Full Time

Director, Early Childhood Education (DECE)

Hillcrest Progressive School 59 Plymbridge Road , Toronto ON

Hillcrest Progressive School is Ontario’s oldest Jewish preschool. With a pioneering spirit from the start, a group of parents worked to establish a school where children would receive a modern progressive education, while incorporating aspects of their Jewish heritage. In 1955, Hillcrest’s present location in Hogg’s Hollow was purchased – a gracious home set amidst two acres of wooded land, just a few kilometres north of downtown Toronto. Today, our heritage still shapes our approach to learning, while our progressive spirit continues to evolve with the times.

The DECE is the leader, primary administrator, and face of the institution. They are there to supervise staff, maintain positive relationships with families and oversee a progressive and cutting-edge curriculum that sets the school apart and continues to improve the reputation that Hillcrest was built upon.

Key Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Build and elevate a well-respected, long standing Early Childcare Center through careful management of staff, curriculum and enrollment
  • Foster relationships with families in the community
  • Ensure that the curriculum reflects the organization’s commitment to a progressive approach to Early Childhood Education
  • Lead and motivate a team of caring and compassionate educators to ensure a positive and nurturing environment for the members of the Hillcrest community
  • Ensure that the school’s mission and philosophy is being well represented through our educators and our presence in the community

Values: A nurturing and inclusive learning space where all are welcome and given the tools to flourish based on their individual needs, through the support of our educators and environment.

  • Embrace and support diversity and acceptance for children, families and staff.
  • Assimilate Jewish and universal values into programming.
  • With a passion and expertise in child development, coordinate teachers, parents and if necessary, other diagnostic professionals to respond to specific student issues and behaviours.
  • Facilitating a team of Educators to support the vision: build, train, and support a team of educators to deliver a superior educational experience.
  • Oversee the hiring and training of all staff, and provide regular supervision and annual evaluations.
  • Develop and execute a staff retention plan, including employee appreciation and recognition programs, as well as a professional development plan including PD days and outside opportunities.
  • Identify strategies for recruitment and leadership development to build a staffing channel and mentor future leaders.

Achieving Excellence

  • Knowledge and compliance with the Ministry of Education (Ontario) licensing guidelines to ensure standards are met and exceeded, including but not limited to, preparation for site visits, renewals, working with facilities, additional licensing of rooms, annual reports, emergency plans and training.
  • Manage up to date Ministry compliance expectations regarding Covid-19 policies and procedures.  Ensure all sanitation practices are in compliance with Ministry standards
  • Ensure the parent and faculty handbooks are current, relevant, and consistent with Licensing Requirements and Organization policy.
  • Creating and fostering community: Build a nurturing community of staff, parents and children, and develop relations with outside organizations to help create the stepping stones our families will use to navigate their journey through their child’s educational career.
  • Establish and cultivate positive open communication with children and families in order to ensure that each child’s individual needs are met and exceeded,
  • Develop initiatives using Jewish holidays as exciting opportunities to encourage involvement from multi generation families including siblings, parents and grandparents by fostering an inclusive environment and inspiring participation.

Financial Sustainability and Planning

  • Closely monitor budgets and prioritize the needs of the school based on the most immediate requirements.  Closely monitor enrollment and allocate budget accordingly.
  • Create opportunities and interest through school tours, timely response to parent inquiries and build an awareness within the community for new families
  • Create business plans for sustainability and growth.
  • Work closely with Marketing and Fundraising committees to create continuous sources of revenue that are in line with the school philosophy and mission.
  • Support a positive rapport with the Board of Directors and foster a healthy relationship between staff and board members
  • Build positive staff morale.
  • Provide excellent customer service.
  • Perform work after hours as needed to meet applicable deadlines, family events or scheduling needs.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Minimum Qualifications and Requirements:

  • Registered Early Childhood Educator
  • Meet or exceed the Ontario Ministry of Education requirements to be considered a Director
  • Minimum of 5 years of teaching experience
  • Minimum 2+ years of managerial experience in a leadership/supervisory role in an early childhood program or related field
  • Thorough understanding of the Ontario Child and Early Years Act, with the ability to write policies mandated by Toronto Public Health, Ministry of Education, and others as required
  • Ability to think outside the box in order to grow and develop ECE programs
  • Demonstrated effectiveness in program administration, planning, and coordination
  • Exceptional interpersonal skills and demonstrated ability to communicate and interact effectively with parents, children and staff
  • Strong managerial skills including the ability to foster camaraderie, cooperation, and teamwork
  • Excellent oral and written English communication skills
  • Proficient in the use of Microsoft Office and ability to master new software systems
  • Ability to manage multiple projects simultaneously
  • First Aid/CPR certified
  • Up-to-date vulnerable screening check and police clearance check.


  • Bachelor or Master Degree in a related field
  • Additional certifications relating to children including, but not limited to, Special Education, Child development and psychology
  • Knowledge of Jewish culture, traditions and practice or a strong willingness to learn

**Salary and Benefits:

  • Salary plus benefits, based on qualifications and experience.
  • Excellent medical/dental and vacation benefits.

Qualified applicants are invited to submit a resume and cover letter to: hillcrestschool.job@gmail.com