How Jackrabbit Can Help Your Preschool Increase Productivity
Your preschool is great at caring for the needs of the children and families you serve! But as you well know, the amount of administrative tasks that accompany the business end of things can easily become overwhelming. The good news is that these management tasks can easily be automated – if you have a quality management software program in place. Especially if your organization is enjoying or anticipating growth, this is the perfect time to start simplifying administrative tasks through Jackrabbit Class Management Software.
Jackrabbit’s co-founder Mark Mahoney actually started the company to help business owners like you increase their efficiency instead of struggling the same way he once did, when he was in your shoes. While there are many ways in which Jackrabbit’s web-based class management tools can help your preschool, we’ll focus on a few customer favorites.
Overview of Benefits
Whether you’re hoping to encourage growth in the next year or accommodate the increased administrative needs that come with recent growth, Jackrabbit can be an extremely valuable asset on that journey. Some key functions our customers appreciate include the following:
• Streamlined registration and payment for preschool
• Unlimited access to updating schedules from any mobile device
• Professional and simplified method of sending important alerts via e-mail or text to parents and staff
• Easy communication between parents and staff regarding any special needs or concerns
• Great selection of easy-to-manage financial reports
• Simplified revenue tracking and planning potential
Financial Reporting Features
We get it. You’re not in it for the money. And yet, you need to stay afloat financially in order to fulfill your passion for providing a quality preschool. Here at Jackrabbit, we understand. With our web-based tools in place, assessing your financial position and increasing your bottom line has never been easier. Instead of hard copy spreadsheets to track staff hours, revenue, payroll, and attendance, all of that data and more can be easily accessed and communicated as needed. Not only will you be able to better plan for the future, but you’ll also avoid costly payroll mistakes due to real-time updates.
Enhanced Billing Potential
Especially for those in care-giving professions, the last thing we want to do is ask for money. If you have more than one staff member who performs administrative functions, we’re guessing they don’t typically fight over who gets to communicate with parents about overdue fees. With Jackrabbit, no one has to be the “bad guy” (or girl). Instead of individual phone calls, Jackrabbit will allow for online registration and state-of-the-art payment processing. Any overdue payments will automatically trigger e-mails, and late fees will be automatically assessed according to your preferences. In addition to greater morale among your staff, you’ll have less out-of-pocket expenses due to reduced administrative hours.
If you’re starting to see how these features could benefit your preschool, call today to talk with a Jackrabbit Product Coach and sign up for your no-obligation, 30-day free trial.
Child Care Center Leadership: A Director’s Multi-Faceted Role, Part 1
Do you realize how important the role of director is for your Child Care Center? It may be the most critical component of your entire program. More than facilities, more than the teachers, and certainly more than the details of your program. When it comes to the impact on children’s developmental progress, the director determines every aspect of what influences that progress. From hiring and scheduling your staff to providing opportunities for professional development and evaluating performance, the director is the one who sets the trajectory for achieving excellence.
An Environment that Fosters Excellence
A child care center director’s main goal should be to create and sustain an environment that’s conducive to learning; after all, a good teacher is always a lifelong learner. A significant part of achieving that lofty goal is directly connected to the way staff members are managed. It all goes back to the director and the kind of atmosphere he or she establishes. Is each day at your child care center an opportunity for growth and support? Are all staff members moving toward a shared vision and promoting the kind of educational excellence that inspires growth and translates into developmental growth of the children in your care?
Sustainable Strategies for Growth
As a child care director attempts to create an environment that continuously values learning and professional growth, there are several ways that directors of highly successful child care programs achieve such an atmosphere.
- First, new teachers are given orientation and assigned mentors to help them acclimate and grow.
- Second, learning plans make professional growth the natural part of the job rather than something extra that instructors must pursue outside of work hours.
- Third, learning teams help colleagues support one another in their professional growth.
- Fourth, feedback formats allow for regular re-evaluation that naturally leads to the kind of growth that promotes true excellence.
Clearly Understood Responsibilities
As important as the role of director is at your child care center, sometimes the nuts and bolts of what a director is expected to be and do can be forgotten. If you’re looking to hire a new director for your child care center, you should know that the expectations can greatly vary. Ranging from high school graduates to college-educated professionals, child care center directors in many states must be licensed. Some centers require a Director to hold a CDA or Child Development Associate certification, and typically previous experience with early childhood education is required. While the position is similar to that of a school administrator, the needs of young children are unique and require targeted expertise.
In Part 2 (below), we’ll take a look at the specific duties that child care center directors are typically expected to perform.
Child Care Center Leadership: A Director’s Multi-Faceted Role, Part 2
If we had to choose a single facet of your child care center that’s responsible for its success or failure, it would have to be the director. More influential than any other person, the director either directly or indirectly affects each aspect of your child care center. In Part 1 (above), we looked at some important facets of a director’s influence. Now we’ll look at specific duties. As you consider your own take on directorship, there are likely some you tend to prioritize and others that you don’t give as much thought or attention. As you approach this list with a growth mindset, you’re sure to find ways you can improve, influencing your child care center in positive ways.
From teachers to administrative assistants, custodians and teacher aides, the director is responsible for overseeing staff members. That includes all kinds of tasks ranging from developing job descriptions, performing background checks, checking qualifications, hiring staff members, providing professional development opportunities, overseeing payroll, ensuring that qualifications are maintained, and more.
From creating budgets to overseeing accounts payable and receivable, any child care center requires plenty of financial oversight in order to succeed. Marketing campaigns can also fall under this category in what’s become a highly competitive environment. As the demand for early childhood education programs continues to rise, the importance of marketing and careful management will continue to grow as well. Again, Jackrabbit Care includes plenty of tools to help directors carefully manage every aspect of the program.
We’re guessing this isn’t the reason you were drawn to directorship, but it’s still an important aspect of managing a child care center. Whether you directly oversee the facilities or outsource this aspect of the job, you as director are ultimately responsible to make sure your child care center’s facilities comply with both general standards of safety as well as governmental regulations. From inspections to certifications, you need to be up on all the legal issues to make sure your child care center becomes and remains compliant. You’ll also have to make sure that any equipment and supplies are purchased and accounted for.
From meeting with parents of prospective students to communicating with parents about specific policies, changes, opportunities, and more, the director is the one that carries this responsibility as well. Even if an administrative assistant does the leg work of communications, the director is the one who determines the what and when and how of all of it.
While teachers may be given the leeway to decide on and develop various aspects of the curriculum, the director is responsible to make sure what’s chosen complies with governmental regulations as well as other parameters of the designation your child care center holds.
With a Parent Portal, Staff Portal, and accounting software integration, Jackrabbit Care childcare center management software can help you keep up with all the duties you have as director. Sign up for a live custom demo or a free trial today – Click here.