Child Care Director Job Description: Top Duties and Qualifications

A Child Care Director, or Daycare Director, is responsible for overseeing a daycare facility to ensure that children have a safe and fun environment to learn and socialize with others. Their duties include hiring qualified child care staff, setting budgets for toys and supplies and proactively communicating with parents to accommodate their child’s needs.

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Child Care Director Duties and Responsibilities

Core duties of a Child Care Director include the following:

  • Develop a curriculum and program: Child Care Directors work closely with the center’s teachers and staff, creating learning plans or programs to meet state and federal requirements and parent’s expectations. 
  • Oversee staff: Staff management is probably the most important task of a Child Care Director. They must interview, hire and train staff, making sure that all background and fingerprint checks have been conducted. 
  • Manage facilities: The Child Care Director must make sure that the facility is safe and well-stocked. That includes checking that safety equipment is available and working, removing hazards and ensuring the facility is always clean and orderly. 
  • Create a budget: The Child Care Director manages the facility’s finances, which includes creating and working within a budget.
  • Market the facility: There is much competition between daycare facilities, so the Child Care Director must have a marketing plan to promote awareness of the facility and its services. 
  • Meeting up with parents and teachers: A Child Care Director will meet with parents and teachers to keep parents up-to-date on their child’s development and progress, including discussing ways to address any learning or behavioral issues.

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What Does a Child Care Director Do?

Child Care Directors typically work for daycare centers, preschools or nurseries to provide leadership to their staff and maintain a clean facility. They train Child Care Workers and make sure that the facility and its employees comply with child care laws. Their job is to organize parent contact information and dietary restrictions or medical conditions for each child. They contact parents when a child becomes ill and collect payment from parents. They may also oversee the implementation of safety measures like installing security cameras and automatic-locking doors to promote a safe environment for the children.

Child Care Director Skills and Qualifications

A great Child Care Director will need to have the following key skills:

  • Business management: A Child Care Director runs all aspects of a childcare facility from setting up the security system to creating the budget. Besides being detail-orientated and organized, they need to keep up with federal and state daycare laws and requirements.
  • First aid: Child Care Directors must have a good knowledge of child safety requirements and be up-to-date on first aid protocol. 
  • Excellent communication skills: As the face of the childcare facility, the Child Care Director must be an excellent communicator, being able to confidently take prospective parents on a tour, write newsletters and run staff meetings. 
  • Good crisis management: A Child Care Director must have strong crisis management abilities, being able to remain cool and composed in a crisis.
  • Leadership skills: The Child Care Director’s job is to keep staff motivated and resolve conflicts, which takes good leadership skills.
  • Classroom experience: Since a Child Care Director is responsible for hiring teaching staff, they need to know how to handle a group of children, understand childhood development and have the know-how to establish classroom structure. 

Child Care Director Salary Expectations

A Child Care Director can expect to earn a salary of $37,797 a year. This salary estimate is based on 698 salaries anonymously submitted to Indeed by employees, users or collected from data over the last 36 months. 

Child Care Director Education and Training Requirements

A Child Care Director needs an associate’s or bachelor’s degree in education or early childcare. In addition, Child Care Directors need to have a CPR and first aid certification, with most states also requiring state licensure.  

Child Care Director Experience Requirements

Early childhood experience is required for most advertised positions. Most professionals start off as a lead teacher in a childcare facility, working up to becoming a Child Care Director after a number of years of experience. 

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Frequently asked questions about Child Care Directors


What should you look for on a Child Care Director resume?

When reviewing candidate resumes for a Child Care Director position, it is important to look at their previous work history and compare their qualifications to your specific needs. Their work history should highlight a variety of positions that demonstrate their knowledge of child care and best practices. For example, when a candidate has previous work experience as a Daycare Receptionist, Child Care Worker or Child Care Coordinator, they likely understand what goes into running a successful child care facility. 

A Child Care Director candidate should also have an associate degree in an area like education or business and certification in first aid and CPR. They may also need to have a child care license to work in your state.


What are the daily duties of a Child Care Director?

On a typical day, a Child Care Director arrives to their facility about an hour before it opens. They greet workers as they arrive and use their time to answer emails. Depending on the size of the facility, Child Care Directors may also help their team set up activity stations or set out morning snacks before the children start to arrive. They greet families and talk with parents to determine who will pick up their child and at what time. Throughout the day, Child Care Directors remain on site. They divide their time between helping Child Care Workers carry out activities and performing clerical work. 

At pickup, they follow safety guidelines to ensure that each child leaves with their parent or a designated adult. Before closing, they help their team clean up from the day and make notes on what supplies they need to order.


What qualities make a good Child Care Director?

A good Child Care Director is someone who loves working with children and has a dedication to helping them succeed. They have a natural tendency to lead, which allows them to oversee all facility operations and delegate tasks among their staff members. Child Care Directors should also have the ability to remain calm and patient, even during the most chaotic moments of the day. 


Who does a Child Care Director report to?

If a Child Care Director works for a chain of child care facilities, they most likely report to someone at the corporate level. If a Child Care Director owns their facility, they may report to a state or local child care board to ensure they adhere to laws and regulations.

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