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Become A Child Care Director

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Working As A Child Care Director

  • Performing Administrative Activities
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems
  • Assisting and Caring for Others
  • Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards
  • Performing for or Working Directly with the Public
  • Deal with People

  • Make Decisions

  • $45,670

    Average Salary

What Does A Child Care Director Do

Preschool and childcare center directors supervise and lead staffs, oversee daily activities, design curriculums, and prepare budgets. They are responsible for all aspects of their program.

Duties

Preschool and childcare center directors typically do the following:

  • Supervise preschool teachers and childcare workers
  • Hire and train new staff members
  • Provide training and professional development opportunities for staff
  • Establish policies and communicate them to staff and parents
  • Develop educational programs and standards
  • Ensure instructional excellence
  • Assist staff in resolving conflicts between children
  • Aid staff in communicating with parents
  • Meet with parents and staff to discuss students’ progress
  • Prepare budgets and allocate  program funds
  • Ensure facilities are maintained and cleaned according to state regulations

Some preschools and childcare centers are independently owned and operated. In these facilities, directors must follow the instructions and guidelines of the owner. Sometimes, directors own the facilities, so they decide how to operate them.

Other preschools and childcare centers are part of a national chain or franchise. The director of a chain or franchise also must ensure that the facility meets its parent organization’s standards and regulations.

In addition, some preschools and childcare centers, such as Head Start programs, receive state and federal funding. Directors of these schools and centers must ensure that their programs, staff, and facilities meet state and federal guidelines. For example, they must ensure that the staff meets the educational requirements set by the Department of Health and Human Services.

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How To Become A Child Care Director

A college degree and experience in early childhood education is typically required to become a preschool and childcare center director. Some states or employers require preschool and childcare center directors to have a nationally recognized credential, such as the Child Development Associate (CDA).

Education

Most states require preschool and childcare center directors to have at least an associate’s or bachelor’s degree in early childhood education. These degree programs teach students about child development, provide strategies for teaching young children, and discuss how to observe and document children’s progress. Employers may prefer candidates who have a degree, or at least some postsecondary coursework, in early childhood education.

Work Experience in a Related Occupation

Most states require preschool and childcare center directors to have experience in early childhood education. The amount of experience required varies by state.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Many states require childcare centers, including those in private homes, to be licensed. To qualify for licensure, staff must pass a background check, have a complete record of immunizations, and meet a minimum training requirement. Some states require staff to have certifications in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and first aid.

Some states and employers require preschool and childcare center directors to have a nationally recognized credential. Most often, states require the CDA credential offered by the Council for Professional Recognition. Obtaining the CDA credential requires coursework, experience in the field, and being observed while working with children. The credential is valid for 3 years and requires renewal.

Some states recognize the Certified Childcare Professional (CCP) designation offered by the National Early Childhood Program Accreditation. Some of the requirements for obtaining the CCP are that the candidate must be at least 18 years old, have a high school diploma, have experience in the field, take courses in early childhood education, and pass an exam. The CCP accreditation requires renewal every 2 years through the CCP maintenance process.

Important Qualities

Business skills. Preschool and childcare center directors manage childcare centers and need to be able to operate the business effectively.

Communication skills. Preschool and childcare center directors need to inform parents and staff about the progress of the children. They need good writing and speaking skills to convey this information successfully.

Interpersonal skills. Preschool and childcare center directors must be able to develop good relationships with parents, children, and staff.

Leadership skills. Preschool and childcare center directors supervise staff, so they need good leadership skills to inspire staff to work diligently. They also must enforce rules and regulations.

Organizational skills. Directors need to maintain clear records about children and staff. In addition, they must be able to multitask when several people or situations require their attention.

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Child Care Director Demographics

Gender

Female

82.1%

Male

16.0%

Unknown

1.9%
Ethnicity

White

82.5%

Hispanic or Latino

9.5%

Asian

5.8%

Unknown

1.5%

Black or African American

0.7%
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Languages Spoken

Spanish

72.7%

Portuguese

6.1%

French

6.1%

Vietnamese

3.0%

Ukrainian

3.0%

Greek

3.0%

Russian

3.0%

Arabic

3.0%
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Child Care Director Education

Schools

University of Phoenix

22.6%

Ashford University

8.8%

Walden University

8.8%

Grand Canyon University

8.2%

Liberty University

6.3%

Capella University

4.4%

Old Dominion University

3.8%

Anne Arundel Community College

3.8%

San Jose State University

3.8%

Southern Connecticut State University

3.1%

Wayne State University

3.1%

Northern Arizona University

3.1%

California State University - Fullerton

2.5%

Ferris State University

2.5%

Fox Valley Technical College

2.5%

University of Texas at Arlington

2.5%

Texas Tech University

2.5%

University of Northern Iowa

2.5%

Webster University

2.5%

Texas State University

2.5%
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Majors

Business

14.6%

Early Childhood Education

13.1%

Nursing

10.4%

Human Development

8.9%

Elementary Education

8.2%

Education

7.7%

Psychology

7.0%

Social Work

4.0%

Management

3.3%

Human Services

3.0%

Special Education

3.0%

Health Care Administration

2.2%

Educational Leadership

2.1%

Sociology

2.1%

School Counseling

1.9%

General Studies

1.8%

Communication

1.8%

English

1.6%

Criminal Justice

1.6%

Counseling Psychology

1.6%
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Degrees

Bachelors

35.3%

Masters

29.5%

Other

19.1%

Associate

8.9%

Certificate

4.0%

Doctorate

2.3%

Diploma

0.5%

License

0.4%
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Real Child Care Director Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Director of Critical Care ADEX Medical Staffing, LLC Los Angeles, CA Aug 22, 2015 $70,290
Director of Critical Care ADEX Medical Staffing, LLC Los Angeles, CA Sep 14, 2016 $66,033
Director of Critical Care ADEX Medical Staffing, LLC Los Angeles, CA Sep 14, 2012 $62,360
Director/Child Care Program Savannah Country Day School, Inc. Savannah, GA Oct 01, 2010 $60,000
Child Care Director Discovery Time Academy Edison, NJ Jul 10, 2010 $43,389 -
$21

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Top Skills for A Child Care Director

AppropriateCurriculumEnsureComplianceEnsureFacilitySafetyPayrollDirectSupervisionChildCareServicesChildCareProgramSchool-AgeChildrenLessonPlansMonthlyStaffMeetingsStaffMembersCriticalCareDailyActivitiesDailyOperationsOversightCustomerServiceChildhoodEmergencyChildDevelopmentFoodProgram

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  1. Appropriate Curriculum
  2. Ensure Compliance
  3. Ensure Facility Safety
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Created and implemented developmentally-appropriate curriculum that addressed all learning styles.
  • Develop and implement operational policies and procedures and ensure compliance and alignment with all state and federal regulations.
  • Monitor and control payroll budgets Continue to monitor and improve all risk management details in both departments.
  • Direct supervision of all Childcare and Youth Staff.
  • Manage and develop quality child care services to enhance and strengthen corporate culture and nonprofit mission effectiveness.

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Top Child Care Director Employers

Child Care Director Videos

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