplies, materials, and displays of children's work.
- Lead, manage, implement, and monitor long and short term strategic plans including specific outcomes for program performance, enhancement, growth, and reporting.
- Design and manage the administrative support systems that ensure the curriculum and all programs align with the vision of the center.
- Develop, implement, and monitor annual program budgets through effective financial management and planning, including grants and fundraising efforts to enhance the program and facilities.
- Develop program fee structures that are consistent with the program value, educational market, and competitor school offerings.
- Maintain program compliance with NYC DOH licensing to ensure the health and safety of all children, and seek and receive certification from the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC).
- Work collaboratively with other internal departments and community organizations to allow for the continuity of Jewish life of the families and children and to encourage retention of their connection to the larger agency.
- Supervise and review the implementation of NYC DOE and thematic based curriculum via documented classroom observations.
- Act as a liaison between the site's appointed NYC DOE Instructional Coordinator and the teaching staff ensuring that all goals are being met.
- Assist teachers in the implementation of family communication and classroom assessment systems (ie, Google Classroom, Zoom, Tadpoles and Teaching Strategies Gold). Establish productive relationships with agency IT personnel to support these initiatives, as well as insure appropriate technology in the classrooms to facilitate early childhood education.
- Execute identified steps towards improvement on program performance on the ERC-S scale.
- M.A, in Early Childhood Education and a State Department of Education teacher certification in Early Childhood Education (B-2) or (N,K, Grades 1-6).
- Minimum of five years of teaching experience in an Early Childhood Program and three years of supervisory experience in a comparable setting.
- Complies with all Agency, State, City, and Federal regulations for a person working in an Early Childhood setting.
- Highly knowledgeable in working with Google Suite and NYC DOE computer systems
- RTE certification preferred
- Able to lift approximately 40 pounds from floor to waist high.
- Able to travel between sites within the agency.
Commonpoint Queens is an equal opportunity employer/program.
Commonpoint Queens is a non-profit, multi service agency with a flagship site in Forest Hills and 33 additional sites throughout the community that provides a diverse array of programs and services to over 35,000. Our mission is to sustain and enhance the quality of family and individual life for all members of our community, regardless of religion, ethnic or cultural background, national origin, gender identity or expression, sexual preference, age, or disability, within a pervasive and inclusive environment that facilitates individual growth, meets individual needs and builds community. We accomplish this mission through a broad range of social, educational, and recreational services that reach community members of all ages and backgrounds.