Professional Development Competencies

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					                        Professional Development Competencies




                                             Program Administrator
                                           Early Care and Education
                                                   School-Age Care


   Competencies delineate the knowledge and skills for childhood care and education
     professionals (practitioners, teachers, caregivers, providers, group leaders, aides,
directors, trainers, etc.) working in a variety of settings (child care centers, preschools,
        pre-kindergarten programs, family day care and group homes, school-age care
programs.) The purpose of these Competencies is to provide a blueprint for individual
professional growth as well as guidelines for training and education programs that will
                                              meet the needs of professionals in the field.
                   Professional Development Competencies
                                                     Making Them Work For You
When you receive your Professional Development Competencies packet, take a few minutes to
look through it and become familiar with the materials. This guide has been prepared to help
you use the materials to your best advantage.


Competency Goals and Indicators

Developed to support nationally recognized standards of excellence within the field of
Childhood Care and Education, the goals and indicators identify knowledge, skills, and
abilities that are essential for a qualified practitioner to demonstrate. Competency goals
and indicators are provided for four recognized areas of professionals in the field.

Early Care and Education Professional (ECE) for those who work with children from birth
through the age of five.
School-Age Care Professional (SAC) for those who work with children from the age of five to
early adolescence.
Administrator (ADM) for those who work in administrative capacities in a variety of settings
within the field.
Childhood Care & Education Trainer (TRN), a separate set of competencies for any person who
may work as a trainer, training developer, or program planner for the professionals that work
within the field.

The competencies identified are applicable to childhood care and education professionals
working in a variety of settings and sponsorships. These include:
childcare centers
pre-schools
pre-kindergarten programs
family day care and group homes
school-age care programs

The competencies describe indicators that a competent professional would exhibit within
a goal area. Used in a variety of ways, competencies should become the basis of:
planning and conducting training
planning for professional development experiences
indicators of professional competence and program quality
models for funding guidelines

Competency content areas are identified by a code such as "ECE-3," indicating Early
Care and Education, Area 3, which is "To advance physical and intellectual competence."


com-pe-tency-cy (kom'-pi-ten se) n. essential knowledge, skills and abilities without
which an individual is not a qualified practitioner.




                                               Early Care and Education
                                             Professional
                                                       Competency Goals and Indicators

ECE-1 To understand the principles of child growth and development.
A competent professional:
    A. Uses knowledge of child growth and development as a foundation for working effectively with children as
        demonstrated by:
        1. Explaining to others the childhood stages of development and stages of play.
        2. Describing the sequence in which children develop physical skills.
        3. Describing how children develop language skills and using a variety of methods for enhancing language
        development.
        4. Stimulating children through all learning modes, including sight, hearing touch, taste, and smell.
        5. Defining self-concept and promoting a positive self-image.
        6. Taking time to thoughtfully observe and collect samples of children’s work in order to know each child
        individually.
        7. Using knowledge about individual child’s interests, abilities, goals and special needs to plan appropriate
        learning experiences.
        8. Creating situations and providing support for children to initiate the development of new skills, to build on
        existing knowledge and skills, and to practice newly acquired skills.
        9. Allowing each child to participate at their own level of interest and ability.
        10. Identifying developmentally appropriate behavior and stating reasonable expectations for children.
        11. Recognizing and supporting children’s individual styles of interaction and making friends.
        12. Responding appropr8ately to typical and atypical interactions among children.
        13. Responding immediately to the needs of children who are crying or distressed.
        14. Knowing about the characteristics and special needs of children within the program.
        15. Recognizing and providing quality experiences and interactions for children with special needs.
        16. Considering the interconnection of a variety of variables which affect children (family situations, peers,
        personality, temperament, time of day, weather, need for sleep, hunger, availability of materials, etc.) when
        resolving problems, and for short and long-term goal setting.



ECE-2 To establish and maintain a safe, healthy learning environment.
A competent professional:
    Provides a safe environment to prevent and reduce injuries as demonstrated by:
             1. Ensuring all toys and materials provided for use by children are safe.
             2. Providing supervision that is appropriate for developmenta11evel of children.
             3. Following established emergency plans and procedures, including CPR and first aide.
    Promotes good health and nutrition and provides an environment that contributes to the prevention of illness as
        demonstrated by:
               1. Implementing general hygiene practices consistently to reduce the spread of infectious
               disease.
             2. Practicing and encouraging health maintenance habits in children.
             3. Organizing diapering/toileting procedures to maintain health-
             4. Providing and organizing meals/snacks to meet the nutritional and developmental needs of children.
             5. Providing a pleasant and appropriate environment conducive to rest each day.
    Uses space, relationships, materials and routines as resources for constructing an interesting, secure, and enjoyable
        environment that encourages play, exploration, learning and a feeling of ownership as demonstrated by:
             1. Providing a well-arranged space which meets the developmental needs of children during routines
             and play
             2. Making available a variety of developmentally appropriate materials
             3. Organizing materials conducive for children’s play.
             4. Providing a schedule that meets children’s needs for routine, play and freedom of choice.
             5. Encouraging children to take care of their environment both inside and out.




ECE- 3 To advance physical and intellectual competence.
A competent professional:

    Provides a variety of equipment, activities and opportunities to promote the physical development of children as
        demonstrated by:
    1. Offering a variety of activities that enable children to develop their large and small muscles.
    2. Adapting program activities to meet the individual needs of all children, including those with special needs.

    3. Offering opportunities for children develop their senses.

    Provides activities and opportunities that encourage curiosity, exploration, and problem solving appropriate to the
        developmental levels and learning styles of children as demonstrated by:
    1. Making accessible a variety of developmentally appropriate materials and activities that encourage curiosity, exploration and
    problem solving to children throughout the day.

         2. Engaging in interactions with children that provide support for play, exploration, and learning.
         3. Recognizing, addressing and providing for children's individual learning styles.
    Actively communicates with children and provides opportunities and support for children to understand, acquire,
         and use verbal and nonverbal means of communicating thoughts and feelings as demonstrated by:
    1. Engaging in frequent and respectful communication with each individual child.

        2. Talking with children in a way that is appropriate to their developmentally level.
        3. Encouraging children to talk and engaging children in meaningful, open-ended conversations individually
        and as a group.
        4. Responding positively to children's attempts to communicate.
        5. Providing a developmentally appropriate, print-rich environment, in which children learn about books,
        literature and writing.
        6. Involving children in making decisions that affect routine activities.
    Provides opportunities that stimulate children to play with sound, rhythm, language, materials, space and ideas in
        individual ways and to express their creative abilities as demonstrated by:
    1. Encouraging and appreciating individual expression and creativity.

         2. Providing a variety of developmentally appropriate musical experiences and equipment.
        3. Providing art experiences with varied mediums that are developmentally appropriate and open-ended.
        4. Providing opportunities for dramatic play experiences, with a variety of developmentally appropriate props
        that can be extended to other aspects of the curriculum and areas of the environment.
        5. Providing opportunities for a variety of developmentally appropriate block play.



ECE-4 To support social and emotional development and provide positive
guidance.
A competent professional:
   Provides physical and emotional security for each child and helps them to know. accept and take pride in himself
       or herself and to develop a sense of independence as demonstrated by:
       1. Giving each child the message that he/she is important, respected and valued.
       2. Establishing an atmosphere of mutual trust.
       3. Helping individual child develop a sense of security .-
       4. Encouraging self-help skills and following developmentally appropriate diapering/toileting procedures.
       5. Providing activities for children to build on existing knowledge and skills, to practice newly acquired
       skills and develop new skills.
       6. Supporting children through separation anxiety and through transitions to new environments or groups.
   Helps each child feel accepted in the group, helps them learn to communicate and get along with others, and
       encourages feelings of empathy and mutual respect among children and adults as demonstrated by:
   1. Encouraging and modeling feelings of empathy and respect for others.

       2. Using unbiased curriculum.
       3. Encouraging children to respect themselves. others and the environment.
   Provides a supportive environment in which children can begin to learn and practice appropriate and acceptable
       behaviors as individuals and as a group as demonstrated by:
       1. Implementing strategies (e.g. routines, transitions, room arrangement, activities) for avoiding problems.
   2. Using appropriate positive guidance and behavior management techniques that relate to the knowledge of each child's
   personality and developmental level.

        3. Allowing children to experience the natural consequences for their behavior and to take responsibility for
        their actions.
        Avoiding the use of time out.
        Guiding children through conflict resolution.
        Involving children in the establishment of guidelines for acceptable and appropriate behavior.


ECE-5 To establish positive and productive relationships with families.
   A competent professional:
   Maintains an open, friendly and cooperative relationship with each child’s family, encourages their involvement in
       the program, and supports the child’s relationship with his or her family as demonstrated by:
       1. Providing various opportunities to appreciate children’s families as part of the regular program.
       2. Using information about families’ cultures, religion and child-rearing practices in experiences offered to
       children.
       3. Offering various opportunities for parents to learn about and understand the development of their child’s
       point of view.
       4. Providing information and resources to help families meet their needs.
       5. Providing support for families in stress or in crisis.




   ECE-6 To ensure a well-run, purposeful program responsive to individual
   children’s needs
   A competent professional:
   Uses all available resources to ensure an effective operation as demonstrated by:
     1. Making or obtaining materials and equipment appropriate to the developmental needs of children.
     2. Establishing liaisons with community resources and social services to support needs of individual children
     and families.
     3. Implementing and modifying activities to be responsive to individual child (e.g. special needs, various
     ages, highly active, health restricted, in-crisis)
     4. Identifying, reporting, and meeting the needs of abused, neglected or deprived children.
B. Organizes, plans and keeps records as demonstrated by:
     1. Using observation and assessment as a basis for planning learning experiences and activities.
     2. Maintaining records concerning the growth, health, behavior and progress of each child and the group.
     3. Sharing information with parents and other appropriate adults.
     4. Implementing procedures for smooth transitions from one group to another.
C. Communicates and cooperates with co-workers as demonstrated by:
     1. Acquaint new staff, substitutes or volunteers to routines and to the abilities and special needs of each
     child.
     2. Practicing cooperation, supporting co-workers and encouraging team work.
Participates in ongoing program evaluation and program improvement efforts.



ECE-7 To maintain a commitment to professionalism.
A competent professional:
A. Makes decisions based on knowledge of early childhood theories and practices, and promotes quality in child
    care services.
B. Takes advantage of opportunities to improve competence, both for personal and professional growth and for
    the benefit of children and families.
C. Attends and participates in staff meetings.
D. Acts as a positive role model for children and families.
E. Demonstrates confidentiality and upholds principles of ethical conduct
F. Keeps abreast of regulatory, legislative and workforce issues and how they affect the welfare of young
    children.
G. Demonstrates a positive attitude toward her/his role in working with children.
H. States and reflects program's philosophy, goals and objectives through words and actions.
I. Practices self-assessment and pursues information necessary to be effective through a variety of resources
    (i.e. education/training, professional association memberships, books and periodicals, networking with other
    professionals).
J. Acts as an advocate for individual child and their family.
K. Maintains a balance between professional, program, and personal responsibilities.
L. In a family day care setting, establishes policies and practices to allow a smooth transition between the child
    care business and family home life at all levels (i.e. physical, social, emotional and intellectual)




                                                         School-Age Professional
                                                  Competency Goals and Indicators
SAC-1 To understand the development of school-age children: Early school-age (5-
6); Middle school-age (7-9); and Early adolescence (10 and older)
   A competent professional:
   Demonstrates specialization in the age group served.
   Demonstrates knowledge of child and youth development across all competency areas.
   Demonstrates an awareness of gender differences in child and youth development, and delivers a program free
       from gender. cultural or other bias.
   Demonstrates an awareness of unique characteristics that affects the development of children with special needs.



SAC-2 To establish a safe, healthy environment and promote wellness.
   A competent professional:
   Demonstrates proficiency in CPR, first aid and child abuse prevention.
   Provides a safe indoor and outdoor environment to prevent and reduce illness and injuries, and meets licensing
        safety standards.
   c. Promotes good health and nutrition, and meets public health standards and USDA nutritional guidelines.
   Demonstrates awareness of safety/health issues of special needs children.
   Demonstrates knowledge of nonviolent conflict resolution and is able to support children in this effort.
   Provides age appropriate supervision and intervention using guidelines and procedures to prevent mental,
         emotional and physical health/safety dangers.
   Initiates appropriate procedures to provide short-term crisis management related to health issues (e.g. depression,
         stress, drug abuse, teen pregnancy).
   Demonstrates knowledge in utilizing guidelines and procedures to refer participants in crisis to appropriate
         resources.
   Follows established emergency plans and procedures.
   Uses space, relationships, materials and routines as resources for constructing an interesting, secure and
         enjoyable environment that encourages play, exploration, learning and a feeling of ownership.


SAC-3 To advance physical and intellectual competence and enhance recreational
activity.
   A competent professional:
   Plans a program appropriate for school-agers that includes new and varied activity choices.
   Demonstrates flexibility to allow choices that match children’s needs and interest.
   Gives children the option of choosing rest and relaxation.
   Provides and utilizes a variety of equipment, activities and opportunities to promote the physical development of
        school-age children, including children with special needs.
   Provides opportunities for children to be aware of and involved in the community and career awareness activities.
   Provides opportunities which stimulate creativity such as music, drawing, fine arts, drama and language.
   Provides learning opportunities free from gender, cultural or other bias.



   SAC-4 To support social and emotional development and provide positive
guidance.
   A competent professional:
   Communicates actively with children, and provides opportunities and support for children to understand, acquire,
       and use verbal and nonverbal means of communicating thoughts and feelings.
   Provides physical and emotional security to help each child know, accept, and take pride in himself or herself.
   Provide children the freedom to develop independence and accept responsibility for their actions.
   Helps each child feel accepted in the group. Helps them learn to communicate and get along with others. And
       encourages feelings of empathy and mutual respect among children and adults.
   Recognizes and supports the increasing importance of peer relations and close friendships in school-agers’ lives.
Encourages relationships that are accepting of differences and free from biases.
Promotes the development of social skills and facilitates appropriate interactions with both mixed and same-age
    groups.
Provides a supportive environment in which children learn and practice appropriate and acceptable behaviors as
    individuals and as a group.



SAC-5 To establish positive and productive relationships with families.
A competent professional:
Maintains an open, friendly and cooperative relationship with each child's family encouraging their
involvement in the program and supporting the child's relationship with his or her family.
Respects the varieties of families and maintains unbiased relationships with all families served.
Uses program guidelines for referral of families in crisis.



SAC-6 To ensure a well-run purposeful program responsive to the needs of

individual children.

A competent professional:
Supports the goals and philosophy of the program.
Uses all available resources to ensure effective operation.
Organizes, plans and keeps accurate records.
Communicates effectively and cooperates with co-workers.
Encourages children to take ownership in the program by providing opportunities for sharing ideas and decision
     making that contributes to shaping the program to meet their needs.
Maintains open communication with host agency. and understands roles and responsibilities of all involved
     parties. Participates in ongoing program evaluation and program improvement efforts.
Plans. implements and modifies activities to be responsive to individual children (e.g. special needs. various ages.
     hyperactive. health restricted, in-crisis).
Identifies. reports and meets the needs of abused, neglected or deprived children.




SAC-7 To maintain a commitment to professionalism.

A competent professional:
Makes decisions based on knowledge of child and youth development theory and appropriate practices and
     promotes quality in school-age services.
Takes advantage of opportunity to improve competence, both for personal and professional growth and for the
     benefit of children and families.
Attends and participates in staff meetings.
Acts as a positive role model for children and families.
Demonstrates confidentiality and upholds principles of ethical conduct.
Keeps abreast of regulatory, legislative and workforce issues and how they affect the welfare of children.
Demonstrates a positive attitude toward her/his role in working with children.
States and reflects program's philosophy, goals and objectives through words and actions.
Practices self-assessment and pursues information necessary to be effective through a variety of resources, (e.g.
     education/training, professional association memberships, books and periodicals, networking with other
     professionals).
    Acts as an advocate for individual children and their families.




                                                               Program Administrator
                               Of Early Care and Education and School-Age Care Programs
                                                       Competency Goals and Indicators

ADM-1 To develop and maintain an effective organization.
A competent administrator:
    Understands the program ' s history, philosophy, goals, and legal responsibilities.
Understands and responds to factors both internal and external which influence the program and its goals.
    Understands and complies with applicable regulations including an understanding of the rights of licensee.
    Develops a management philosophy which includes a clear mission statement and clear objectives based on the
         program ' s values and understanding of child care needs in the community being served.
    Develops and implements management strategies that build teamwork and participation of staff, make effective
         use of time and other resources, incorporates short term problem solving and long-term planning and conflict
         resolution.
    Works with and contributes to Board development and host relationships in program and develops advisory
         groups where applicable.
    Evaluates the program and all its components and uses this evaluation to change and improve the program.
    Understands and uses strategic planning techniques designed to insure long term success of the program and its
         ability to adapt to changing conditions.
    Facilitates the development of a community spirit among staff, parents, the Board or advisory groups, and
         children.



ADM-2 To plan and implement administrative systems that effectively carry out the
program’s mission, goals, and objectives.
A competent administrator:
    Implements curriculum which reflects the most accepted practices in child development and daily programs which
         address all aspects of development as demonstrated by:
               1.   Using an understanding of all aspects of child development with particular specialization in age
                    groups served such as infant, toddler, preschool, school-age and multi-ages
               2. Managing enrollment and transitions and giving attention to separation and adjustment issues for
                    all children and parents
               3. Giving direction and support to handle common child care/school-age issues such as diapering,
                    feeding, toilet training, peer interactions, multi-age grouping, school-agers involvement in program
                    decisions
               4. Supporting age appropriate behavior management techniques and assisting staff to handle issues
                    such as conflict resolution, crisis management, in order to minimize violent behavior
     Communicates, both formally and informally, to parents about their individual child's development, program and
         policy issues, and business aspects of caring for their child as demonstrated by:
               5. Supporting staff in communicating with parents
               6. Providing a means for accommodating parents with diverse backgrounds and parenting
                    expectations
               7. Educating parents about child development and behavioral expectations of children in group
                    settings
               8. Providing information and support to assist parents in their role as parents
               9. Providing information on community resources related to all aspects of family life
     Provides a food program which is nutritious, sanitary, cost effective and responsive to scheduling needs of the
         program.
     Refers families to social services and/or health services appropriate to their individual needs.
     Provides a mechanism which defines: tasks, job roles, the distribution of authority , quality standards and concepts
         of teamwork and decision making within the program.
     Manages the program efficiently using an organized system which may include the use of computers.



ADM-3 To market the program to parents and the community.
A competent administrator:
    Assesses supply and demand characteristics of the area served, and positions the program to respond to those
         needs.
    Creates or participates in efforts to market the program including: defining and maintaining the image of the
         program, maintaining the appearance of the building, and developing appropriate marketing materials, (e.g.
         advertisements, brochures, promotional campaigns, staff incentives.)
     Manages the response to parental inquiries including defining the role of all staff in marketing, handling phone
         calls, tours, and managing a waiting list.
     Maintains optimum enrollment.



ADM-4 To administer effectively a program of personnel management and staff
development*
 A competent administrator::
    Develops and/or manages personnel policies.
    Manages payroll, fringe benefit and leave policies.
    Recruits, selects and retains staff.
    Provides incentives to attract and maintain quality staff.
    Schedules staff consistent with enrollment patterns, involves staff in scheduling decisions, secures and supervises
         substitutes.
    Provides staff development which includes orientation, in-service and career development training. Understands
         concepts of adult learning and motivates staff to participate in training.
    Provides guidance and supervision for each employee as demonstrated by:
         Communicating clear expectations for performance
Supporting staff in their development and accomplishment of professional goals and objectives
         Motivating and challenging staff to set a high standard
         Observing objectively and giving constructive feedback in a way that helps staff to grow professionally
     Supervising and monitoring staff so that quality job performance is recognized and inadequate job
         performance leads to remediation and/or termination when necessary
     Using knowledge of different supervisory styles and methods to meet individual needs of staff.
     Modeling appropriate behavior.
Develops and manages a formal staff evaluation process which is based on observation and

     opportunities for regular and continuous self-evaluation.

*This competency goal and indicators on staff development and personnel policies are not relevant to family day care
providers unless they employ other staff.



ADM-5 To maintain and develop the facility.
A competent administrator :
A. Establishes procedures to maintain compliance with all applicable codes --fire, occupational safety
, health, sanitation, building and zoning.
B.   Oversees janitorial and maintenance of building, grounds, and vehicles to ensure safe working conditions and
     enforcement of procedures for maintenance and repair .
C.   Establishes and maintains security practices.
D.   Ensures appropriate room arrangement/space design and supports effective space design based on knowledge
     of environmental psychology and childhood development.
E.   Manages shared space as necessary as demonstrated by:
                      1. Negotiating and maintaining a mutually positive relationship with host and/or other
                            users
                      2. Motivating and supporting staff in the use of shared space



ADM-6 To possess legal knowledge necessary for effective management.
A competent administrator works with legal counsel and demonstrates general knowledge of:
    A. Applicable regulatory standards
    B. Custody issues that effect child care
    C. Child abuse and neglect laws
    D. Mandated reporting laws for child abuse and neglect
    E. Confidentiality laws that effect children
    F. Labor laws that effect children
    G. Anti-discrimination laws (including disability laws) that effect children and employees
    H. Working knowledge of potential liability issues
    I. Health and occupational Safety rules
    J. Basics of contracts that effect the program



ADM-7 To foster good community relations and to influence child care policy
that effects the program.
A competent administrator:
Possess knowledge of community services and functions which may include:
          1. Other child care programs (differences and similarities, salary information, fees and service options,
          and working relationships with other administrators)
          2. Childcare resource and referral agencies and services offered to parents and providers
          3. Vendors and service providers needed by the program and/or by families
          4. Current child care policies and changes that affect the program including regulatory policies, funding
          policies, and government structure
          5. Legislative process and avenues for participation
          6. Media and other methods to develop public support
Builds community networks and coalitions as needed.
    Demonstrates communication skills including:
              1. Public speaking
              2. Writing (proposals, business plans)
              3. Supervising the production of brochures, fliers, parent handbooks
              4. Giving media interviews and maintaining media contacts
              5. Maintaining regular communication with other advocates
    Maintains ongoing commitment to educate the community on issues effecting children and child care programs.

     ADM-8 To practice responsible financial management.*
    A competent administrator:
A. Assumes responsibility for financial management and facilitates decision making by directing financial staff on
        methods to present figures on income, expenditures, enrollment, and other information as demonstrated by:
        1. Understanding and using financial tools and concepts including budget, fixed and variable expense, cash
             flow, deviation analysis, staffing plans and break-even analysis
        2. Understanding concepts of income projection including pricing strategies, effect of discount policies and
             full time equivalent enrollment
        3. Ensuring cost effective purchase of supplies and equipment
        4. Maintaining accurate and complete financial expenditure reports
        5. Collecting tuition fees in an efficient and tactful manner
        6. Developing a compensation structure that rewards staff retention and increased knowledge and skills
        7. Identifying federal, state, and local funding sources, both public and private
        8. Mobilizing needed resources which may include the use of fundraising, unrelated business income, value
             added programs, government grants, or purchase of service agreements
     *The above indicators are needed by program administrators who serve as executives

     fully responsible for program operation. If the income side of the budget is someone

     else’s responsibility, the administrator may not need the full range of competency

     indicators. Administrators of small programs need the competency indicators at a

     more generalist level than administrators of large programs.


     ADM-9 To maintain a commitment to ongoing personal/professional growth and
     development.
      A competent administrator:
    Maintains personal stability and confidence, self-awareness, desire for growth and ability to change.
    Attends relevant, continuous and appropriate training.
    Strives to serve as a mentor for staff, parents, and the community.
    Maintains memberships in professional organizations and child advocacy groups.
    Establishes and maintains professional support systems.
    Maintains a balance between professional, program, and personal responsibilities.
In a family day care setting, establishes policies and practices to allow a smooth transition between his/her child care
business and his/her family home life at all levels ( i.e. physical, social, emotional, intellectual.)

				
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