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2 Aug 2019

Operations / Administration Executive Director, Head Start DECE

NYC Department of Education

Job Description

New York City is committed to creating a strong continuum of early care and education from birth through five-years-old. To achieve this goal, the City is working to integrate all contracted early care and education for children from 6 weeks to 5-years-old into the Division of Early Childhood Education (DECE) by the summer of 2019, with the goal of creating a strong, seamless system of support and services for New York City’s youngest children and their families. As a part of this, the DOE has applied to be the City’s Head Start grantee and oversee a Head Start program that serves thousands of low-income children and their families.

Reporting to the Chief Policy and Planning Officer, the Executive Director, Head Start DECE will oversee the City’s Head Start grant and support Head Start programs in delivering high-quality early childhood services to children and families. The Executive Director will serve as a critical partner to the executive team and other staff in coordinating the implementation of a unified birth-to-five system of early care and education. In partnership with other DECE teams, the Executive Director will be charged with building systems and developing processes that ensure the successful implementation and oversight of Head Start programs. Performs related work.

Reports to: Chief Policy and Planning Officer

Direct Reports:  Deputy Executive Director, Head Start

Key Relationships: Chancellor’s Office, Deputy Chancellor of DECE, Senior Executive Director, Executive Director, Program Directors, teachers and principals, and various offices/divisions within the DOE, including external stakeholders.


Strategy, Planning, and Policy

  • Oversee the NYC Head Start program that serves thousands of low-income children and their families, coordinating across teams within the Division of Early Childhood Education (DECE) to create a quality experience for children, families, and program staff.
  • Manage relationships with Head Start delegate agencies to ensure that all program leaders are involved in grantee planning processes, aware of new policies and initiatives, and able to raise questions and provide feedback.
  • Supervise development and ensure timely submission of Head Start specific reports, including the annual Program Information Report, quarterly and monthly reports to the Board and Policy Council, the Community Needs Assessment, annual grant applications, and Training and Technical Assistance proposals.
  • Lead the annual Self-Assessment process, which includes analysis of delegate and grantee data, and involvement of the Policy Council and Governing Board to reflect on progress and areas of growth and development of recommendations based on these processes.
  • Serve as a resource for policy and research across the program team. Develop recommendations for key policies, personnel, and budget decisions.
  • Manage communication and capacity building structures, including resource development, that support Head Start policies, data reporting protocols, and accountability impacts. Ensure the delivery of consistent messaging regarding alignment between policies, programming, and accountability.

Team Governance, Leadership and Communications

  • Manage a team of staff that are dedicated to the support and oversight of Head Start programs.
  • Lead the DOE’s relationship with the federal Office of Head Start and Regional Office, including coordinating Regional Training and Technical assistance programming, liaising with the Regional Office Program Specialist responsible for DECE grant management, and coordination and preparation for federal monitoring reviews.
  • Provide leadership, direction, counsel, and support in a broad range of strategic, managerial, logistical, and administrative areas.
  • Support leadership capacity building efforts around resource optimization, strategic staffing, and effective operational practices that impact and accelerate program achievement.

Qualification Requirements:


  1. A baccalaureate degree from an accredited college with a major in education or social services and four years of full-time, satisfactory professional experience in one or more of the following fields: education, child psychology, program development, program evaluation, social or health care administration or a related field; at least eighteen months of which must have been in an administrative, managerial or executive capacity or supervising professional staff performing duties in one or more of the fields described immediately above; or
  2. Education and/or experience equivalent to “1” above. However, all candidates must have the eighteen months of supervisory, administrative, managerial or executive experience as described in “1” above. 


  • 10+ years of leadership experience, preferably with the NYC Department of Education or other educational institutions.
  • Ability to lead organizational change in large, dynamic institutions.
  • Expertise in knowledge sharing in general, and familiarity with an array of online platforms and tools that support knowledge sharing best practices.
  • Ability to engage team leaders throughout the DOE and the city’s schools around the value of knowledge sharing, resource sharing, and collaboration.
  • Knowledge of research methodologies that support user-centered design thinking and the use of formative data to inform product development.
  • Strong leadership, teamwork and influencing skills, with experience in program teams at all levels in a cross-functional, diverse, and evolving environment.
  • Ability to think strategically and enact a vision, and mobilize groups of people toward a common goal.
  • Ability to build strong working relationships with constituents and represent the Division of Early Childhood Education internally and externally.
  • Ability to work in a fast-paced environment, prioritize workstreams, and achieve results.
  • Excellent and effective communication skills, including the ability to write well and make clear, concise oral presentations and written reports.
  • Skill with group problem-solving and working with complex concepts in a dynamic setting.
  • A broad and deep knowledge base of the issues in K-12 education; experience working in the early education field.
  • Internal candidates preferred.

How to Apply

Please submit your application to the following link:

Bureaus: -Other-. Job Categories: Full-Time. Job Types: Operations / Administration.

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