Early Head Start Teacher
The Community Action Agency of Siouxland is committed to providing high quality services to families and ensuring school readiness for all enrolled children. This position must provide high-quality early education and child development services for enrolled children, including for children with disabilities that promote children’s cognitive, social, and emotional growth for later success in school. Individuals must serve as an effective role model and possess high quality standards. Children’s health and safety must be of high priority.
Supervisory Responsibilities: Yes
Essential Duties and Responsibilities:
- Adhere to Agency Personnel Policies, Head Start policies and procedures, Performance Standards, CACFP, and State
- Through a team teaching approach, provide responsive care, effective teaching, and an organized learning environment that promotes healthy development and children’s skill growth.
- Implement nurturing and responsive practices, interactions, and environments that foster trust and emotional security; are communication and language rich; promote critical thinking and problem-solving; provide supportive feedback for learning; motivate continued effort; and support all children’s engagement in learning experiences and activities.
- Implement developmentally appropriate, research-based early childhood curricula as chosen by the program, with fidelity.
- Utilize curricula to implement a well-organized learning environment with developmentally appropriate schedules, lesson plans, and indoor and outdoor learning experiences that provide adequate opportunities for choice, play, exploration, and experimentation among a variety of learning, sensory, and motor experiences.
- Implement developmentally appropriate learning experiences that help children progress in language, literacy, social and emotional development, math, science, social studies, creative arts, and physical development.
- Exhibit classroom control while promoting the use of positive behavioral interventions and supports and abiding by the program’s Behavior Management Policy.
- Conduct program mandated standardized and structured assessments for each child that provide ongoing information to evaluate the child’s developmental level and progress towards outcomes.
- Regularly utilize information from assessments and teacher observations to determine children’s strengths and needs to support individualized learning; integrate child assessment data in individual and group planning.
- Be a high quality language model. For dual language learners, recognize bilingualism and biliteracy as strengths and implement research-based teaching practices that support their development, including teaching practices that focus on the continued development of the home language for all children.
- Provide age-appropriate equipment, materials, supplies and physical space for indoor and outdoor learning environments, including necessary accommodations for children with disabilities. Materials must be changed intentionally and periodically to support children’s interests, development, and learning.
- Accommodate individual infant and toddler sleep schedules and follow safe sleep standards.
- Feed infants and toddlers according to their individual developmental readiness and feeding skills. Ensure infants and young toddlers are fed on demand to the extent possible; bottle-fed infants are never laid down to sleep with a bottle.
- Promote breastfeeding, including providing facilities to properly store and handle breast milk and make accommodations, as necessary, for mothers who wish to breastfeed during program hours.
- Implement family style snack and mealtimes that are structured and used as learning opportunities that foster communication and conversations that contribute to a child’s learning, development, and socialization; never using food as reward or punishment, or forcing a child to finish their food.
- Utilize transitions between activities and routines, such as hand washing, as opportunities for strengthening development, learning, and skill growth.
- Recognize physical activity as important to learning and integrate intentional movement and physical activity into curricular activities and daily routines in ways that support health and learning; never using physical activity as a reward or punishment.
- Ensure continuous classroom improvement by being an active participant in the coaching model, accepting constructive feedback, implementing action plans, working towards goals, and promoting positive change.
- In collaboration with each child’s parent complete a developmental screening to identify concerns regarding a child’s developmental, behavioral, motor, language, social, cognitive, and emotional skills within 45 calendar days of when the child first attends the program and additional screenings completed according to recommendations.
- If warranted through screening and additional relevant information such as assessment data, work closely with the Center Manager to facilitate necessary referral procedures.
- For children with disabilities, partner with parents and the local LEA to ensure delivery of IDEA services.
- Recognize parents’ roles as children’s lifelong educators and provide opportunities for parents and family members to be involved in the program’s education services.
- Communicate openly and regularly with parents to ensure they are well-informed about their child’s routines, activities, and behavior, assuring the confidentiality of communication.
- Hold parent teacher conferences, as needed, but no less than two times per program year, to enhance the parent’s knowledge and understanding of the child’s education and developmental progress and activities used in the program.
- Provide parents and family members opportunities to volunteer in the classroom.
- Inform parents about the purposes of and the results from screenings and assessments and discuss their child’s progress.
- Conduct at least two home visits per program year for each family, including one before the program year begins, if feasible, to engage the parents in the child’s learning and development.
- Complete a transition plan according to prescribed timelines for each child moving on to their next placement.
- Work to maintain a healthy classroom by conducting daily health checks as children arrive, promoting good hygiene, dealing with communicable diseases, completing daily cleaning responsibilities and administering medication if needed.
- Ensure the appropriate supervision and safety of children by abiding by the program’s Supervision Plan and Emergency Procedures, preventing and attending to injuries, and reporting suspected cases of child abuse.
- Accurately complete and submit paperwork when due, including fire/tornado drills, safety checklists, monthly parent/school readiness activities, in-kind forms, supply requests, classroom attendance, lesson plans, timesheets, classroom team meetings and other forms as needed.
- Supervise/monitor staff as applicable, while fostering a positive work environment that promotes teamwork and harmony.
- Have capability to lift 40 pounds of weight.
- Maintain regular and reliable attendance
Other duties as assigned. Duties described are intended to show the general nature and level of work being performed.
To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.
Ability to work with young children, high level of interest and concern for the young child, good communication skills to ensure effective interaction with parents and children. Must have access to vehicle and proof of valid insurance and driver’s license. Favorable results of a Motor Vehicle Record check and Background check are required. Must pass pre-employment physical exam. Will need to acquire certification in CPR, Mandatory Child Abuse Reporting, and First Aid within 90 days employment. Must have philosophical agreement with agency's mission, goals, and objectives.
Education and/or Experience:
- Teacher CDA (Level 6) – High School diploma/GED and a current infant/toddler center-based CDA credential (or attainment of the CDA credential within 12 months of hire); or a comparable certificate or credential that meets or exceeds the CDA credential.
- Teacher I (Level 7) – Associate degree in early childhood education or related field as well as training or coursework* with a focus on infant and toddler development (or attainment within 12 months of hire).
- Teacher II (Level 9) - Baccalaureate or advanced degree in early childhood education or related field as well as training or coursework* with a focus on infant and toddler development (or attainment within 12 months of hire).
*Training or coursework is 8 semester credits, 120 clock hours, or a combination of both. Training must be from an agency that has expertise in teacher preparation. Official documentation must be provided in the form of a certificate or letter on official letterhead. An infant/toddler center-based CDA credential meets this requirement.
To perform the job successfully, an individual should demonstrate the following competencies:
Respects and responds appropriately to the culture, language, values and family structures of each family served.
Empathy for low income individuals and the challenges they face.
Identifies and resolves problems in a timely manner.
Uses reason even when dealing with emotional topics.
Excellent time management.
Gives appropriate recognition to others.
Promotes a harassment-free environment.
Displays integrity and sound ethical judgment; upholds organizational values.