GENERAL DESCRIPTION OF POSITION
Provides direct care to children experiencing trauma to support their educational growth and experiences. Partner with staff to ensure the program provides quality and developmentally appropriate services to children and families and establish a work climate that nurtures growth, learning, and positive interaction while ensuring that all center regulations as mandated by Vogel Alcove Operational Procedures, NAEYC Standards, Head Start Performance Standards and TX Minimum Standards are maintained at all times. Promotes the social-emotional development of all children by prevention and/or interventions of problems that interfere with the tasks of learning. This will be done with close collaboration between case managers, parents, developmental and behavioral staff, and leaders in the organization. The employee in this position is expected to become familiar with the concepts of The Pyramid Model, Conscious Discipline, and Trauma-Informed Care or other theoretical models which inform care at Vogel Alcove.
- Promote and model excellence in daily program operations that support the provision of quality services for children and families, and a therapeutic learning environment where all staff can thrive; Interact and communicate with children in an age appropriate and developmentally responsive manner; Individualize interactions to a child’s special talents, interest, individual style, abilities, pace of learning and cultural/family background.
- Responsible for daily modeling for other center staff, volunteers, and families of best practices on caregiving and engaging young children.
- Basic care for the needs of children including but not limited to diapering and toileting, feeding and family style dining, napping and daily routines
- Coordinate food and nutrition activities with the Kitchen Manager, Gardener, Enrichment Coordinator, and/or Nurse to ensure quality learning experiences indoors and outdoors.
- Create and implement developmentally appropriate weekly lesson plans with activities individualized for the children in the classroom by using assessment information and observations.
- Manage multiple forms of on-going, developmentally appropriate assessments and utilize the information to plan activities and set goals. Share assessment outcomes with families.
- Implement and maintain the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) Standards and Criteria, Head Start Performance Standards, Agency and Department Policies and Procedures, TX State Licensing minimum standards and early childhood best practices, CACFP Feeding Guidelines, Positive Behavior Support (PBS) strategies, Conscious Discipline strategies (including baby doll circle time and classroom commitments), monthly Reflective Supervision sessions, daily Frog Street Press Curriculum lesson plans and activities, Second Step lessons, and weekly Farm to Preschool activities.
- Continually assess both child behavior and classroom management strategies, with emphasis on preventive practices to ensure that children acquire social/emotional skills needed to become successful in the classroom community.
- Utilize Positive Behavior Support (PBS) and Conscious Discipline strategies to prevent and reduce challenging behaviors in the classroom. Implement skills and strategies in a classroom setting with children whose challenging behaviors require intensive interventions. Participate in Behavior Intervention Plan (BIP) meetings, as needed.
- Collaborate with licensed therapists (ST, OT, PT) for children with developmental delays to increase skill development and mastery; Participate in developmental, behavioral, and mental health clinical consultations to support enrolled children and their families.
- Responsible for completion of required data entry in agency approved data systems, for example HiMama, KidKare, TECPDS, and HSGDcis are current systems we use.
- Facilitate classroom team meetings. Team meetings include lesson planning, zoning discussions, upcoming tasks that need completed, guiding the problem-solving process and/or seeking assistance to assure delivery of quality services.
- Ensure that children’s allergy/dietary/medical needs are being met while in care; follow health plans for those that have one.
- Complete necessary forms and documentation relevant to program and staff management.
- Conduct home visits and parent teacher conferences. Provide child progress report during parent teacher conferences, home visits and/or upon request of parent. Assist families with creating school readiness and social emotional goals for their child, along with planning activities to aid in meeting these goals.
- Set up a developmentally appropriate classroom based on Head Start Performance Standards-using Frog Street, Environmental Rating Scales (ERS) system, PBS (Positive Behavior Support) and other identified strategies with assistance from the early childhood director/assistant director.
- Make the appropriate referrals to the Developmental and Behavioral Services Director, as needed.
- Maintain dependable, punctual attendance, and adhere to appropriate break times.
- Attend mandatory In-Service trainings and staff meetings.
- Maintain required training hours and courses annually.
- Adapt and respond to changing and challenging conditions in ways that enhance the program quality of Vogel Alcove.
- Understand and know the signs of abuse and neglect; Responsibility to report any suspected abuse or neglect to appropriate authority.
- Maintain daily written and oral communication with families.
- Address all family concerns and grievances according to Vogel Alcove policy.
- Conduct Quarterly Conferences to create a home/school collaborative team to support both the child and the classroom.
- Develop and maintain high quality collaborative relationships with all stakeholders: teaching staff, case management, families, parents, therapists, and community partners, etc.
- Participate in all regularly scheduled staff and departmental meetings as well as trainings.
- Be available to travel within the DFW area for the occasional off-site professional development training or conference.
- Maintain and assure confidentiality and privacy of Vogel Alcove clients
- Uphold and promote the cultural fundamentals and mission statement of Vogel Alcove
- Support management decisions both in actions and words.
- Other duties, responsibilities and activities assigned as appropriate to maintain quality services, fiscal accountability, and overall operations of the organization.
PHYSICAL REQUIREMENTS/WORK ENVIRONMENT
The physical demands and work environment described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions. • Reach with hands and arms; Able to lift at least 40 lbs.; Able to walk, kneel, stoop, bend, and sit on floor. • Required vision abilities include close vision, distance vision, peripheral vision, depth perception and ability to adjust focus. • Manage working in occasional high-stress, high noise environment. • Have the physical strength and stamina to work with children energetically. • Function in a varied work environment indoors and outdoors. • Occasional exposure to wet and/or humid conditions. • Outside weather conditions. • Extreme cold and extreme heat. The duties listed above are intended only as illustrations of the various types of work that may be performed.
KNOWLEDGE AND EXPERIENCE
- Effective verbal and written communication skills.
- Ability to empathize, understand, and engage target populations.
- Strong technology and organizational skills.
- Reliable, punctual, resourceful, self-initiated, follows through on task.
- Willingness and ability to work autonomously and maintain accountability.
- Seek and utilize supervision appropriately.
- Ability to manage a complex workload. Willingness and ability to work with diverse populations.
- Superior interpersonal skills. Ability to get along with diverse personalities; tactful, mature, and flexible.
- Ability to meet and deal tactfully with the general public and to communicate effectively and clearly both orally and in writing.
- Ability to establish and maintain positive, effective working relationships with co-workers, community partners, and customers.
- Ability to learn and adapt.
- Follow Vogel Alcove Ethical Code of Conduct & NAEYC Code of Ethical Conduct Guidelines.
- Maintain Professional Development Plan.
- Participate and contribute the early childhood community learning.
- Work assigned work hours and make all requests for time off according to the Vogel Alcove procedures set forth.