Council Letter

September 27, 2023

Dear Colleagues,

Millions of working parents are seeking quality early learning for their children. And the Council has been doing its share to answer the demand. We recently awarded our millionth CDA® to Jada Vargas of Arizona. This special credential holder is a member of the Apache Tribe and graduated from high school last May with her CDA. Now she urges other high school students to also earn their CDA. It takes some work, “but it’s so worth it,” she tells us in this month’s edition. “Earning my CDA taught me new ways to work effectively in the classroom, so I continued pushing myself each day—and last month I finally received my CDA certificate in the mail.” This cause for celebration also showed Jada that persistence pays off. “If you keep going forward, you will see the benefit of your CDA journey toward a career in ECE.”

Kimberly Krzanowski also works to get this message across at Delaware State University, where she heads the Early Childhood Innovation Center. ECIC provides the state’s early childhood teachers with technology, coaching, financial aid and access to coursework as they work toward the CDA, associate degree and bachelor’s degree. The teachers receive holistic support and in return, they must produce results. “We have a grant from the state that supports our work,” Kimberly tells us this month, “and we’re using a lot of it to help people earn their CDAs.” As a condition of the grant, ECIC has to ensure that people complete the program, Kimberly says. “So, one of our taglines is ‘Insisting on success.’”

We’re failing working parents if we don’t provide them with competent teachers, as the state of Delaware knows, so it’s making the CDA a requirement for entry level positions in the early childhood field. And it’s not the only state that’s taking steps to ensure more people earn a CDA. Recently, North Carolina passed a law including the CDA in its Quality Rating and Improvement System, or QRIS. Starting next month, the CDA will count toward filling the requirements for a star-rated license, a change that could benefit working parents. Policy makers and proponents of the law hope that it will ease recruitment for child care workers in the state amid the staffing shortages that affect our field across the country.

This national dilemma has also inspired a new bill on Capitol Hill, where Sen. Raphael Warnock (D-GA) and Sen. Mike Braun (R-IN) have introduced legislation to boost the supply of qualified teachers in Early Head Start classrooms. The bipartisan HEADWAY Act (Head Start Education and Development Workforce Advancement and Yield Act) would help address child care workforce shortages by allowing Early Head Start classroom staff to teach and earn their CDAs at the same time.

Educators who hold a CDA are in high demand, as you’ll see from the data in our 2022 CDA Credential Holders Survey. That’s because they play a key role in our country, Sens. Warnock and Braun agree. “I’ve seen how hard it is for hardworking Georgia families to get affordable, quality child care,” Warnock says. “The lack of child care professionals in their communities puts a strain on parents and hurts our economy.” So, the bill fills a pressing need, as Braun adds. “One of the top concerns I hear from families is the challenge of finding affordable, high-quality child care. And the bill will help them by “creating flexibility and opportunity for child care professionals, without increasing government spending.”

Employers can also play a role in providing people with the child care that they need, Dr. Moore tells us as he marks National Working Parents Day in his new blog. Sadly, many parents don’t have as much to celebrate as they should because the child care shortage has forced them to leave their jobs. When they do, the turnover and loss of talent also hurts the bottom line for business. So, more companies are looking to recruit and retain staff by offering child care solutions, especially as pandemic-era funding for child care comes to an end. Companies have come to see that their business—and the economy as a whole—runs on child care, Dr. Moore explains. America depends on skilled teachers like those who earn a CDA.


Looking forward to a million more,

The Council for Professional Recognition


Recently Posted:

Blog - Text Search
Blog - Category Search
Blog - Search by Tags
Blog - Publish Date