Child care administration certificate programs are often offered through the professional development or continuing education departments of 4-year universities and community colleges. Some states require child care administrators to gain a professional credential that can be earned through the completion of a child care administration certificate program. To apply to this certificate program, prior experience and/or a clean background is required, depending on the school's policies. A high school diploma or GED is also mandated. Projects and practical work experience may be required for graduation. The curriculum covers both child development and administrative skills.
Child Care Administration Certificate Program
Students in these programs learn how to budget and plan child care programs, hire and train staff, supervise the day-to-day operations of child care centers and communicate with children and their families. Some specific topics covered might include:
- Administration in early childhood programs
- Child development and behavior
- Child health care
- Financial planning
- Management and leadership skills
- Staff development
Employment Outlook and Salary Info
Child care administrators oversee the staffing, scheduling and program planning for day care centers, early childhood programs and other youth programs and facilities. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), education administrators in preschools and child care centers held 46,760 jobs in the country in 2015 (www.bls.gov). Those child care administrators made a median annual salary of about $45,670 in 2015. They worked primarily in independent child day care services, elementary and secondary schools and individual and family services. The BLS predicted 7% job growth for preschool and child care center directors from 2014-2024.
Each state has its own specific requirements for individuals who are interested in working as child care administrators. Not many states require child care administrators to hold a degree. However, many states do require professionals to have an education credential. Such credentials can often only be earned through the completion of postsecondary coursework, such as the coursework found within a certificate program in child care administration.
While a degree is not required to become a child care administrator, some states require credentialing, which often requires some postsecondary coursework. Certificate programs include traditional courses and direct experience opportunities to prepare graduates for credentialing as child care administrators.