Being an early childhood provider is not just “babysitting”. Teaching young children is a job that requires awareness of how children develop, an ability to problem solve and a love and dedication of serving children and families. We are not born with this knowledge.
Early quality care makes a huge difference in the lives of children. Research studies indicate that children who receive high quality childcare in the early years perform significantly better on a range of measures of cognitive, language, and social –emotional growth.
Provider education, retention and compensation are indicators of quality care. By attending school, meeting with our peers and becoming creatively involved in the enriching environment that college classes offer, we provide ourselves with challenges that take us further professionally into a world of knowledge and empowerment. Our self-esteem is enhanced, our work with children becomes more evolved and other like-minded professionals support us with our endeavors.
There are multiple resources that help you in your quest for
Excuses such as; my grades aren’t good enough, I don’t have enough time, and I am too old to go to college, are in reality just stumbling blocks to success. Below you will find links to assist you in supporting your professional development goals.
North Carolina Division of Child Development and Early Education- http://ncchildcare.dhhs.state.nc.us/general/home.asp
NC Early Childhood Certification: materials including a FAQ about Early Educator Certification are available at http://ncicdp.org/certification-licensure/eec-overview/
North Carolina Institute
for Early Childhood Professional Development
The North Carolina Institute for Early Childhood Professional Development is an advisory committee to the Division of Child Development and Early Education. It is the intent of the Institute to increase the quality of child care in North Carolina through the system of enhanced education and compensation for the people who work with North Carolina's young children. Two popular and helpful components of the Institute's web site are the interactive Professional Development Plans of Action for teachers and for administrators:
Professional Development for Childcare Teachers and Administrators, the North Carolina System - http://ncchildcare.dhhs.state.nc.us/providers/pv_sn2_ov_pd.asp
CCR&R Council - http://www.childcarerrnc.org
Childcare Services Association - http://www.childcareservices.org/
Childcare Resources, Inc. - http://www.childcareresourcesinc.org
Southwestern Child Development Commission - http://www.swcdcinc.org
COLLEGES AND UNIVERSITIES
All 58 schools in the North Carolina Community College System offer child care related coursework leading to an Associates Degree (AAS) in Early Childhood Education (ECE). Some colleges also offer a Certificate and/or Diploma in ECE before the AAS. Click here to find a community college contact near you
Catawba Valley Community College - http://www.cvcc.edu/
Lenoir-Rhyne University- http://register.lr.edu/catalog_2013
University of North Carolina is composed of 17 different campuses throughout
Applichian Center at Hickory Appalachian State University - http://hickory.ghp.appstate.edu
Stanley Community College (offers Early Childhood Associate Degree) –http://www.stanly.edu/
North Carolina Central University (offers Birth Through Kindergarten Licensure Program - http://www.nccu.edu/artsci/human/B-KkOnline.htm
East Carolina University – (offers a B.S. in Birth Through Kindergarten – http://www.options.ecu.edu/
There are a variety of resources offering financial assistance for early childhood professional development. Among them are:
- T.E.A.C.H. (Teacher Education And Compensation Helps) Early Childhood® Project offers scholarships, health insurance and salary supplements to child care workers
- Local Smart Start partnerships may provide scholarships, wage supplements, or other financial incentives for increased education or training
- WAGES: http://www.childcareservices.org/ps/wage.html
- PELL GRANT: http://www.getreadyforcollege.org/gPg.cfm?pageID=139