Associate Director

at Bright Horizons in Wilmington, Delaware, United States

Job Description

Primary Purpose

The Associate Director reports to the Regional Manager and to a mentoring Director designated by the Regional Manager. Under the guidance of the RM and mentoring director, the Associate Director will focus on learning all aspects of a director’s responsibilities in the areas of People, Partnerships, Program and Performance with a significant focus on Bright Horizons’ mission, culture, goals, values (HEART Principles), philosophies, and policies and with incorporating these into the daily operation of a center/school. The Associate Director will be provided with resources and training to develop functional capabilities and leadership skills needed to move into a director role at a Bright Horizons center.

Requires flexibility to assume short-term assignments at different centers which will require regular work schedule adjustments and travel to designated centers.

Essential Functions/Responsibilities

Under the guidance of the mentoring Director and Regional Manager, the Associate Director will:

+ Lead and support staff to interact and communicate respectfully with each other, children and families demonstrating an inclusive environment.

+ Participate in the recruiting process, including outreach to community and local colleges and schools, etc., and in all steps associated with hiring and onboarding new hires.

+ Participate in the growth and learning process for staff, including Job Performance Appraisals (JPA), coaching, development planning, succession planning and progressive counseling as needed.

+ Evaluate classroom curriculum and environment. Lead the effective implementation of Bright Horizons’ approach to curriculum and creating environments for children.

+ Utilize center communication systems, and attend center events, such as staff meetings and training days.

+ Follow the 10 Steps to Parent Partnerships, and model positive and professional interactions with families. Attend all family meetings and special events.

+ Attend client meetings, and review contracts and monthly joint reviews (MJR).

+ Participate in calls for setting up new centers, marketing, recruiting, construction, and licensing.

+ Keep Director informed of any family or staff issues.

+ Maintain family master file, accurately updating weekly statistics, conduct family tours, and promote family referral program.

+ Assist with all aspects of marketing and enrollment, including utilizing IMS and conducting center tours.

+ Implement NAEYC standards, if applicable and lead compliance with state licensing requirements.

+ Follow all state regulations pertaining to incidents of abuse and neglect, including mandated reporting requirements and training.

+ Participate in responsibilities associated with managing center finances, such as monitoring the budget, implementing the labor management system, and utilizing Bright Star to maintain accurate and current financial records.

+ Maintain confidentiality about issues concerning other staff members, children, and families, or Bright Horizons management and operations. Must not involve families in center/school concerns.

+ Provide a clean, safe child-ready center/school at all times.

+ Positively project the organization, mission, goals, philosophies, and policies to families, staff and the community.

+ Establish positive relationships with home team, vendors and clients.

+ Assume additional classroom and center/school responsibilities as needed, for example: kitchen, pets, children’s files, etc.

+ Ensure that daily responsibilities are completed; jobs are shared and taught to each team member over time.

+ Lead and supervise teaching team through communication, collaboration and discussion of individual children’s needs, services and curriculum planning.

+ Follow the work schedule of the mentoring Director to maximize learning opportunities.

+ Communicate weekly with the DVP and RM to share the tasks completed and responsibilities learned that week.

Decision Making Authority

+ Must comply with mandated reporting requirements. Suspected child abuse or neglect must be promptly reported to the appropriate State agency, or to the school director who then becomes responsible for filing the report immediately. The Associate Director has the obligation and the right to contact the appropriate state agency directly. If someone reports a concern regarding the care of children or a risk to the safety of children, staff or families to the Associate Director, the Associate Director must promptly report this to the mentoring director and/or regional manager and take steps to investigate as appropriate.

+ Supervisor approval needed for schedule changes, time off requests, seeking outside support services for children, deviating from location policy, scheduling a field trip, planning extracurricular or enrichment activities, authorizing expenditures on equipment or supplies, filing an expense report, arranging for school/center maintenance, conducting a JPA, sending out written communication to families or staff, contacting a client about non-routine matters, informing a family of an overdue payment, or terminating a staff member’s employment.

+ Supervisor approval also needed when responding to a staff or family concern, beginning progressive counseling with a staff member, meeting with a family about concerns regarding their child’s behavior or development, scheduling staff work-time changes or substitutes, implementing significant changes in the classroom/program/environment, attending meetings outside the location for the benefit of the location, altering staff schedules, or recording an unusual incident.

Job Requirements


Bachelor’s Degree preferred


3 years management experience, plus additional professional teaching experience required

Additional Job Requirements

+ Qualified to meet the state requirements for Director (preferred) or prepared to participate in an education plan to become qualified within 5 years. Exceptions must be approved by Divisional Vice President (DVP). Additional school/school requirements may apply.

+ Bachelor’s Degree preferred – if Associate Director has less than a Bachelor’s degree, an educational plan to obtain a degree within 5 years is required.

+ At a minimum, must have a CDA or 9 credit hours/120 clock hours/12 CEUs.

+ Requires 3 to 5 years of management experience plus additional professional teaching experience.

+ Demonstrated understanding of NAEYC accreditation and licensing standards; knowledge and ability to lead staff in implementation of developmentally appropriate curriculum; experience and skill in communication, leadership, organization and supervision; sensitivity and responsiveness to needs of parents/guardians, staff, and clients; and ability to perform job responsibilities in all levels of direct care.

+ Strong oral and written communication skills and organizational skills.

+ Responds well to unusual or crisis situations.

+ Capacity to understand and manage center/school financial duties.

+ Computer literacy required.

Physical Demands

+ Follow state, federal and Bright Horizons’ guidelines regarding immunizations, employment physical and required health and safety training and practices.

+ Maintain mental and physical alertness and an appropriate level of energy to perform essential job requirements. Respond immediately and appropriately to multiple or unexpected situations or emergencies.

+ Demonstrate full range of motion to lift, reach, squat, climb, sit, and otherwise fully participate in activities.

+ Frequently lift, move, or hold children with a range of weight from 10 to 40 pounds. Occasionally lift, move, or hold weight more than 40 pounds.


Contact us at or 855-877-6866

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Job Posting: JC202713430

Posted On: Jan 23, 2022

Updated On: Jan 26, 2022