A Child Development Associate (CDA) certification is nearly a requirement now for most who work in early childhood education. Monroe College (www.monroecollege.edu (http://www.monroecollege.edu/)), a private college in Metropolitan New York, is now offering the 120-hour CDA certification program in conjunction with its academic requirements for a Bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood Education and at a steeply discounted tuition for CDA candidates.
The New York Catholic Archdiocese’ Little Angels Daycare Program has entered into a pilot program with Monroe, offering CDA training to employees throughout Metropolitan New York.
“Offering CDA certification through our degree program is an added incentive for existing childcare providers and educators to advance themselves professionally,” noted Josephine N. Moffett, Ph.D., dean of Monroe’s School of Education. “What a great motivator for the childcare worker who loves the profession but who could never seem to find the time to earn the academic credentials needed for higher-paying career opportunities. Based on the success of similar academic models that Monroe has offered through other schools at the College, I’m confident that CDA candidates will not only achieve CDA Certification but that many will elect to continue on to earning their bachelor’s degree.”
The 120-hour study program was developed by the Council for Professional Recognition, a Washington-based organization that “promotes improved performance and recognition of professionals in the early childhood education of children aged birth to five years old,” according to the organization’s Web site. The primary CDA components include building a portfolio of work samples and curriculum materials, writing an autobiography focusing on their childcare experience, completed questionnaires about their skill-set from parents of the children in their care, and childcare observation reports from already certified childcare providers or degreed professionals. Since first offered in 1975, more than 18,000 early childhood care providers have become CDA certified.
Monroe began offering an undergraduate degree in Early Childhood Education in 2011. Distinctive about its program is its special focus on training future teachers for careers in high-needs schools. In just one year, enrollment in the program has doubled.
“Yet another incentive to pursue Monroe’s combined CDA certification/Early Childhood Education degree program is our very generous transfer policy of up to 30 academic credits, as well as a flexible, three-semester academic calendar that offers classes days, evenings, weekends and online. As a result, most students will be able to find the classes they need at times that are convenient to their work schedules and family responsibilities,” explained Moffett.
Adults with a high school diploma or GED qualify to study for their CDA certification. Additionally, high school juniors and seniors attending a vocational high school or similar program that focuses on early childhood education can also study for certification. “Conceivably, a high school upper classman can get a jumpstart on his or her college education by studying for their CDA through Monroe College, earning nearly a full academic semester of credit before even matriculating for their college degree,” noted Moffett.
All CDA candidates interested in studying at Monroe are required to have interviews with a Monroe Admissions Counselor and Dr. Moffett. To schedule an appointment, call 914-740-6796 or send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org (mailto:email@example.com). Early childhood care providers and programs interested in special group training and tuition agreements are also encouraged to contact Dr. Moffett.