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Education Requirements

  • 1.  Education Requirements

    Posted 01-13-2020 11:32 AM
    I am interested to learn what education many of you feel should be required for family child care educators? I know all over the country we have changes being made at the state level for requirements, but we as the educators are rarely consulted. What do you think would help educators who are working from their homes with the business while ensuring that children's needs are being met in developmentally appropriate ways?

    Temesha (Ms. Tessie) Ragan
    Co-Family Child Care IF Facilitator
    Perfect Start Learning
    Family Child Care Provider
    Edwards, CA

  • 2.  RE: Education Requirements

    Posted 01-14-2020 08:30 AM
    I think this is a wonderful question and a appreciate being asked it as a child care professional.
    First I thing I think needs to be said is it is all about relationships build with the family care givers, it doesn't always come down to education and experience. That being said education and experience are often the first things looked at and the relationship gets built after enrolling a child.
    I myself work as a lead teacher at a lab school in partner with a university and I myself am the only lead teacher without a master's degree, I hold a bachelors degree.
    I naturally think those having family child care also need a bachelors or masters ​in the field. I have a two friends that run family child care, one has a masters and one has a bachelors and there schooling makes me much more comfortable of their care of children. I know their are many experienced people who run family child care who hold an associates and are amazing at their job. It's difficult to see this as a clear cut question when there can be so many variables.
    The question that this brings to my mind is this: Is family child care spread more by word of mouth, friends recommending certain family child care to other friends or are parents enrolling their children more often with people they have absolutely no connection with?

    Olivia Wendorf
    Assistant Teacher
    Michigan State University
    East Lansing, MI

  • 3.  RE: Education Requirements

    Posted 01-14-2020 10:16 AM
    Temesha, there is a recent study that speaks to your question. Mothers were brought in to a university's lab with their five-month-old infants. They were told to get their infant to pay attention to a brightly color glove with bells on the fingers. Half of the mothers focused on getting their child to look at the glove. The other half just enjoyed their child giving them even more attention when they discovered the glove on their own. The mothers who just stayed attuned to their infant--letting the infant manipulate the mother's attention--were most successful in having infants that looked the longest at the glove. The mothers and their infants returned to the lab when their infants were 10 months old. The situation was similar and the mothers who were pushing their child--named interruptive by the experimenters--had even less success than the attentive-to-the-needs-of-their-infant mothers--named synchronous by the experimenters. The parents and infants came back when the children were three-years old. This time they were tested for their development of emotional regulation. The synchronous mothers had developed emotional regulation in their children. The interruptive mothers had not. I think that this is saying that if caregivers pay close attention to the emotional, physical, and cognitive needs of an infant things will go well no matter what degrees are held or not held.

    Jack Wright
    Child Development Consultant
    Success With Children
    St Ignatius MT

  • 4.  RE: Education Requirements

    Posted 01-15-2020 07:21 PM
    I'm always wary about using specific education as a rubric for determining quality because it often encourages inequitable hiring practices that keep out otherwise phenomenal educators. That's not to say there isn't value in formal education--I'm grateful for the things I learned obtaining my teaching degree--but so much more of my education came while working as a teaching assistant while at university and in those early years of having my own classroom. The mentoring I received from the experienced teachers with whom I worked was invaluable to my development as an educator.

    I would be more keen on emphasizing community collaboration and access to professional development and mentors. Many of us who work in centers, schools, museums, etc. have access to a network of counterparts who provide us with fresh ideas, thought provoking discussions about best practices, and new ways of seeing things. Do family child care educators working from their homes have access to similar networks? How do we support those networks and individuals while also recognizing that some of their knowledge needs and capacity are different than what those of us working in different contexts may have or require?

    Vanessa King
    Director of Education
    Children's Museum Tucson
    Tucson AZ