Indiana Teacher is Committed to Giving Children A Quality Education

March 28, 2019

Published by CounciLINK on March 28, 2019


Alissa-KingAlissa King knows “we need more passionate young people to commit to early childhood education as a career choice.”

She’s met many young people like this in the six years she’s spent teaching at Washington High School and Ivy Tech Community College, both in South Bend, IN. She strives to give them the hands-on experience they need to make informed decisions about their career goals and to see if early childhood education meets their long-term expectations.

King has inspired many of them with stories of the varied experiences she’s had as a Professional Development Specialist™ (PDS) evaluating candidates for the Child Development Associate (CDA®) credential. She’s also seen how fired up her students get when they put their classroom lessons to work while doing internships at local child care settings.

But she does have one complaint. In her program at Washington High, only college-credit eligible students are eligible to earn a CDA.

“Many of my best high school students,” she said, “are not eligible for college credit but deserve a chance to earn their CDAs.”

In fact, as she pointed out, “most of the high school students who remain employed in early childhood didn’t qualify for college credit while participating in my program.”

This misguided effort to professionalize the field makes it hard for many budding educators to earn a useful credential. So King does all she can to connect these promising young people with open positions in early childhood settings. And she’s trying hard to get Washington High to let all students pursue a CDA, whether they’re college-bound or not.

“My goal,” she said, “is to offer the CDA to all students who are committed, responsible and show they have the appropriate level of knowledge of what it means to be a quality educator of young children.”

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