A preschool director is responsible for all aspects of the daily activities, planning, and budgets of their center’s program to include the supervision and leadership of staff with the caring and teaching of children. They mainly work in child daycare services on a full-time basis. Some directors own the facilities and others are independently owned and operated.
Watch a video to learn what a preschool director does.
How to Become a Preschool or Childcare Director
Preschool and childcare directors typically require at least a bachelor’s degree in early childhood education along with experience. Programs teach students about child development, observation and documentation of children’s progress, and strategies for teaching young children. Some employers desire degreed candidates with some postsecondary coursework in early childhood education.
Preschool and childcare directors may also be required by some states or employers to hold a nationally recognized credential, such as the Child Development Associate (CDA). The CDA credential requires coursework, being observed working with children, and experience in the field. The credential is good for 3 years and requires renewal. Some states accept the Certified Childcare Professional (CCP) designation that is offered by the National Early Childhood Program Accreditation that carries it’s own requirements and is renewable every 2 years.
Job Description of a Preschool and Childcare Director
Preschool and childcare directors typically supervise and direct staff, prepare budgets, develop educational programs, and oversee daily activities of their center. They also train new staff and hire new staff members.
A director assists staff in solving conflicts between children and helps them communicate with parents and other staff. A director ensures their center’s facilities are maintained, clean, and meet the state regulations. Some preschool and daycare centers, like Head Start programs, receive state and federal funding and directors must ensure all state and federal guidelines are met. A preschool or childcare director should be skilled in business, communication, organizational, leadership, and have interpersonal skills.
Preschool Director Career Video Transcript
It takes a village to raise a child, as the saying goes. In childcare centers, education administrators are the “villagers” who oversee children’s daily activities, design programs for learning and fun, and supervise staff and budgets. This career is all about inspiring children’s love for learning.
While some administrators work directly with children, most focus on developing curriculum and activities and managing the preschool or daycare facility. Education administrators visit classrooms regularly. They ensure that equipment and spaces are clean and that children are engaged. Hiring, training, and supervising staff are other important parts of the job. Parent communication is also key; administrators meet with parents to discuss their children’s needs and progress, and to work together on solving any behavior or learning issues.
Administrators develop budgets and allocate program funds, review relevant state regulations, and establish policies to meet them. To ensure safety at their center, directors and assistants often share the responsibility of being available during all open hours. Many education administrators for preschool and childcare programs have a bachelor’s degree in early childhood education and related work experience. Some states require related certifications. Background checks are generally required.
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Preschool and Childcare Center Directors.
National Center for O*NET Development. 11-9031.00. O*NET OnLine.
The career video is in the public domain from the U. S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.