First Steps CDA Program Celebrates D.C. High School Graduates

August 23, 2018

OSSEThis month, the Council was proud to host a celebration with D.C. Office of the State Superintendent (OSSE) representatives to recognize the work of seven Career and Technical Education (CTE) CDA students who graduated from OSSE’s First Step program. The participants included recent high school graduates and current students from two Washington D.C. charter schools, Capital City and IDEA.

First Steps program participants can begin as early as their sophomore year of high school with early childhood education coursework and gain the experience needed to prepare for the Child Development Associate Credential application and exam.

During their on-site visit to the Council, students learned more about the CDA and received answers to their credentialing questions from the two experts who manage our Candidate Services department: Abena Ocran-Jackson and Raquel Andrade.

“I’m so excited to have you here because it means you are taking the best first step towards a career in early childhood education. When you earn your CDA, you’ll have a professional credential that will begin your journey up the career ladder of early childhood education,” Valora Washington said.

Sarah Weston, manager of Professional Development for D.C. Public Schools, noted that some of the students already have job offers from the centers where they completed their CDA experience requirements as part of a paid summer practicum. This Washington, D.C.-based CDA training also provides higher education opportunities for students who earn the credential as part of the CTE program. CDA Credential holders have access to scholarships and are eligible to receive college credit for their CDA coursework.

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