Head Teacher Job Description Policy Number and Last Update
(01.04.05/01-2011)

Title:  Head Teacher

Responsible To:  Head Start Director

Supervises:Education staff

FLSA:Non-exempt

General Summary

Under the direction of the Head Start Director, assists in overseeing and directing the planning, organizing, and implementation of education services for children, in addition to part time classroom teacher duties which include: Developing and implementing individual educational plans for children.

Qualifications and Requirements:

The Head Teacher must have:

  1. A degree in early childhood education or child development (Bachelor's preferred); or
  2. An age-appropriate CDA or State equivalent credential; or
  3. An Associate Degree in a related field, such as Family & Child studies, elementary education, with at least 18 credit hours in early childhood education; or
  4. A baccalaureate or advanced degree in any field, at least 18 credit hours in early childhood education, and experience teaching children in the age range for which she/he is applying for;
  5. Have knowledge and experience in the philosophy and practices of Head Start (or comparable child development programs), early childhood education, developmentally appropriate practice, and bilingual education;
  6. Experience with migrant farm workers (preferred Spanish-speaking);
  7. Proof of a physical examination within the last six months, which includes a tuberculosis test, and comply with other background checks as required by the Agency and/or DCFS licensing;
  8. Personal qualifications as required in Part 407: Licensing Standards for Day Care Centers, emotional maturity, willingness to cooperate with the aims of the program, respect for children and adults, flexibility, patience, good personal hygiene, and physical and mental health which does not interfere with responsibilities; and
  9. An education or experience in collaborating with parents in the education of their children.

Essential Functions and Responsibilities:

  1. Participate in grantee and delegate component pre-service training; Implement IMSHS curricula in the classroom;
  2. Perform the functions of this position with a strong understanding of the Head Start Performance Standards and the component plans; and thorough knowledge and application of Developmentally Appropriate Practices;
  3. Guide and facilitate activities of the children, including: daily activities, field trips, selecting and arranging equipment and materials in the classroom;
  4. Cooperate with other staff and classroom groups to maintain the smooth functioning of the center, which at times may require changes to meet the needs of the children;
  5. Maintain a comprehensive and ongoing portfolio assessment for each child, including weekly observations in each area, examples of the child's work, and a developmental assessment, completed as per IMSHS procedure;
  6. Use home visits and parent conferences to discuss the child's individual development and progress, assist the parents in developing observational skills and solicit parent observations;
  7. Eat with and assist children in development of social and self-help skills, and sound nutritional practices;
  8. Meet bi-weekly with director and coordinators to exchange information pertinent to the identification and services of children with disabilities;
  9. Meet with the mental health consultant monthly to discuss mental health needs of children;
  10. Guide children's acquisition of social skills;
  11. Attend staff training and meetings, and board and parent meetings as requested;
  12. Works with Teachers, Teacher Assistant and volunteers to use and develop their skills and abilities in planning and carrying out classroom activities;
  13. Maintain a safe and healthy classroom environment. Assure that classroom equipment, furniture, materials, and supplies are properly maintained and stored;
  14. Use the playground as an extension of the classroom; assures that the playground is safe;
  15. Assist in conducting the daily health and environment checklist;
  16. Assist in implementing children's I.E.P. (Individual Education Plan) or I.F.S.P. (Individual Family Service Plan) seeking clarification for any aspects that are not well understood;
  17. Assist in recruiting and orienting volunteers, providing them with guidance as needed,
  18. Complete and submit required forms and records in a timely and accurate fashion, e.g., lesson plans, time sheets, meal reports etc.;
  19. Oversight:
    1. Review teachers' lesson plans, schedules, room arrangements and portfolio assessments to assure their accordance with IMSHS requirements;
    2. Deliver pre-service and monthly in-service training sessions to teaching staff;
    3. Provide a minimum of two child development workshops to parents;
    4. Identify and prioritize materials and equipment needed in classrooms and playgrounds, and coordinate with director in making purchases;
    5. Lead responsibility for implementing Family Literacy Program;
    6. Lead responsibility for parent involvement in education services as per HS requirements;
    7. Coordinate the transition of children to Kindergarten and/or child care programs.
  20. Actively participate in the development and implementation of the Teacher professional development plan;
  21. Assure that files are complete, accurate, and confidentially maintained; and
  22. Perform other duties, as may be required.

The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work performed by a person in this position. They are not to be construed as an exhaustive list of all duties that may be performed in such a position.

Additional Requirements:

  1. Requires ability to use abstract reasoning, problem solving, planning, and analytical skills in: Training, evaluation, and program development;
  2. Requires effective interpersonal and oral communication skills for supervisory duties;
  3. Requires effective writing and oral communication skills to conduct meetings and training sessions, and to prepare reports that are clear, complete, comprehensive, and use good grammar and punctuation;
  4. Successful experience working in a team setting,
  5. Ability to present a positive image of the organization to members of the community;
  6. Visual and auditory acuity within professionally determined normal ranges, with correction if need;
  7. Manual dexterity sufficient to operate a computer and office equipment, including, but not limited to, the telephone, fax machine, copier, and tape recorder;
  8. Must be able to lift 55 pounds;
  9. Must be able to travel;
  10. Must be able to enter and exit a vehicle without assistance, and withstand exposure to adverse weather conditions; and
  11. Experience successfully working with a culturally diverse staff and clients.

Working Conditions:

  1. Possible exposure to blood and bodily fluids or tissues;
  2. Possible exposure to communicable diseases;
  3. Job requires sitting for long period of time (during planning and reporting) and standing for long periods of time (during observations and training), as well as stooping, squatting, and running;
  4. A moderate amount of driving is required.