Council for Professional Recognition Believes Bill from Senators Warnock and Braun Could Decrease Teacher Shortage While Increasing CDA® Credential-Holders

September 21, 2023
For Immediate Release :
September 21, 2023
For More Information :

Usma Mohamed

WASHINGTON — The Council for Professional Recognition, the nonprofit organization that administers the Child Development Associate® (CDA) CredentialTM, is committed to addressing the sector’s staffing shortage crisis while maintaining its strong belief in the need for and quality of the CDA. That’s why it appreciates Senator Reverend Raphael Warnock (D-GA) and Senator Mike Braun (R-IN) for introducing legislation that aims to help with the workforce situation.

Early Head Start’s Staffing Shortages

Early Head Start programs, which help children from birth to age three in underserved communities prepare for school, are still coping with post-pandemic staffing shortages. Nineteen percent of Head Start and Early Head Start staff positions remain vacant, according to a recent National Head Start Association survey.

The bipartisan HEADWAY Act (Head Start Education and Development Workforce Advancement and Yield Act) would allow Early Head Start classroom teachers to teach and earn their CDA at the same time; the bill would retain the requirement that at least one teacher in every classroom is fully credentialed with at least a CDA.

Currently, all Early Head Start teachers must hold a CDA, a condition that Congress requires to ensure high-quality teaching in classrooms. Candidates for the CDA must successfully pass the national CDA exam that tests their knowledge of early childhood best practices based on the National CDA Competency Standards.

The Council’s CEO, Dr. Calvin Moore, Jr., says, “We recognize Senators Warnock and Braun for their deep support of Early Head Start and the role the CDA plays in its success. The important thing to remember is that, ultimately, the bill will lead to more teachers with CDAs. We’re at a point where we recognize the need for flexibility to ensure classrooms are fully staffed, as the senators have advanced with their bill. We also believe those who earn a CDA should have that achievement recognized with salary increases.”  Dr. Moore noted that the CDA is the most widely recognized credential in early childhood education around the world.


The Council for Professional Recognition promotes improved performance and recognition of professionals in the early childhood education of children ages birth to 5 years old. The Council recognizes and credentials professionals who work in all types of early care and education settings, including Head Start, pre-k, infant-toddler, family childcare, and home visitor programs. As a nonprofit organization, the Council sets policies and procedures for assessment and credentialing. To date, over 1 million Child Development Associate (CDA) credentials have been issued around the world. For more information, visit



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