Employment Opportunities at Families Together

Cooperative Preschool Director- Interim Position 

Families Together Cooperative Nursery School (FTCNS, www.ftcns.org) is a DCFS-licensed, NAEYC accredited cooperative preschool that has operated for 20+ years in Chicago’s Edgewater neighborhood. The school provides a play-based educational environment where parents and caregivers are integral to the life of the school. At our core is a commitment to equity and anti-oppression practices, genuine collaboration between educators, families and children, and a creative and flexible approach to supporting each child’s cognitive, social and emotional growth. We offer part-day morning and afternoon preschool classes for 90 students, ages 2.5 to 6, along with a lunch program and summer camp. 

FTCNS is seeking a skilled educational leader to serve as Interim Director as we prepare to welcome a new permanent Director in 2022. The Interim Director would be eligible to apply for the permanent position if interested. This position is an excellent opportunity for an experienced educator and/or school leader who is committed to supporting and nurturing early childhood teachers and staff, skilled at working with parents as learning and leadership partners, and deeply understands and promotes the value of play, emergent curriculum, developmentally appropriate practice, and anti-bias education. 

The interim position could be full or part-time, depending on candidate availability. Start date is ideally summer 2021 and the Interim Director will have orientation and overlap period with our current (departing) Director. The FTCNS school year lasts from late-August to the beginning of June with a summer camp until the end of June. The ideal candidate will demonstrate the following key competencies: 


  • A deep respect for and understanding of the profoundly reflective, joyful, intellectually engaging and challenging work of early childhood teachers in a play-based program with an emergent curriculum model. 
  • An ability to observe and analyze classroom practice, supervise novice and veteran staff, and give feedback with insight, expertise, sensitivity, and a focus on growth. 
  • A skilled approach to supporting teachers in developing strong co-teaching relationships and navigating the inevitable challenges of these partnerships. 


  • A strong belief in the importance of honoring the power of play-based learning and children’s ideas and responding to children’s developmental needs through all facets of our school programs. 
  • A welcoming, highly-collaborative, and flexible approach to working with and supporting parent-volunteers in classrooms, committees, and the Board of Directors. 
  • A commitment to full inclusion of children and families with disabilities and an understanding and appreciation for human neurodiversity.


  • An organized and efficient approach to managing and delegating responsibilities.
  • A comfort with day-to-day and long-term financial management and developing, monitoring, and working within budgets. 
  • An enthusiastic embrace of technology as a tool for school administration and the skill and patience to troubleshoot technological challenges. 
  • A competent and detail-oriented approach to compliance with city, state, and national licensing and accreditation (NAEYC) standards. 


  • An unwavering focus on guiding the school and making short and long-term decisions that are authentically mission driven and inclusive of diverse perspectives. 
  • A nurturing, empathetic and patient approach to interpersonal exchange.
  • A commitment to self-reflection and strong analytical problem-solving skills.
  • An eagerness to apply innovative solutions to meet the needs of the school and all of its stakeholders. 
  • An ability to inspire, inform and communicate with specificity and sensitivity, both verbally and in writing. 
  • An understanding of how to apply equity-centered, anti-bias practices to all aspects of the life of the school. 
  • A devotion to continuously increasing their own cultural competence and inspiring others to do the same. 

FTCNS is an employer that is actively engaged in work to nurture and increase our diversity, promote equity, and combat oppression. People of color and LGBTQIA candidates are strongly encouraged to apply. FTCNS provides equal opportunity employment to all employees and job applicants regardless of race, culture, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, ancestry, age, disability, marital status, military discharge status, or any other classification protected by applicable local, state, or federal laws. 


This position offers a highly competitive salary, and the opportunity for health benefits.

Minimum requirements for the position include: 

  • A bachelor’s degree and at least 21 semester hours in early childhood education, child development, and/or early childhood special education and 3 semester hours (or equivalent training) in administration, leadership, or management. 
  • Demonstrated successful experience teaching young children. 
  • Demonstrated successful experience collaborating and working with parents. 
  • Proficiency in using Google applications (including Gmail, Drive and Docs, Photos, Calendar, Slides and Sheets), Survey Monkey, MailChimp, MS Word, PowerPoint and Excel. 
  • The ability to see clearly at close and far distance, stand and walk for long periods, lift up to 50 pounds, climb stairs in a building that is not fully accessible, and crouch, kneel, stoop or crawl with ease. (Modifications may be made to enable qualified individuals with permanent or temporary disabilities to perform the essential functions of this position.)
  • Willingness to: furnish written information regarding any criminal convictions; submit to fingerprinting and an Illinois Department of Child and Family Services (DCFS) background check; provide a recent state health examination form completed by a healthcare professional, including proof of required immunizations.

Preferred qualifications for the position include:

  • Demonstrated successful experience in school leadership and staff supervision.
  • State certification to teach preschool-aged children in a public school and/or to serve as school principal. 
  • Illinois Gateways Director Credential. 
  • Advanced coursework or a degree in educational leadership. 
  • A bachelors or Masters degree in: 
    • early childhood education, early childhood special education, elementary education, or child development; OR
    • any field with at least 36 higher education credits in early childhood education, child development, elementary education, and/or early childhood special education.

To be considered for this position, please send a current resume and a letter explaining why your experience, skills, schedule, and approach to early childhood education would make you a great fit for this position and our school. 

Please send resume and cover letter to hiring@ftcns.org. Questions/inquiries may also be emailed to hiring@ftcns.org. No phone calls please.


Families Together Cooperative Nursery School

1500 W. Elmdale Avenue

Chicago, IL 60660