We take pride in providing an exceptional learning environment for your child. Prospective parents sometimes ask what qualifications we seek in a teacher. We go to great lengths to hire teachers that meet and exceed all state and local requirements. In addition to performing background and reference checks, we have a multi-step selection process to ensure we are selecting the best additions to our team. Not only do our lead teachers exceed the teaching qualifications as outlined by licensing but our assistants do as well with the vast majority of our staff obtaining a Step 7 or higher on the Oregon Registry Steps. But our teacher search goes beyond that, because the qualifications for a truly great teacher are more than an itemized list of skills. The have chosen this vocation not to be loved by their students, but to appreciate and understand who they are and the mystery and wonder that they bring each day. A Small Wonders teacher works on the child’s level, looks them in the eyes, laughs at their jokes, smiles when they succeed, and helps them get up and try again.
We want to celebrate our teachers! Our holidays and closures such as our extended winter break are paid holidays and closures giving them time to travel and visit with families and friends and maybe catch up on their Netflix queue. Additionally to the kind words and thoughtful holiday gestures from families our teachers also receive ongoing training to meet their state required hours and a monthly health stipend to be applied to their deductible or alternative care or items of their choosing. Between our starting wages and our lead teacher salaries our average pay falls $5/hr more than the state average for early childhood education. We grant opportunities for growth, regardless of their educational standing, though we are proud to have so many experienced and educated degree holding young persons. The majority of our teachers begin as aides, new to the field but eager to obtain experience and we offer training opportunities that have brought many to undergrad and graduate opportunities such as social work, speech and language pathology, marriage and family studies, education, and more. Those interested and willing to apply themselves have become leadS and administrators within our program--they are standouts in their energy and approach and bring a new level of creativity to our school community. We are selective in forming our teaching teams and strive to allow generous overlap in transitions and training as much as possible.