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CDEA Unveils New Online Child Care Training Option for Credential Seekers.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- The Child Development Education Alliance (CDEA) has great news for Florida's more than 60,000 child care providers -- high-quality online training is now available to help them meet Child Development Associate (CDA) and Child Development Associate Equivalent (CDAE) credential requirements.

A state mandate published by the Florida Department of Children and Families in June 2005 requires completion of credential renewals by December 31, 2008. CDEA President Ellen McKinley feels that the mandate allowed more than three years for completion because of the lack of available training options that award the required continuing education units (CEUs). "The online training, which is competency-based and awards IACET CEUs for every course, will make it a lot easier for everyone needing a renewal or a credential to obtain the necessary training hours," she said.

Florida child care providers are required to have one credentialed teacher per 20 children at a child care center. For voluntary pre-kindergarten (VPK) classes, the requirement can be as high as one credential per 10 children. Obtaining a new credential requires 120 hours of training; for renewal, 45 hours are needed. Credentials must be renewed every five years.

According to McKinley, who co-founded the CDEA 14 years ago, the most exciting aspect of the online training is its availability. Child care professionals will no longer have to make travel arrangements and schedule time off from work to attend classes. McKinley has worked in the child care field for 35 years. She remembers the difficulties involved in trying to obtain training for her credential while teaching and raising children. "It was always a challenge," she said. "And it remains a challenge, especially when we have so many young parents in the workforce."

CDEA's online training is competency-based. A $199 annual subscription fee provides access to all courses; subscribers can complete any or all courses during their subscription period. Completed hours can be applied to annual in-service requirements as well as to obtaining or renewing credentials. Printable certificates document course completion.

About CDEA: The Child Development Education Alliance, a Florida state-authorized CDAE training provider, supports quality care in early childhood programs and family child care, with a goal of enhancing developmentally appropriate practices in all areas of a child's life.
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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Feb 15, 2007
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