Houseparent Job Description
The Houseparent job description includes the following essential functions:
Nurturing, Education, and Parenting Students
Facility and Office Management
More detailed information for each responsibility area is listed below.
DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES:
1.0 — Nurturing, Educating, and Parenting Students (60%)
1.1— Demonstrates ability to nurture each student entrusted to their care consistent with the "Collaborative Parenting Style" established in the MHS Parenting Model by:
- establishing trust,
- advocating for students' best interest,
- mentoring students,
- developing strong, mutually respectful relationships,
- providing consistent emotional support through praise, affection, empathy, and recognizing student achievement,
- advising students through personal problems,
- listening to students' thoughts, feelings, concerns, and problems,
- creating a family style environment by establishing student home family rituals and traditions,
- helping students in developing relationships,
- maintaining students' dignity and self-esteem,
- providing opportunities for students to develop personal maturity through developmentally appropriate freedoms and responsibilities,
- maintaining confidentiality of sensitive materials according to the MHS Confidentiality Policy,
- supporting students by attending as many functions that involve their students as practical, and
- supporting students through participation in the Intramural Program.
1.2 — Fosters relationships between students and their families of origin by:
- orienting students and their families to the student home upon enrollment and counseling regarding possible separation issues,
- providing opportunities for and promoting interaction with siblings,
- participating in parent conferences when necessary,
- communicating with the family of origin regarding student’s progress, accomplishments, growth areas, and concerns about the student,
- consulting with the family of origin, when appropriate, and involving them in decision- making concerning the student’s care.
1.3 — Protects the rights and dignity of individual students by:
- making decisions based on the best interest of students,
- supporting the ethical treatment of all students,
- serving as a direct link to students in cases of student's rights violations, and
- promoting problem solving and relationship development between students.
1.4 — Attends to students' health care needs by:
- recognizing students' health care needs and referring to medical services when appropriate,
- maintaining and securing prescription and non-prescription medications as well as other medical/first aid supplies,
- implementing prescribed/suggested medical treatments as practical within a group living situation,
- administering medical treatments as prescribed as practical within a group living situation,
- maintaining accurate student home health care records.
1.5 — Attends to students' mental health needs by:
- reporting signs of student abuse, depression, and suicide ideation to psychological services,
- maintaining students' dignity and self–esteem,
- recognizing and supporting students in bereavement and separation issues, and
- listening actively to students' thoughts, feelings, concerns, and problems, and counsels, when appropriate.
1.6 — Attends to the moral, spiritual, and character development of students by:
- is responsible to the spiritual needs of the student by making appropriate referrals,
- assisting students in learning about various faiths,
- teaching and modeling values related to sound moral and character development,
- leading daily devotions and prayer at meals consistent with the religious heritage of MHS and the Office of Religious Programs,
- teaching and role-modeling appropriate choices in movies, music, and television programs, and
- support students' attendance at the community church of their faith.
1.7 — Teaches social, self-help, life-long learning, and basic life skills by:
- implementing the designated divisional social and life skills program,
- teaching developmentally appropriate decision-making and critical thinking strategies,
- providing a supportive and flexible structure from which students learn responsibility, problem solving, and time management,
- providing opportunities for students to practice and demonstrate learned skills including manners, conflict resolution, budgeting, and cooperation and teamwork,
- teaching students to develop a positive peer culture through helping relationships,
- facilitating students' development of individual and student home goals and objectives,
- teaching students developmentally appropriate leadership and communication skills, and
- encouraging individuality and creative thinking from students.
1.8 — Facilitates student scholastic achievement by:
- providing a structured learning environment and assisting with homework when necessary,
- teaching and modeling appropriate study skills,
- assessing students' school grades and performance and implementing additional learning support when necessary,
- communicating with teachers on a regular basis, and
- counseling and preparing students for post-secondary education and/or careers.
1.9 — Manages and evaluates the students' individualized goal attainment through established methods as identified in each Division:
- stressing the importance of setting goals, evaluating progress, developing a strong work ethic, following through and remaining committed,
- collaborating with others to decide how best to help each child reach their best potential, and
- participating in overall assessment of students.
1.10 — Attends to students' personal safety by:
- being aware of student location,
- being aware of and attentive to warning signs of emotional distress,
- maintaining an accurate visiting roster,
- adhering to the established visiting policy, and
- supporting overall campus supervision.
1.11 — Facilitates student leisure and recreational activities by:
- teaching students to make leisure activity choices,
- planning for and leading students on educational and/or recreational trips and/or activities,
- facilitating student home activities,
- participating in divisional and/or school activities, and
- encouraging and supporting students' involvement in MHS community activities.
1.12 — Teaches students healthy lifestyles by:
- teaching, coaching, and modeling personal hygiene,
- planning, participating, and involving students in regular physical activity,
- teaching students to choose and prepare nutritious meals and snacks,
- educating and counseling students on dating relationships, human sexuality, and drug and alcohol issues, and
- making referrals to appropriate student support services when necessary.
1.13 — Teaches students to exhibit behaviors and values deemed appropriate for a member of the MHS community through:
- displaying appropriate modeling,
- maintaining personal self-control,
- respecting and appreciating diversity, and
- modeling positive marriage relationships.
1.14 — Establishes and maintains a developmentally appropriate behavior management system by:
- managing student behavior in the home, MHS community, and public,
- collaborating with students in developing student home rules and regulations,
- effectively utilizing Therapeutic Crisis Intervention skills to prevent and/or deescalate intense situations while maintaining the dignity and respect of the student,
- holding students accountable by delivering natural and logical consequences and using corrective teaching,
- implementing the school's uniform discipline policy, determining minor infractions and consequences, and consulting with Home Life staff regarding serious offenses,
- utilizing modules from level 1 houseparent certification such as active listening, pro-active teaching, corrective teaching, and self-awareness,
- utilizing a consistent incentive system that reinforces and rewards student appropriate behavior, and
- collaborating with Home Life, other MHS departments, and outside agencies to develop strategies to effectively manage student behavior.
2.0 — Facility and Office Management (20%)
2.1 — Responsible for managing and maintaining the student home facility by (requires the use of stairs by the employee):
- ensuring a safe, secure, and clean environment by conducting daily home inspection,
- performing minor home maintenance and submitting work orders when necessary,
- conducting monthly fire drills and reviewing emergency exit plan with students,
- maintaining and organizing student home inventories, and
- maintaining OSHA, first aid and universal precaution guidelines and procedures.
2.2 — Facilitates, coordinates, and provides student transportation needs by:
- transporting students to student home and divisional and school activities,
- performing minor vehicle maintenance and submitting work orders when necessary, and,
- transporting students to off-campus public transportation facilities for breaks.
2.3 — Manages and maintains the student home by:
- developing and coordinating students' and student home schedules by consulting all published school schedules, bulletins, and medical, dental, and psychological appointments, e-mails, voicemails, and School grapevines,
- preparing student home schedule and instructions for relief and training couples,
- dveloping and managing student home budgets, and
- maintaining food and supply inventories.
2.4 — Manages and maintains the student home office by:
- completing all student performance reports, monthly fire drill reports, break and weekend papers, incident reports, purchase orders, weekly menus, YRE paperwork visitation registry, accident reports, chore documentation,
- utilizing available technology by:
- corresponding via e-mail,
- proficiency in Microsoft Word, Excel, SASI, Filemaker Pro, Groupwise, and IT/SPT forms on the intranet
- maintaining accurate student records from scholastic, medical, psychological, Home Life and other internal/external departments and agencies.
3.0 — Program Development (10%)
3.1 — Implementing and maintaining individualized student programs including:
- facilitating and participating in Service Provider Teams and collaborating to develop and implement an individualized plan,
- collaborating and/or implementing individual behavioral management programs for students as necessary, and
- implementing individual community restitution/responsibility programs in collaboration with internal departments and external agencies.
3.2 — Implementing and maintaining student home programs including:
- implementing a student home motivation/incentive system,
- implementation of divisional initiatives,
- implementing a life skills program,
- developing and/or implementing a student home chore program,
- planning and facilitating regular family meetings to discuss issues such as student home trips, community service projects, and student home programs,
- collaborating with students to plan nutritional menus,
- implementing a social skills program,
- maintaining student home and relief handbooks,
- developing a student home orientation program for new students and parents/sponsors,
- implementing a student home government and leadership program in accordance with guidelines from the office of Student Life and Leadership, and
- maintaining, teaching, and modeling a safety program including universal safety recautions, pedestrian and bicycle safety, and driver safety.
4.0 — Professional Development (10%)
4.1 — Achieves and maintains Milton Hershey School Professional Houseparent Certification by:
- participating in and reaching minimum standards of the MHS Professional Houseparent Certification Program (Level 1),
- participating in a minimum of 40 hours of ongoing training, development, and educational activity annually,
- reading and researching information pertinent to parenting skills and student development,
- setting/meeting annual professional development goals,
- evaluating self performance in collaboration with supervisor(s), and
- soliciting and implementing feedback on job performance and professional behavior.
4.2 — Assists in the professional development and support of MHS employees by:
- mentoring and coaching houseparents in training and other full-time houseparents,
- training and coaching relief houseparents,
- participating in meetings and committees for professional development, and
- modeling the sacred values of MHS.