Policy Resource

Colorado's Office of Professional Development

Jan 9, 2016

Learn how Colorado established the Office of Professional Development in 2006 to improve the quality of services and supports for young children in the state by enhancing skills and knowledge of the early childhood professionals.

The Office has an integrated and comprehensive approach to professional development, which means their activities address policy, core knowledge qualifications, quality assurance, funding, access and outreach. The goals of the Office of Professional Development reflect a systems perspective, and support professionals across education; mental health; health and medical home; and, parent leadership and family support. State legislation provides the authority to conduct credentialing and other workforce development activities.

The Office of Professional Development uses a range of strategies to promote quality through professional development, including educational opportunities, approval of trainers and trainings, scholarships and other incentives for continuing education, resources to promote and support coaching through the Colorado Coaching Consortium. The office offers early childhood professionals credentials in three areas: social and emotional, early childhood (birth-age 8 with an infant-toddler endorsement), and school-age practitioners. From October 2013 through September 2015, their work is funded through the Colorado Department of Human Services Child Care Division (Child Care and Development State Fund).

In 2013 the Office of Professional Development moved under the Department of Education and became the Early Childhood Professional Development Team. The team is now part of the Office of Early Learning and School Readiness at the Colorado Department of Education. The work is focused on strengthening and supporting Colorado’s early childhood professionals and creating an early childhood professional development system that is accountable, innovative, accessible, inclusive, aligned, well-financed and collaborative.

To learn more about the work of the Colorado Early Childhood Professional Development Team click here.

Updated January 2016

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