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South Dakota State University
Posted: 03/07/2023
SDSU Kindergarten Instructor

The School of Education, Counseling, and Human Development at South Dakota State University (SDSU) is seeking qualified candidates for a full-time, benefit-eligible, 10-month position as the SDSU Kindergarten Instructor at the Fishback Center for Early Childhood Education. As a Kindergarten Instructor at SDSU, this individual will work collaboratively with the Fishback Center co-coordinators and other faculty to support the student-success mission of the program, department, college, and university. This dynamic individual will be expected to teach a Brookings School District affiliated Kindergarten class located on SDSU’s campus, mentor teacher candidates in their residency/student teaching placements and be an instructor in the Teacher Education program. The ideal candidate will have demonstrated success in early childhood settings (including but not exclusive to childcare, preschool, and elementary schools, K-3rd grade) and have experience in or be familiar with the Inquiry-based, Reggio-inspired philosophy. The start date is August 22, 2023. The position is supervised by the Director of the School of Education, Counseling, and Human Developmentwith input from the Hillcrest Elementary School Principal.

South Dakota State University promotes access to and opportunities for all to receive the benefit of and participate in education, research, and service and is especially interested in candidates that can contribute to this land-grant mission of access.


  • The SDSU Kindergarten Instructor, in collaboration with the Fishback Center co-coordinators, is primarily responsible for day-to-day operation of the kindergarten laboratory.
  • Teach, mentor, and coach undergraduates enrolled in the early childhood education teacher candidates in their residency/student teaching placements.
  • Engage in Teacher Research to improve teaching practices in the Fishback Center.
  • Participate as a member of the Fishback Center Research Committee.
  • Participate in curriculum development and revision for SDSU and the Brooking School District.
  • Participate in SDSU departmental recruiting and retention activities.
  • Contribute and collaborate with Early Childhood Education departmental faculty and staff and participate in meetings and activities assigned and non-assigned.
  • Foster a safe environment that respects the variety of people and ideas by modeling respect for all students and conveying confidence in every student’s ability to learn.
  • Contribute and promote collaboration in academic, school districts, and professional communities.

Classroom Teaching & Operation

  1. Set up and deliver appropriate curriculum in the SDSU Kindergarten classroom.
  2. Serve as coordinator of curricular activities with other disciplines on campus (i.e. music, PE, and art).
  3. Facilitate the daily operation of the SDSU Kindergarten.
  4. Report to SDSU Preschool Coordinator any ongoing maintenance issues (i.e. physical plant).
  5. Maintain a current inventory list for the SDSU Kindergarten.
  6. Complete and file safety/accident (i.e. Ouch Report, and Safety Checks) and health files for the SDSU Kindergarten.
  7. Completion and maintenance of children’s records for the SDSU Kindergarten, dual role.
  8. Order equipment and supplies using capital from Brookings School District, coordinate center wide needs with the Fishback Center Co-Coordinators.
  9. Supervise and evaluate assistant teacher in the Kindergarten Classroom.
  10. Maintain or supervise communication between cook and assistant teacher regarding lunches and milk orders.
  11. Coordinate with the Center Assistant to work with family members to supply snacks for the kindergarteners.
  12. Establish positive relationship with families while paying attention to being responsive to varying needs of families and encouraging parent involvement in the program.
  13. Supply information of the Kindergarten Program to the college website contact to periodically update the website.
  14. Serve as classroom supervisor for Practicum students.
  15. Participate in Fishback Center Teaching Team Meetings.
  16. Participate in Fishback Center Ongoing Professional Development Meetings.

Maintenance of Regulations

  1. Support and maintain NAEYC accreditation process for the Kindergarten Classroom – Classroom Portfolio and Observation criteria.
  2. Monitor nutritional value of snack menus to ensure reflection of the Kindergarten Program’s nutritional policies.
  3. Maintain compliance with Health & Fire Inspections.

SDSU/Brookings School District Liaison

  1. Participate in Brookings School District Staff meetings.
  2. Participate in Fishback Center Teaching Team meetings.
  3. Participate in School, College, and University meetings.
  4. Represent SDSU in the SDSU Kindergarten waiting list and enrollment process.
  5. Participate in the Brookings School District Kindergarten Roundup.
  6. Develop and implement programs for kindergarten families, current and future (i.e. Little Visitors’ Day for incoming children and families).

Leadership/Professional Development/Public Relations

  1. Maintain ongoing communication with Fishback Center Co-Coordinators.
  2. Maintain ongoing communication with the Brookings School District Kindergarten Team and home Elementary School Team.
  3. Provide assistance with public relations activities, such as tours, presentations, and media information concerning the Fishback Center for ECE.
  4. Engage in professional development activities related to the philosophy and mission of the laboratory.
  5. Represent the Fishback Center for Early Childhood Education through a variety of leadership and service activities.

Health & Safety Qualifications

  1. Kindergarten Teacher must have a current TB exam, and physical examination.
  2. Kindergarten Teacher must be CPR (infant and child) and First Aid (pediatric, including rescue breathing) certified and must keep both current.
  3. Kindergarten Teacher must have a signed copy of the Child Abuse and Neglect statement in file and be screened for Child Abuse and Neglect through the SD Dept. of Social Services office.

Physical Demands

The physical performance of the program coordinator’s duties is described below.  If the Kindergarten Instructor is unable to physically complete these functions, reasonable accommodations will be made.

  1. While completing the duties required of this position, the employee must be able to stand, walk, sit, and reach with hands and arms.
  2. The kindergarten instructor may be required to lift and carry at least 10 and up to 50 pounds.
  3. The kindergarten instructor may be required to sit on the floor and must be able to move from the floor to standing on his or her power with quick response time.


  • Master’s Degree in Early Childhood Education or closely related field by the position start date.
  • Minimum of three years of experience teaching in early childhood (birth-age 8) settings, including childcare, preschool, and elementary schools.
  • Demonstrated evidence of experience in or be familiar with the Inquiry-based, Reggio-inspired philosophy.
  • Demonstrated evidence of excellence in coaching or mentoring early childhood educators.
  • Demonstrated ability to work collaboratively with colleagues within and across disciplines.
  • Valid driver’s license, or ability to obtain one within 30 days of hire, and willingness to travel
  • Experience working with and enriching heterogenous populations of students.
  • Excellent verbal and interpersonal communication skills.
  • Excellent written communication skills.
  • Must be authorized to work in the United States. Sponsorship is not available for this position.


  • Experience teaching educator preparation courses in a college setting.
  • Experience with field placement experiences in an educator preparation program.
  • Demonstrated experience in curriculum planning and course development.

SALARY: Commensurate with qualifications.


South Dakota State University offers a wide range of benefits including medical, dental, and flexible benefits, retirement plans, compensation packages, paid holidays, and vacation leave.  Employees also have access to internal and state-sponsored training as well as reduced tuition for state-supported courses at all State of South Dakota academic institutions.


South Dakota State University is the state’s largest, most comprehensive university with more than 200 academic programs, an enrollment of approximately 12,000 students, and over $60 million annual research expenditures. Teacher Education and Educational Administration programs are located in the College of Education and Human Sciences. The College houses 15 majors and 22 minors and serves roughly 2,200 students each year.

Brookings is home to approximately 24,000 residents and is located 60 miles north of Sioux Falls and 200 miles west of Minneapolis. Brookings is listed as an ideal community for families, students, young professionals and retirees, and is rated among the safest and most vibrant cities in South Dakota.

SDSU is home to the Fishback Center for Early Childhood Education which serves children ages 15 months to -6 years and includes a Brookings School District kindergarten classroom. The Fishback Center is the primary placement for early childhood practicum students. The Brookings Public School District educates approximately 3,300 K-12 students and ranks among the state’s highest academic achieving school districts. The district includes three elementary schools, an intermediate school for fourth and fifth grade, one middle school, and a high school.

Learn more about Brookings by visiting https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IT8OnH5eIgQ&feature=youtu.be.

APPLICATION DEADLINE: Position is open until filled with full consideration given to applications received by March 24, 2023


SDSU accepts applications through an online employment site.  To apply, visit: https://yourfuture.sdbor.edu, search by the position title, view the job announcement, and click on “apply for this job.”  The system will guide you through the electronic application form.  The employment site will also require the attachment of a cover letter, which should specifically address how the candidate meets the qualifications as outlined in the advertisement, Curriculum Vitae, academic graduate transcripts, and reference page with the contact information for three professional references.  Please contact SDSU Human Resources at (605) 688-4128 or HR@sdstate.edu if you require assistance with this process.

Any offer of employment is conditioned upon the university’s verification of credentials and other information required by law and/or university policies, including but not limited to, successful completion of a criminal background check.  

South Dakota State University is a tobacco free environment. It is university policy to maintain a drug-free environment and to thereby establish, promote, and maintain a safe and healthy working and learning environment for employees and students.  This position is subject to South Dakota State University’s Drug and Alcohol Testing Policy 4:14.

For questions on the position, contact Kay Cutler at Kay.Cutler@sdstate.edu or 605-688-6797.

South Dakota State University promotes access to and opportunities for all to receive the benefit of and participate in education, research, and service and is especially interested in candidates that can contribute to this land-grant access mission. SDSU is an affirmative action, equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration without regard to, and SDSU prohibits discrimination on, the basis of sex, race, color, creed, national origin, ancestry, citizenship, gender, gender identification, transgender, sexual orientation, religion, age, disability, genetic information, veteran status, or any other status that may become protected under law against discrimination in the offering of all educational programs and employment opportunities. Arrangements for accommodations required by disabilities can be made by emailing HR@sdstate.edu. Individuals with concerns regarding discrimination should contact: Equal Opportunity Officer/Title IX Coordinator, Human Resources, Morrill Hall 100, SDSU, Brookings, SD 57007, 605-688-4128.