St. Luke’s Experienced Staff
St. Luke employs 40+ caregivers and teachers for the children in our Child Development Center. Not everyone wants to spend their life taking care of young children, nor do we hire everyone who applies. We are looking for those individuals who feel called to care for children and who are committed to that calling, even though this job is stressful and exhausting. Traditionally the field of child care does not pay well or offer competitive bonuses. St. Luke is working to make our Center a place that values its employees and is continuing to increase wages and benefits.
We are blessed to have a staff who work so hard and for the number of staff who have been with us for so many years. We are pleased to have 8 staff who have been with us 3-4 years, 8 staff who have been with us 5-9 years, 3 staff who have been with us 10-14 years, 1 staff who has been with us 15-19 years, and 7 staff who have been with us 20+ years. Longevity is not something found often with child care professionals so we are thankful for all of these staff who share their years of experience working in our Center and caring for your little one(s).
Critical: Caring about quality early childhood education in Nebraska
Early childhood education is important in Nebraska! Infant through pre-K years are the most formative and important stage in a child’s life, so quality child care professionals are key. However, the child care profession is in decline because of staff leaving the field at the same time that demand for child care is growing.
St. Luke’s Child Development Center is one of many centers fighting to stay open and continuing to offer quality child care for children. We are seeking to improve the pay and benefits offered to these teachers and caregivers who fulfill such an important role, but it is not just about trying to compete with other employers. Our society also needs to acknowledge how important the work is that these teachers do, for each individual child as well as for our society as a whole.
There is currently a movement in Nebraska about the challenges facing this field. Please see the image below. We encourage you to be informed about this issue that impacts so many in Nebraska and to help us advocate for ways to create an environment where child care professionals are valued.
An important statement about staff and addressing staffing challenges
We are all aware that following Covid, many businesses have had trouble hiring individuals. At St. Luke, we also have struggled to get enough applicants for our Child Development Center. Although typically the field of Child Care attracts individuals who truly love children, it is hard for those individuals to work in a job they feel called to do (i.e. Child Care) when they can get paid more to work in fast food or similar environments.
The purpose of this letter is to share with you, the parents, how amazing our Child Care Teachers are. Our society has largely ignored the importance of child care and so at this juncture following Covid, St. Luke is stepping up as an advocate for this profession.
Child Care Teachers are one of the biggest influences in a young child’s life. During a child’s most formative years, from infancy till they start Kindergarten, Child Care Teachers spend more of a child’s waking time with him/her than almost any other adult in the child’s life.
Teachers who work in Child Care will tell you the things they love about taking care of children—having an impact on each child’s life, those joyous moments when a child takes a next step or learns a concept, the hug from a child, words of appreciation or support from a parent, and knowing that their job has meaning and makes a difference.
But even for Child Care Teachers who love working with children, the field of child care is challenging. Caring for children (not just one or two children, but a whole class of them) is physically, mentally and emotionally draining.
The life of a Child Care Teacher can include any/all of the following: Changing diapers or helping a child go potty, feeding and cleaning up after a meal, supervising children in the learning centers and free play, taking care of a child who is tired or not feeling well while still managing the classroom, cleaning and sanitizing, making and implementing lesson plans, updating learning centers in the classroom, helping new children learn the ropes in the classroom, helping children learn to interact with other children and adults, dealing with a child’s temper tantrum (which may or may not include a child verbally or physically lashing out at the teacher), communicating with parents, completing continuing education in the evenings or on weekends…all of these things, while still maintaining a loving and positive role modeling for their class of children. (And this list is just the beginning!)
We appreciate you as parents for choosing our Center. We hope this letter helps you better understand the value of everything that your child’s teacher does each day. We encourage you to express appreciation to your child’s teacher often!
One of the steps St. Luke is taking to place value on this profession is to increase our pay scale. On August 1 we began to increase the pay for our employees, both new hires and existing staff. Now and in the years to come, we hope to maintain a pay scale that will help us compete, especially for quality applicants.
If you have experience working with infants and/or children and are interested in working at St. Luke Child Development Center, you can email your resume to firstname.lastname@example.org, or you can come apply in person. Our Child Development Center entrance is on the north side of our building (off Davenport Street). We will receive walk-in applicants Monday through Friday between 9:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m.
We prefer applicants who are age 19 or older and who have at least 3 years of experience working with infants and/or children. We do a criminal background check and drug screen on all applicants.