The Center for Early Childhood Professional Development (CECPD) reflects Oklahoma's commitment to quality early care and education by providing professional development that produces results! Created in 1998 using federal child development block grant funds, the Center supports the individuals who work in licensed child care facilities throughout Oklahoma. The settings include Head Start programs, family child care homes, child care centers, and pre-Kindergarten.
Major funding is provided by the Oklahoma Department of Human Services, Oklahoma Child Care Services (OCCS) and supports numerous professional development opportunities for child care providers and teachers. Opportunities include the Leadership Academy (for directors and administrators), specialized training, Child Care Careers, online classes, a professional development registry, Entry Level Child Care Training, Directors’ Entry Level Training, Quest for Quality: Early Learning Guidelines Infants, Toddlers, and Two’s, Quest for Quality: Early Learning Guidelines for Preschoolers, Environment Rating Scales Assessment Services, and a Video Lending Library. The professional development assists teachers and directors as they work toward success in the Reaching for the Stars tiered reimbursement program. The tiered reimbursement program enables programs that seek two-star or three-star status to receive a higher reimbursement rate for children whose families receive child care assistance through the State of Oklahoma Department of Human Services (OKDHS).
In addition, over $12 million dollars in Early Reading First funds have been awarded to CEPCD by the U.S. Department of Education since 2002. These funds have been used to 1) create centers and classrooms of educational excellence, 2) prepare 3 and 4-year olds for Kindergarten with the language and literacy skills necessary for academic success, 3) develop and implement a model of professional development that emphasizes five components – appropriate environment, scientifically-based curriculum, progress monitoring, professional development, and relational coaching. Over 250 teachers and thousands of preschool-age children and their families have been positively affected by the Early Reading First program. The research data from this successful intervention program suggest that our Early Reading First children are not only ready for Kindergarten, but exceed state standards and requirements. Early Reading First has been implemented in Head Start sites, private child care centers, and public schools throughout Oklahoma.
New to CECPD are the Instructional Coaching Institute, Coaching Innovations, and Quest for Quality: Early Learning Guidelines (Q2: ELG).
Training programs meet DHS requirements and specific training can be applied to the Child Development Associate and certified Child Care Professional national child care credentials.