Website Drake University Head Start

Title: Head Start Teacher Associate (9 Month) – Multiple Locations

Position Numbers: 999373, 998717

Unit/Department: Drake Head Start

FTE: Full-time (9-month)

Salary: $15.50 – $16.50 per hour

Department Summary:

The Mission of Head Start and Early Head Start is a noble one: “better preparing young children and their families for life experiences now and in the future.” Drake University Head Start and Early Head Start programs support the comprehensive development of children from birth to age 5, in classroom settings, home-based programs, & childcare partner locations.

Drake University offers generous tuition waiver and tuition exchange benefits. If you, your partner/spouse, or dependent children are interested in pursuing a degree, these are wonderful benefits.

Job Summary:

Drake University Head Start is seeking professional candidates to serve as Teacher Associates in the following locations:

• Southridge (999373)

• Norwalk (998717)

This position will assist the teacher and child in daily activities in the classroom. This individual will participate in the development, implementation, and evaluation of a developmentally appropriate practice. This position consists of light cooking, assisting the teacher, and working directly with the children. Some time spent completing required paperwork. Work with the teacher to develop activities for children based on their interests and individual needs. Encourage the children to develop a positive self-concept through supportive and cheerful interaction. Assist with instruction by following lesson plans while adapting plans to meet individual learning styles. Promote successful classroom performance for each student. Assist teacher with documentation and observations of the children.

These are 9 month, full-time, positions that typically work August through May each year.

All Drake Head Start employees must assure compliance with Federal Head Start Program Performance Standards, state and local regulations and rules, confidentiality of all documents maintained in the department, and promote Head Start philosophy and initiatives.

Minimum Qualifications: 

• High School diploma

• Ability to obtain Preschool CDA (Child Development Associate) credential certification within two years of hire,

• Access to reliable transportation to get to and from your work site daily and ability to be insured by the University’s insurance carrier.

Preferred Qualifications:

• Head Start experience &  Current Iowa Driver’s License

Job Duties:

45% – Support Lead Teacher Instruction & Child development and behavior: Follow lesson plans while adapting plans to meet individual learning styles. Promote successful classroom performance for each student. Create a developmentally appropriate environment based on interests and individual needs of children where they are comfortable enough to verbalize feelings, question, explore, experiment, and problem solve. Share interesting ideas and activities with Lead Teacher to share with children. Encourage the child to develop a positive self-concept and support that self-concept with proper guidance and discipline techniques. Develop and maintain good communication while respecting confidentiality. Establish rapport and trust with parents, staff, volunteers, and visitors to respond to children’s environmental needs. Supervise children in non-classroom settings such as indoor large motor activities, playground, outings away from the classroom and arrival and dismissal with families, etc – (Essential)

35% – Health, Nutrition, and Safety: Prepare breakfast, lunch, snack, beverages, and any required recipes by following proper and safe food preparation methods. With training and assistance of the Head Start nurse, follow written health/emergency care plans, and give medications as directed. Give basic first aid to any child or staff in need. Ensure that all health and safety procedures are followed in all classroom and outdoor activities. Help children during their daily bathroom routine by offering direction and support when needed, including the changing of diapers and pull-ups. Participate in snack/meal activities by assisting staff with serving food, eating with children, and cleaning up after meals – (Essential)

10% – Documentation, Records, & Compliance: Assist staff with documentation and observation of children while ensuring confidentiality of all documents maintained in the department. Assist in creating and maintaining accurate confidential records within applicable regulations and performance standards. Prepare and maintain all necessary paperwork and records according to CACFP guidelines. Pick and review orders of all shopping lists provided. May order food and related items – (Essential)

5% – Professional Development and Role Expectations: Maintain an organized classroom, cleaning up after each activity and assisting staff with the special needs of the entire center. Continue professional growth by attending classes and workshops, reading new materials, and contributing resource ideas to the program. Travel for business purposes within Head Start service area. React to change productively, maintain prompt and regular attendance. (Essential)

5% – Federal Head Start Program Performance Standards, state and local regulations, rules, and requirements compliance. Maintain strict confidentiality of all records and documents. Maintain department records and reports in a secure manner.  Represent Drake University and Drake University Head Start in a professional manner.  Treat clients, co-workers, staff, parents and community members with respect and civility, and always ensure a safe and inclusive environment for everyone.  React to change productively, maintain prompt and regular attendance, and perform all other duties as assigned. Promote Head Start philosophy and initiatives – (Essential)

Special Instructions to Applicants:

Applicants will be asked to complete the online application and attach a resume/cv and cover letter.

Questions about the position, the application process, or working at Drake may be directed to Drake Human Resources at

All job offers are contingent upon satisfactory completion of a background check, satisfactory reference checks, and proof of work authorization.

A review of applications will begin immediately. This position will remain open until filled.

Salary & Benefits

The hourly wage will be $15.50 – $16.50 per hour. The final offered salary will be dependent upon the qualifications and experiences of the selected candidate.

At Drake, we are proud to offer our employees, their spouses, and eligible dependents a comprehensive benefits package, which includes a wide range of core benefits, perks, and discounts. If you are exploring a job with Drake University, we invite you to spend a little time with our digital benefits guide: Drake Benefits Guide (Plan Year 2024).

One of our very popular policies provides a tuition waiver for Drake employees, their spouses, and eligible dependents. Drake also participates in not one, but two tuition exchange programs available to dependent children. You can learn about both the tuition waiver policy and tuition exchange programs here: Tuition Benefits.

For faculty positions, selection will depend on the receipt of recommendation confirming the candidate’s scholarly achievements and teaching abilities and/or on the candidate’s satisfactory passing of a teaching demonstration if selected for an on-campus interview. For staff positions, selection will depend upon careful review of each applicant’s references, education, and, if applicable, experience.

About Drake:
Drake University is recognized as a top private university in the Midwest. Drake is a midsize university in Des Moines, Iowa, with an increasingly diverse student body. We are deeply committed to equity and inclusion and creating a sense of belonging for all members of the campus community—faculty, staff, and students alike. More than 900 faculty and staff are part of the Bulldog pack, a close-knit group of colleagues enthusiastic about preparing students to be global citizens and leaders, challenging assumptions. Drake University is not only an outstanding institution of higher learning, it is also a wonderful place to work. We are enthusiastically committed to welcoming new ideas and people into the fold, and to retaining and rewarding stellar employees.

All positions at Drake provide opportunities to contribute to Drake University’s core mission of creating an exceptional learning environment that prepares students of all backgrounds for meaningful lives and professional accomplishments.

Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion at Drake:
At Drake University, we don’t just accept differences—we celebrate them, we support them, and we thrive on them for the benefit of our students, our employees, and our community. Drake University is proud to support an equal opportunity, diverse, inclusive, and welcoming workplace. In fact, the celebration of diversity and inclusion are embedded in our Core Values. Learn more about our DEI commitment and efforts here.

We welcome applicants of diverse backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives. If you are a member of a socially or historically underrepresented or marginalized group or you have actively demonstrated a commitment to diversity and inclusion, we strongly encourage you to apply. If you are a member of one of the equity groups identified by applicable law, we encourage you to self-identify, where requested in our online application system.

Drake University is committed to providing access and reasonable accommodations in its services, programs, activities, education, and employment for individuals with disabilities. If you would benefit from an accommodation at any point in the recruitment process (including using our online application process), please contact Drake Human Resources (ph: 515.271.3133; e: and let us know how we can assist you.

At Drake University, we highly value a diverse, inclusive workforce. We are proud to be an equal opportunity employer. We stand firmly against discrimination including on the basis of race, color, national origin, creed, religion, age, disability, sex, pregnancy, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, genetic information, veteran status, or any characteristic protected by law.

To apply for this job email your details to