Career Story: Director Of Education For A Family Public Service Agency

Director Of Education For A Family Public Service Agency

Job Title: Director Of Education

Type of Company: I work in a multi-service agency that provides shelter, education and training and prevention services for women and children.

Education: Northern Kentucky University, Bachelors of Science •• Simmons College, Masters of Social Work

Previous Experience: I worked as a state eligibility worker after college to determine cash and health benefits to people in need which led to my interest in human services.

I moved into a position with a non-profit organization that served at-risk teens. I went back to school and now work in a multi-service agency that serves homeless women, teens and children. I support the education and literacy needs for all these groups of client.

Job Tasks: As the Director of Education, my primary responsibilities are to oversee two programs. One program provides adult basic education services to student who dropped out of high school. The second program trains women to enter into entry level jobs, because they have had limited work experience. Another function of my job is to provided education resources to parents and children who live in our shelter programs.

Overseeing programs includes duties such as: hiring/firing and supervising staff. facilitating staff meetings, meeting with clients to discuss concerns and issues.

A general day includes communicating with staff and students to make sure the day and classes will run as planned. I check phone messages and emails and respond as needed. If a teacher calls out sick, I may need to teach or make sure other staff can cover the class.

I supervise 1 to 2 staff each day. Supervision includes meeting with staff listening to updates on current projects, make adjustments as needed, consider new projects and timelines and discuss performance concerns.

Students come to me to discuss their personal issues or school related topics. These meetings are usually unscheduled and happen as needs arise. I am usually interrupted from some task 3 to 4 times a day by students or staff as needed. I walk around the program several times a day checking in with staff and making sure people see my face. The students often refer to me as the "principal".

I attend several meetings a week some of which I lead like staff meetings and other which give me information like coalition meetings. For a staff meeting I prepare an agenda, and make sure we have updated data on students. In coalition meetings, I listen and take notes to share with staff and peers about various topics.

Another aspect of my job is to share why reading is so important to building children's vocabulary and prepare them to excel in school. Some of my job related activities is to order children's books. I ask staff to survey children and let me know titles they would like to read. I direct staff to sort, display and distribute books to children. I also help staff understand why this is important and how they can use books as incentives and in activities.

Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The best part of the job is that I get to do a variety of things. I work with people and get to interact with people from various fields like, education, social work, medical staff, public officials etc. I feel like I make a difference in peoples lives.

The worst part of the job is that I feel a lot of responsibility. I am also sometimes so busy that I cannot put all the time into people or paperwork so I miss things. It is difficult to direct people through challenging times in their lives like, failing a big test or losing out on a apartment for their family.

Job Tips:
1. Learn to communicate well verbally and in writing. Take courses on communication and read books to help you communicate well.

2. Learn to ask for help and to get feedback on areas for growth. In a position like this it is important to be able to hear where you are strong and where you need development in your skills.

3. Start small, take on jobs that have you work with people in small numbers with specific task, expand in the next job by working either with more people or varied task then as you build your skills add it all together to work with more people and varied task

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