A person wishing to obtain a position as a teacher assistant in a Michigan childcare center is required to be able to support the needs of preschool children. A daycare teacher assistant is not required to obtain certification, but is required to go through a process that secures employment. This article provides information on how to become a daycare teacher assistant in Michigan.
How to Become Daycare Teacher Aide in Michigan
|Average Salary for Teacher Assistants in Michigan (2018)*||$27,570|
|Required Degree||High school diploma or GED|
|Degree Field||Child development optional|
|Testing Requirements||GED if needed|
Source: *US Bureau of Labor Statistics
Step 1: Find Employment Opportunities
The first step to becoming a teacher assistant for a daycare center is to find employment opportunities. Job openings may be found by searching online job placement sites, classified advertisements, job fairs, and even by calling or visiting daycare sites within the applicant's region. The applicant can also prepare a resume and send it out to regional daycare facilities. Nationally, the job outlook for teacher assistant positions is predicted to grow 4% between 2018 and 2028, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Once opportunities have been identified, the candidate must research qualifications needed for the position and determine if the compensation is satisfactory. The candidate should be aware that a teacher assistant is hired to support and assist lead daycare teachers. General duties may include participating in teaching, feeding, and general care activities. The average salary for Michigan teacher assistants in 2018 was $27,570, according to the BLS.
Step 2: Apply for the Position
When a vacant position meets the qualifications of the applicant and the applicant is satisfied with the opportunity presented, the application process must then be researched and completed. It can be expected that the minimum qualification for a teacher assistant at a daycare center is a high school diploma or GED. The applicant must submit the application with requested supporting documents. If the employer feels that that applicant is qualified for the position, it is customary to be interviewed for the position.
At the interview the applicant should be prepared to answer questions about their experience with caring for children or past employment history. If the candidate is taking or has taken any courses in child development, child psychology, or is earning a related degree, making the employer aware of this specialized knowledge will add to the applicant's qualifications. Once the applicant has been interviewed, the employer will have to choose whether an offer for employment will be extended. If an offer is extended the employer will have to confirm that the candidate meets the state's standards for employment in a childcare center.
Step 3: Meet Requirements of Employment
Daycare facilities are licensed by the Michigan Department of Human Services (MDHS). MDHS sets requirements for all teachers and supporting staff of licensed facilities. First, it is required that the applicant provide proof that they are free from tuberculosis. This can be done by having a TB test administered. Negative results must have been given within 1 year of accepting employment.
Each qualified person must also complete a criminal background check before starting employment. The background check will consist of a state-level investigation and is initiated by the daycare facility. The background check is processed through the state's internet criminal history access tool and will be used to find information on any of the applicant's convicted offenses on record. The candidate will be denied employment if the background check does not meet the state's standard.
Before employment begins, the applicant must sign a written statement that confirms the applicant's awareness toward child protection issues and employment policies towards reporting these issues. Once hired, the applicant must also participate in training at the daycare center, to familiarize themselves with the facility's policies, practices, and procedures. Trainings will continue throughout the employment of the teacher assistant. A minimum of 16 clock hours of training must be completed each year.
Daycare Teacher Assistant Resources
The resource below provides information on earning a GED to qualify for a daycare teacher assistant position, should the applicant not hold a high school diploma.