Grade Level Chair- Lead Pre-K Teacher 2021-202

The Primary School - East Palo Alto, California - Full time


The Primary School is creating a new school model that brings together all of the adults in a child’s life, including parents, educators, and medical and mental health providers, starting from a very early age. We recognize the entrenched racism that exists within our public systems and the unjust impact this has had on families of color. Our aim is that children and families most impacted by systemic poverty and racism receive the multidisciplinary support they deserve to be well, learn, and thrive.

Long-term, we hope to create a game-changing school model that can be replicated across the country. As we continue to learn and grow, we plan to share what we’ve learned and pursue policy and systems change on a local, state, and national level. We are proud to receive funding from the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, a major national philanthropy.

Our approach has three defining characteristics:

  • We start early. We start working with children as young as 8 months and provide full-time school starting at age three to reach them at a critical stage in development.
  • We partner with parents. We believe that when parents thrive, children thrive, so we support the wellness and growth of parents alongside the growth of their children.
  • We integrate services. Our unique model unites health care and education, building a multi-disciplinary team and holistic system of care around a child’s full needs.

In 2016, we opened our flagship school in East Palo Alto, California, with our first class of four year olds. We have grown to serve over 300 children and their families through a birth to three program, parent wellness program, full-day preschool, and elementary school, which will grow through eighth grade. In 2020, we began programming at our second site in Hayward, California.


We are continuing to grow our East Palo Alto site and are excited to launch 4th grade for our 2021-2022 school year. In our school we currently serve ~250 students across two preschool grades (3 and 4 year olds), kindergarten, first grade, second grade and third grade. Beyond school, core components of our model include partnering closely with parents throughout their child’s development and supporting parent wellness; coordinating early screening and developmental support; and working with existing health care providers in the community to coordinate care for children.


The Grade Level Chair (GLC) - Lead PreK Teacher reports to the Principal and serves as the academic liaison between the leadership team and their respective grade level. In addition to the responsibilities required of a Lead Teacher, the GLC supports the Instructional Coach and Principal in guiding the grade level to reach the academic + social emotional end-of-year goals using data to drive instruction and decision-making. The GLC helps to steward student growth through the facilitation of grade level and data team meetings, co-observations, and informal coaching to their associate teachers (where applicable) and team. The GLC pushes the grade level team to build transformative classrooms for all students and models a clear level of fluency in activating the various members of our integrated model.

Similar to how every teacher is a safekeeper of a classroom, the GLC acts as a safekeeper for their grade level. They keep a close eye on the dynamics of the grade level team and work to ensure a collaborative and supportive team spirit. The GLC works to help refine the structures, planning and culture of the grade level while looking and planning ahead to keep the team on track. The GLC will also participate in Admin Team meetings on a monthly basis so that they can be kept in the loop of what’s happening. The GLC is a model of professionalism (exemplifying our norms and competencies), assertiveness, and composure while supporting their grade level with an air of humility and urgency. Due to the additional time and planning that will be needed to execute this role successfully a stipend will be provided. While you will be the main person of contact for the children on your Children’s Circle caseload, at The Primary School we are each responsible for every child’s well being and to foster relationships with their families.


  • Annual, weekly, and daily instructional planning tailored to the needs of each child
  • Instructional delivery in large group, small group, and individualized formats
  • Regular assessment and analysis of quantitative and qualitative student data with the goal of tailoring responsive instruction and support
  • Ongoing support and coaching of the Associate Teacher and Assistant Teacher that make up your Classroom Team
  • Collaboration with other teachers to practice skills and jointly problem solve
  • Partner with special education teachers, behavioral support staff and related service providers to provide direct and indirect instructions for students with special needs
  • Regular meetings with and outreach to families, including daily documentation and notes
  • Proactive collaboration and frequent engagement with The Primary School Parent Coaches and staff, and external health practitioners and partners
  • Participation in reflection and coaching, both 1:1 with Assistant Principal and in group context with colleagues
  • Active participation in the ongoing design and implementation of the TPS model through research, curriculum development, engagement with school and organizational leadership, and focused professional development
  • Coordinate family engagement activities to encourage family participation in school related events

The critical features of this role are described above but are not all encompassing; as our school grows and evolves your responsibilities may shift accordingly.


  • You have a Bachelor's degree
  • You have a minimum of 3 years of experience as a classroom teacher and hold deep and diverse instructional competence. (50 days of 3+ hours per day within 2 years)
  • You have a minimum of 12 units of ECE
  • Your work demonstrates a practice of creating transformative classroom culture for all kids. You are committed to social justice and take proactive steps to build an equitable classroom practice
  • You enthusiastically utilize data to understand what a student needs and to personalize instruction accordingly
  • You get that starting a new school and organization is no easy task and are not scared - in fact, you’re energized - by the idea of putting in the long hours and deep commitment needed to bring The Primary School to life
  • You have a parent- and family-centered mindset.
  • You recognize the multidimensional needs of children and families, because in your own way, you’ve been trying to weave education, health, and family support services together for your students
  • You are unafraid of diversity and engage confidently across differences
  • You are kind, humble, and collaborative

The critical features of this role are described above but are not all encompassing; as our school grows and evolves your responsibilities may shift accordingly

A Plus If

  • You have an understanding of early childhood education and child development
  • You speak fluent Spanish
  • You have a Site Supervisor permit
  • You have ties to the East Palo Alto Community

Physical Demands

The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this position. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the functions. While performing the duties of this position, the employee is regularly required to talk, hear, and communicate with both adults and children. The employee frequently is required to use hands or fingers, handle or feel objects, tools, or controls. The employee is frequently required to stand, walk, sit, and reach with hands and arms. The employee must occasionally lift and/or move up to 50 pounds. Specific vision abilities required by this position include close vision, distance vision, and the ability to adjust focus. The noise level in the work environment is moderate to high.


Compensation is commensurate with qualifications and experience, plus excellent health benefits, 401k retirement plan, flexible spending account (FSA), dependent care FSA, and generous paid time off, including a competitive paid parental leave benefit.


TPS values diversity; people of all backgrounds are encouraged to apply. In particular, we deeply value staff who share the identities and lived experiences of the historically underrepresented students and families we serve. TPS is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate in its employment decisions.

Please complete the following application and submit your most recent resume. These short-answer questions are designed to replace a cover letter, so take your time with them and copy in your answers from a separate document. If you feel that the questions do not accurately capture what you have to offer The Primary School, you are also welcome to attach a cover letter. Applications are being reviewed on a rolling basis so we encourage you to submit yours soon. We look forward to reading your application!

Apply for this job

Apply for this job



Experience Level

Mid Level

The Primary School

The Primary School is creating a new school model that brings together all of the adults in a child’s life, including parents, educators, and medical and mental health providers, starting from a very early age.
Share this job
Get our email newsletterSign me up
Keep up to date with our email newsletterSign me up