Early Childhood Education Director in Residence

City Garden Montessori School
December 30, 2020
Job Type
Part-Time to Full-Time Position - See description for more information
Education Requirements
Minimum, Bachelor's degree AND Montessori certified
Experience Requirements
Have at least seven years’ experience as a lead Primary Montessori guide, and have experience in public Montessori school settings
Work Hours
20 hours per month to start, leading to full time
Street Address
1618 Tower Grove Ave


City Garden Montessori School (City Garden) is a neighborhood Montessori charter school in St. Louis, Missouri, and we are committed to strong academic outcomes for all students. Our team possesses passion and determination to implement the Montessori approach to educating children in a diverse, public school environment. City Garden is committed to being an anti- biased, anti-racist community and seeks others who are passionate about these values. We are committed to continuous learning and growth for adults in the community, to foster excellence for all City Garden children.

Located in St. Louis, City Garden is in its 13th year as a charter school, having received a second 10 Year Charter with the state of Missouri in 2017. We began in 2008 with 53 students; now, we have 268 children in preschool through eighth grade.

In Fall, 2021, we are planning to expand our Montessori early Primary, or childhood education (ECE), program, adding 78 new spaces for 3- and 4-year-olds, and 60 new spaces for 5-year-olds. As we prepare to grow, we are seeking an individual to lead our ECE program who shares our vision for academic excellence for all children and holistic Montessori education, rooted in equity and social justice. The Early Childhood Education Director in Residence will report directly to the Principal.

City Garden has attracted support from the Opportunity Trust, and the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative recently released a case study about City Garden’s innovative model.

As City Garden embarks on this ambitious strategic plan, we’re seeking to hire an Early Childhood Education Director in Residence for our flagship campus.. From February 2021 to June 2021, this position will be part-time – approximately 20 hours per month. In July 2021, the person in this role will transition into the permanent Early Childhood Education Director and will become full-time.

The Early Childhood Education in Director in Residence (ECEDIR) will be instrumental in preparing for our Primary program to expand in the 2021-2022 school year. The ECEDIR will take the lead in identifying and planning for academic and instructional capacity building and developing strategies to retain and strengthen City Garden’s culture and sense of community among a growing Primary staff and set of families. The ECEDIR will oversee hiring of new Primary staff for Fall 2021, and will work closely with the Principal to codify curriculum, systems and structures to support the growth of the program. The ECEDIR will also provide critical input to the facilities and operational needs to support the growth of the Primary program. The ECEDIR will contribute to a positive, trustworthy, and respectful climate amongst the Primary staff that has consistent expectations for all. The ECEDIR will build relationships, communicate proactively, and promote continual growth while maintaining a student-centered focus.

The ideal Director of Early Childhood in Residence candidate will...

  • Have at least seven years’ experience as a lead Primary Montessori guide
  • Be Montessori certified and have experience in public Montessori school settings
  • Have a strong grounding in anti-bias education and antiracist values and principles, and is excited to reimagining education through these lenses
  • Have an ability to meet people where they are, build and nurture a strong team, collaborate across stakeholders, build community, and lead with both empathy and conviction
  • Be deeply committed to both whole-child education and academic rigor, having proven success and outcomes in meeting children’s needs holistically and achieving high academic outcomes for children of all backgrounds
  • Have a track record of success around closing racial achievement/ opportunity gaps
  • Be excited to engage deeply with students, teachers, staff and families as partners
  • Love to learn, have a sense of egoless-ness, be open to constant feedback, have an extreme growth mindset, and will always place children at the center of decisions and action

Compensation and Benefits

This position offers a stipend of $1,000 per month from February through June, 2021, for approximately 20 hours of work per month. In July 2021, the position will become a full-time, 12-month position, with a salary range of $63,000 - $70,000, depending on experience. The full-time position will include robust benefits including medical, dental, retirement, generous personal time off, as well as an admissions preference to City Garden Montessori School for Missouri residents. More details can be provided upon request.

To Apply
Please apply by submitting your resume and detailed cover letter, which highlights why you are interested in this position, your relevant experience, and how you meet the qualifications and qualities sought for the position, at jobs@citygardenschool.org.

At present, we are not able to offer employment to applicants who do not currently reside in the United States. 

City Garden Montessori School is an equal opportunity employer and an organization that values diversity, equity and inclusion. Recruiting staff to create an inclusive organization is a priority, and we encourage applicants from all cultures, races, ethnicities, religions, sexes, national or regional origins, ages, disability status, sexual orientations, gender identities, military or veteran status, or other statuses protected by law. All candidates are evaluated solely on their qualifications to perform the work required.


Candidates must meet the following requirements:

• Is deeply grounded in racial equity, have strong alignment with anti-bias, anti-racism values, and be able to lead from this place
• Holds a Montessori Early Childhood certification from the American Montessori Society (AMS) or Association Montessori Internationale (AMI) and has seven years or more of experience as a lead Primary guide
• Has experience working in Pre-k/K public education
• Has extensive understanding of Common Core State Standards
• Has significant experience in guiding instructional practices and curriculum development and alignment
• Has deep and comprehensive understanding of early childhood education and its political and policy landscape in Missouri


The Early Childhood Education Director of in Residence will:

• Establish and clearly articulate a shared vision for learning and instruction in City Garden Montessori School’s Early Childhood Program, grounded in the Montessori Theory of Development and City Garden’s Anti-Bias, Anti-Racism (ABAR) commitment.
• Build positive student, parent/guardian, staff and community engagement around this vision.
• Lead and influence hiring, curriculum planning, student and family support, professional developing, operational planning and facilities changes necessary to successfully grow City Garden’s Primary program in Fall, 2021
• Participate in leadership development and management training throughout the 2020-21 school year


In order to fulfill these responsibilities, the ideal Early Childhood in Residence candidate will also possess:

• Demonstrated success as a visionary early childhood educational leader with strong instructional insight, and demonstrable evidence of closing racial achievement gaps;
• A strategic mindset, with the ability to craft and align a team around a compelling vision for excellence;
• Effective management and leadership experience with a track record of effectively coaching, developing, and (evaluating) teachers and staff;
• Ability to manage organizational change effectively;
• Knowledge of pedagogical models and strategies to improve instructional delivery with an ability to design, deliver, and support high-quality professional learning for teachers and staff;
• Ability to understand and analyze data to draw out big themes;
• Versatility and dynamism, able to engage a variety of individuals in dialogue and speak and write in a clear, compelling, and authentic manner;
• Is child-centered, flexible, and willing to do whatever it takes for our students;
• Exhibits a growth mindset and is committed to proactive, self-directed continuous learning; and
• Embodies humility, vulnerability, and willingness to speak and hear candid feedback.

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