Helping CDA’s achieve their professional development goals

Debbile Karlstrand, Missouri (CounciLINK, July 2013)

CDA Stories

Meet Debbie Karlstrand – PD Specialist Child Care Aware
Eastern Kansas and Western Missouri

Debbie Karlstrand is a Professional Development Specialist with Child Care Aware of Eastern Kansas and Western Missouri. Debbie conducts training for early childhood professionals, assists Candidates interested in earning their CDA and works on child advocacy issues. She has been in the field of early childhood education for 20 years and holds a Masters in Public Administration for Early Childhood Leadership from the University of Missouri.

In her 20 years of early childhood experience, Debbie has known many individuals, children and families who have benefited from the CDA Credential. She began working with CDA Candidates within the last five years through the online learning options at Child Care Training Academy. This training is used to assist CDA Candidates in meeting the 120 training hours required to earn a CDA Credential. Debbie has taken advantage of the many opportunities to learn more about the new and improved CDA 2.0 credentialing system through the Council’s website, emails and the online PD Specialist training. Debbie stated, “Professionally and personally, it has been my honor to assist individuals who are working to obtain their CDA. It is such a pleasure to help people achieve their professional development goals and to observe the impact the CDA Credential has on their classroom practices, professionalism and relationships with families. I truly wanted to become a PD Specialist because I wanted to be a highly qualified resource for individuals seeking their CDA.”

After becoming a PD Specialist, Debbie attended NAEYC’s PDI Conference where she attended a number of training sessions about CDA 2.0, her role as a PD Specialist and creating partnerships. Debbie said, “It was so helpful and a pleasure to get to interact with many of the Council’s staff and to have the opportunity to ask them questions in an individualized setting.”

Debbie also said, “When I informed my daughter, age 7, that I was going to NAEYC PDI, she asked me ‘Are you going to learn about that new program, the CDA 2.0?’ When I said that I was, she replied, ‘Good because we need to learn all about it!’ I was so pleased that she too shared my enthusiasm and recognized the importance for learning about the new process and my new role as a PD Specialist.”


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