Executive Director, The Caring Center
Posted by The Caring Center on November 2, 2015
The Caring Center
Located in Philadelphia, The Caring Center (the “Center”) is an independent, not-for- profit organization formed by parents and professional staff to deliver exemplary early childhood education and promote family and community development. A nationally accredited independent child care center and academic school for children six weeks to eight years of age, the Center serves over 180 children and has a staff of approximately 50 employees, with a total operating budget in excess of $2.5MM. Established in 1990, the Center was one of the first five institutions in the Delaware Valley to meet the rigorous, voluntary accreditation standards of the National Association for the Education of Young Children’s (NAEYC) Early Childhood Academy and recently received re- accreditation for another five years. In August 2009, an Enrichment Center serving preschool, kindergarten and school age students opened adjacent to the main building.
The Center has also achieved Four Stars (the highest designation) in Pennsylvania’s “Keystone Stars” Early Childhood Learning Initiative. Since 1993, several Caring Center teachers have won the prestigious Tylenol & Terri Lynne Lokoff Child Care Foundation National Child Care Teacher Award.
In 2003, the Center was a recipient of the “Best Place to Work Award” from the Delaware Valley Association for the Education of Young Children. The Center maintains an affiliate license for the Raising a Reader Program, a national book-lending program, as a tool to promote early literacy at the Center and to assist other local programs interested in improving and supporting early literacy. The Center is located in the growing University City District of Philadelphia adjacent to the campuses of Drexel University and the University of Pennsylvania and historically has maintained numerous ties to these key community institutions. The Center is located in a federally designated “Promise Zone” which provides enhanced opportunities for attaining federal grants and incentivizes private investment in the neighborhood, and within the target improvement zone identified by the West Philadelphia Early Childhood Education Initiative (led by the William Penn Foundation and Drexel University) which aims to improve early childhood educational opportunities in West Philadelphia.
The Center promotes children’s development of basic skills, self-confidence, respect, caring for others and social skills, and children attending the Center prepare for the adventure and excitement of formal education through a carefully developed program of age appropriate activities. Each child’s development is reviewed with their family on a regular basis. The Center is cognizant of its multiculturalism and purposefully encourages the skills necessary for children to thrive among a diverse group of people. The Center works to ensure that each child feels valued while in its care. The program nurtures and encourages the cognitive, social, literacy and emotional growth of each child and fosters a lifelong love of learning. Activities are planned with a keen focus on the development of each age group and are aligned with the Pennsylvania Early Learning Standards.
This is an exceptional opportunity to lead and be the face of an exemplary organization that has made and will continue to make a remarkable and tangible impact on the lives of children, families and the community. The Executive Director reports directly to the Board of Directors, and with input from staff, determines and ensures execution of the overall organizational vision, strategic direction, and operating and fiscal policies to ensure successful fulfillment of the Center’s mission. S/he will continue to strengthen the Center’s already excellent reputation – build, maintain and nurture a network of influential constituents relevant to the Center’s mission and continue to develop cohesion and visibility. The Executive Director leads the overall curriculum, prepares and manages the budget, operations, quality and continuity of staffing and fund development of the school. The Executive Director will be responsible for overall operations of the School as well as the managing of external relationships, in addition to maintaining all licenses and accreditations. Acting as the ambassador of the School, the Executive Director will be responsible for advocating for the School and for staff with such organizations as NYAEYC, DVAEYC, and the School District of Philadelphia — as well as other local and national organizations. The Executive Director will work with the Board in the development and implementation of the strategic plan. S/he will be dynamic and innovative while paying close attention to curriculum and activities.
Specific Responsibilities Include:
• Locate appropriate training opportunities and make accommodations for staff development.
• Interview and recommend hiring of teaching, support and administrative staff.
• Mentor, coach and evaluate staff.
• Cultivate a positive culture among staff.
• Creatively manage staffing (including with the use of student interns and part-time staff) to adhere to mandatory student-teacher ratios while preserving ability to respond with dynamism to enrollment trends.
Children and Families:
• Confer with parents regarding School activities, policies, and enrollment procedures.
• Possess the demeanor, flexibility and personal characteristics to relate to the broadest cross section of the school’s constituencies.
• Cultivate a positive culture in the school community.
• Work with financial team to prepare annual budgets that reflect a year-over-year plan to steadily build and maintain a best-practices operating reserve for the Center.
• Create, develop, and implement a robust enrollment management strategy leveraging new and existing partnerships.
• Enroll families and keep clear communication with parents, making sure they understand the program while advising them of scheduling and implementation new policies and procedures.
• Oversee and have ultimate responsibility for billing, budgeting, marketing, advertising, purchasing, and collaborating with community agencies.
• Be responsible for grants and contracts-management.
• Keep abreast of licensure requirements, certification, and accreditation matters and policy changes.
• Maintain and articulate to a variety of constituents the Center’s unique value, culture and business proposition.
• Participate in state, local and national initiatives to advance The Caring Center’s mission.
• Fundraising will be expected. Cultivate and maintain a network of donors and supporters of the Center.
• Together with the Board, scan and respond to changes in the external marketplace for high quality early childhood care and education.
• Bachelor’s (or higher) degree in Early Childhood Education, Child Development or related field is preferred along with post graduate qualifications.
• Minimum of five years of administrative experience in a school, non-profit organization or corporation.
• Fundraising experience is required.
• Possession of (or willingness to timely achieve) all Director certifications required to maintain NAEYC and Keystone Stars accreditations.
• Strong commitment to early childhood education and an overall love of learning.
• Knowledge of Philadelphia early childhood education and education funding landscape a plus.
• Work history evidencing leadership, imagination and initiative in creatively moving an organization through turnaround, change and growth.
• Forward thinking and flexible in an ever changing political and economic climate.
• High energy, and the ability to motivate, lead and inspire Board, staff, and collaborating partners.
• Exemplary relationship building, identity building and influencing skills.
• Exceptional communicator, internally and externally, both orally and in writing; ability to distill varied sources of information and communicate clearly and effectively with multiple constituencies, including media and funders.
• Financial, operational, and programmatic skills.
• Proven success in executive or senior management within relevant organization.
• Strong commitment to high ethical standards and accountability.
Interested candidates can email: thecaringcenterED@gmail.com
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