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Employment Opportunities

CONTRACTUAL POSITION POSTING, Early Childhood Workforce Training Coordinator

Posting date: April 5, 2021

Background and overview: A significant obstacle to child care access in Topeka and Shawnee County is the lack of qualified teaching staff. Multiple child care center directors in the community report struggling to hire staff, with some even limiting their current enrollment as classrooms are closed until qualified staff are identified and on board. Supporting the needs of existing programs is an effective retention strategy that impacts a family’s access to finding the child care they need. To address this broad-based need, community partners will establish an Early Childhood Workforce Training Center, providing classroom training for potential/prospective child care providers, staff, and substitutes interested in a career in child care. This Center will be housed at the new SENT Prep Academy, scheduled to open April 2021, with the inaugural class of the Workforce Training Center scheduled for September 2021.

Prospective providers and staff will choose a career track, with track 1 being a preparatory career training track. Upon completion of this track, participants will have all required KDHE training and background checks completed. They will have completed classroom observations and benefitted from feedback from the instructor about what they observed. Upon completion of this two-week-long 60-hour program, participants will be qualified to accept employment in a licensed child care center as an assistant teacher.

Participants who complete the two-week Track 1 classroom training have the option to choose to enter Track 2, an experiential classroom teaching track. This track offers participants the opportunity to participate in an internship experience, allowing them to gain real-life classroom experience in a high-quality early childhood classroom. This internship experience will be particularly helpful to individuals who may have limited exposure to working with children in groups, providing the opportunity to work alongside a skilled and experienced master teacher. When possible, students will begin this experiential teaching track in one of the SENT Prep Academy classrooms, where they will receive ongoing feedback and support from the project coordinator as well as the assigned classroom coach. Additional sites within the community will also be utilized to expose students to multiple early childhood programs and philosophies. This experiential classroom teaching track will be set up as a four, six, eight, ten, or twelve-week experience based on the candidate’s prior work experience in a licensed early childhood setting and career goals. For program participants desiring a lead-teaching position, their professional learning plan will map out the additional coursework and experience needed to complete the CDA (Child Development Associate) credential and therefore meet the qualifications of a lead teacher in a licensed child care facility. The coordinator will also assist them in completing a scholarship application to help pay the credentialing fee.  

Coordinator: This contractual position will begin June 1, 2021. The contract period will end on April 29, 2022. A second full-year (April 30, 2022- April 29, 2023) extension of the contract may be available. The coordinator will provide an invoice and program report to Child Care Aware® of Eastern Kansas on the 25th of each month. The maximum amount of the contract is $25,000, estimated on 750 hours of time dedicated to the project.

Coordinator Role and Responsibilities:

  • Work with staff and an advisory team of area child care center directors to finalize the training and coaching model that will be implemented.
    • The training classes will be offered in a two-week cycle. (Monday through Friday, 9-12 and 1-4), 30 hours per week. Three series (cohorts) will be offered during the project period: September 2021, January 2022, and March/April 2022. The Coordinator will be on-site from 8-4:30 during those six weeks.
  • Work with CCAEKS marketing and communications coordinator to develop a strategy for recruitment of students, utilizing all media platforms and networking opportunities. Twelve students will be recruited for each cohort to meet the goal of 30 students completing the course during the project period.
  • Coordinate all aspects of the program including the delivery of approved training, overseeing the internship/apprenticeship students, submitting background checks for all participants, conducting classroom observations, and providing ongoing support.
    • Classes will be taught by a variety of instructors including CCAEKS staff and the program coordinator. Segments of the training that are not approved for KDHE licensing hours will be facilitated by area child care center directors, including an overview of the responsibilities of a child care provider (“A day in the life”), conducting mock interviews, discussing what it means to be part of the early childhood field and how to make the most of available supports, strategies for building relationships with coworkers and functioning as part of an effective team, etc.
  • Work with each student to prepare a professional learning plan that maps out their short-term and longer-term goals. These plans will help guide students as they are linked with the appropriate follow-up resources, scholarships, and support. The coordinator will stay in contact with students for 12 months following their completion of the program, tracking their employment and attainment of career goals.
    • Some may want to pursue a CDA. We will link them with KCCTO for training and scholarship information.
    • Some may want to pursue an AA. We will link students with area two- and four-year institutes of higher education for enrollment.
    • Some may be interested in enrolling in Washburn Tech Early Childhood Program and will be referred to this year-long half-day program. These students may also transition to Washburn University for an associate’s degree program at a substantially reduced tuition rate.
    • Some may be interested in opening family child care programs. These students will be assisted by the CCAEKS team and enrolled in the Successful Start program, offering ongoing coaching support during their start-up and first year in business.
  • Establish guidelines for the selection of classrooms for student placement in community-based licensed child care settings. Oversee and coordinate student progress through on-site observations of all students.
  • Participate in state-level conversations and workgroups addressing early childhood workforce development, as directed.
  • Participate in regularly scheduled meetings of the established leadership team of local child care center directors to monitor trends and needs in the community, making recommendations for modification of the program plan based on feedback from directors and students.
  • Maintain weekly communication with the project manager, Reva Wywadis, keeping her apprised of activities, successes, and challenges.
  • Track all program outcomes, submitting monthly written program reports with financial invoices.

Coordinator Qualifications:

  • Bachelor’s degree in early childhood, business, or related field.
  • Kansas Program Director approval.
  • Five years of experience working with children in a licensed/license-exempt child care setting.
  • Three years of experience as a child care center director (preferred).
  • Extensive knowledge of the early childhood system including child care licensing regulations.
  • Effective communication skills, both written and verbal.
  • Demonstrated ability to work well independently.
  • Strong organizational and administrative skills.

Questions regarding the Early Childhood Workforce Center or the Coordinator opportunity should be directed to Reva Wywadis, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Phone 785-440-4507.

To apply: Submit resume, cover letter, and three professional references to:

                        Reva Wywadis, Executive Director

                        Child Care Aware® of Eastern Kansas

                        1100 SW Wanamaker Road, Suite 201

                        Topeka, KS 66604

The review process will begin on April 26, 2021.

Click here to view or download a high-resolution PDF of the job posting.

Early Care & Education Specialist: Topeka Office

ERC/ RESOURCE & REFERRAL, doing business as Child Care Aware® of Eastern Kansas

Posting date: March 9, 2021

Anticipated start date for this position: June 1, 2021

About the position…

This is a great opportunity for someone interested in continuing a career in early childhood education but is ready to move beyond working in a classroom.

The Early Care & Education Specialist supports best practices in early childhood programs by teaching, coaching, and providing advanced knowledge to child care providers, educators, parents, and caregivers in areas of child development issues and developmentally appropriate practices which promote optimal learning experiences for young children.  This position has particular focus on supporting at-risk children in the areas of early literacy development to assure that children arrive at school with the skills needed for success.  This is a full-time (40 hours per week) professional (exempt) position under the daily supervision of a Provider Services Manager, and accountable to the Executive Director. Although the majority of work hours will be between 8-5 Monday through Friday, this position will require occasional evening and weekend (Saturday) hours offering professional development for child care programs.

This position is in the Topeka office, serving primarily child care programs in Shawnee County.  An associate’s degree in early childhood education or a closely related field, is required (bachelor’s preferred). 

ESSENTIAL FUNCTIONS of the position:

  • Provide technical assistance and coaching to child care providers, educators, parents and other caregivers, around child development issues and developmentally appropriate practices that promotes optimal learning experiences for young children ages birth to 5.
  • Create and offer in-service and pre-service professional development opportunities, approved by Child Care Aware ® of Kansas or KDHE, for child care providers and teachers.
  • Support the Resource Lending Library.
  • Follow all project-specific procedures and guidelines.
  • Maintain accurate records and generate reports of all activities, including assisting with program evaluation.
  • Represent the agency in a positive and professional manner.
  • Work effectively with all members of the provider services team and the overall agency, maintaining a commitment to high-quality customer service.

The ideal candidate for this position will:

  • Have excellent communication skills, both written and verbal.
  • Have demonstrated computer skills.
  • Have effective time management skills and the ability to effectively balance multiple projects.
  • Have a positive attitude and be willing to work as a member of our team.
  • Enjoy working with people, by phone and in person.
  • Have a positive work history, including a good attendance record.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of the different types of child care programs (i.e. child care centers, family child care, school-age programs, part-day preschools, Head Start, etc.), and possess a basic understanding of the early childhood workforce
  • Have experience in a regulated child care facility serving children birth to age-5, working with children in a group.

Salary & benefits:

The typical full-time starting salary range for this position is $32,000-$38,000 per year based on education and experience. ERC offers a generous benefits package which includes paid time off, paid holidays, cafeteria benefit plan, retirement plan, life insurance and group health insurance for all employees working 30 hours per week or more.  

About the agency…

ERC Resource & Referral is a not-for-profit agency serving 33 counties in eastern Kansas.  We provide meaningful, effective, high-quality programs and services to those who interface with our agency.  We work with child care providers and teachers by offering professional development, coaching, and access to resources that help them improve the quality of care offered.  We also serve as the Kansas Parent Resource Center, helping families locate and choose child care that meets their family’s needs.  We value teamwork, and strive to hire highly qualified people who share our passion for the agency’s mission!

Mission statement: 

ERC Resource & Referral, doing business as Child Care Aware® of Eastern Kansas, supports the healthy development of young children by improving access to high-quality child care options and educational resources for families and early childhood professionals.   

Qualified, interested candidates are encouraged to submit a resume and cover letter to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Click here to view or download a high-resolution PDF of the job posting.

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