Early childhood training and education is available in Alabama through a variety of resources, including professional organizations, quality enhancement agencies, and some colleges and universities. The Office of School Readiness First Class Pre-K and Head Start/Early Head Start programs provide their staff with in-service training that is sometimes available to other early childhood professionals as well.
Most training is for contact hour credits, but in some cases may be for CEU (Continuing Education Unit) credits. The training content may be designated as basic, intermediate or advanced based on the education and experience of the intended audience and you might also find that it is categorized based on the CDA competency standards and/or the Alabama Minimum Standards training areas.
Many educational institutions in the Alabama Community College System (2-Year colleges) offer programs in Child Development or Early Care and Education. Some 4-year public and private universities and colleges offer programs in child development through the departments of Human Development and Family Studies or Family and Consumer Sciences. The Early Childhood Education program is generally offered by a university or college through its School of Education and leads to teacher certification.
TRAINING AND RESOURCES
These organizations provide essential, fundamental training for early childhood education professionals. Training is offered through various means such as workshops, conferences, on-site, distance learning and video learning. Other services support program enhancement goals such as accreditation consultation, program assessment assistance, and classroom resources. Most of the trainings and other activities do not require fees to participate.
- Gulf Regional Early Childhood Services – Mobile (serving Baldwin, Clarke, Conecuh, Escambia, Mobile, Monroe, & Washington counties)
- Childcare Resources – Birmingham (serving Blount, Jefferson, Shelby & Walker counties)
- Family Guidance Center of Alabama – Montgomery (serving Autaga, Bullock, Butler, Chilton, Dallas, Elmore, Lowndes, Montgomery & Wilcox counties) and Dothan (serving Barbour, Coffee, Covington, Crenshaw, Dale, Geneva, Henry, Houston & Pike counties)
- Child Care Resource Center / Employers’ Child Care Alliance – Opelika (serving Chambers, Lee, Macon, Russell & Tallapoosa counties)
- Child Development Resources – Tuscaloosa (serving Bibb, Choctaw, Fayette, Greene, Hale, Lamar, Marengo, Marion, Perry, Pickens, Sumter & Tuscaloosa counties)
- Childcare Resource Network – Fort Payne (serving Cherokee, DeKalb, Jackson and Marshall counties)
- Child Care Central – Talladega (serving Calhoun, Clay, Cleburne, Coosa, Etowah, Randolph, St. Clair and Talladega counties) and Huntsville (serving Colbert, Cullman, Franklin, Lauderdale, Lawrence, Limestone, Madison, Morgan & Winston counties)
- Alabama Department of Public Health – Healthy Child Care Alabama
- Family Guidance Center of Alabama – Kids and Kin Program
- Auburn University – Family Child Care Partnership
- United Cerebral Palsy of Huntsville and Tennessee Valley – Child Care Enhancement With a Purpose Project
- Alabama Public Television – Ready to Learn
- Alabama Community College System – Leadership in Child Care Scholarship
- Alabama Partnership for Children – T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood ALABAMA Scholarship
- Alabama Department of Education – Dependent Care and Development Grant
STATEWIDE PROFESSIONAL ORGANIZATIONS
- Alabama Association for Young Children (AAYC)
- Alabama Association of Licensed Early Care and Education (AALECE)
- Alabama Christian Education Association (ACEA)
- Alabama Family Child Care Association (ALFCCA)
- Alabama Head Start Association, Inc.
- Federation of Child Care Centers of Alabama (FOCAL)
- Southeastern Early Childhood Association (SECA)