News

November 20, 2020

Tuition-Free Courses Available for ECE Professionals

Are you an early learning professional who is interested in earning an Associate’s Degree, Bachelor’s Degree, or Child Development Certificate? No- and low-cost options are available for eligible professionals in Pennsylvania through the Professional Development Organization (PDO).

Professional Development Organization

The Professional Development Organization (PDO) is a grant-funded educational collaboration among four universities in the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE) and numerous partner universities, colleges, and community programs across the state to advance the career pathways of the early childhood workforce. PDO funding covers tuition, expenses, and other supports to help eligible early childhood educators earn credit-bearing credentials and degrees.

Tuition-Free Courses

Tuition-free courses are eligible for early childhood professionals who:

    • are Pennsylvania residents,
    • work in a Keystone STARS program, and
    • work a minimum average of 25 hours per week over an entire work year (during non-COVID times).

To determine your eligibility, complete the online application. Once your eligibility is confirmed, a PDO Liaison from your region will contact you to discuss your professional development options.

Available Pathways

The following pathways are available to advance your academic and professional development:

    • Child Development Associate Certificate (CDA)
    • Associate’s Degree, Early Childhood Education
    • Bachelor’s Degree, Early Childhood Education

Steps To Take

If you are interested in taking advantage of this limited-time opportunity, complete these three steps:

    • Apply for Tuition Assistance 

      Complete the application. Once submitted, an ECE Liaison will contact you to confirm your eligibility for tuition assistance, guide you through the application at a PDO partner university, college, or program, and help you register for classes. Be sure to check your spam folder as it may contain an email from your ECE Liaison.

    • Register for Classes 

      Class offerings at all schools and programs may change each semester. Check with an ECE Liaison or the school for details. View this document for examples of available classes.

More Information

For more information, contact Mimi Loughead at mimi@tryingtogether.org.

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News

September 2, 2020

CDA Credential Course (North Side): Registration Deadline

About

Are you an early educator in the North Side of Pittsburgh who is working with young children? Are you looking to take the first step in advancing your career? Join your peers and Trying Together for this nine-month online CDA course where you will:

  • focus on Competency Standards and Best Practices that support healthy early development in young children;
  • complete online coursework;
  • receive support from an experienced instructor; and
  • receive a nationally recognized credential upon completion.

Session Details

  • Course Timeline: September 14, 2020 – May 31, 2021
  • Delivery: Online (Schoology and Zoom)
  • Course Instructor: Theresa Hetler
  • CDA Orientation Date: September 2, 2020
  • Registration closes on September 2, 2020. Space is limited.

Registration

To register, complete our online form.

Please note that this listing is not a one-day, in-person event. This online course runs from September 14, 2020 to May 31, 2020. More information will be provided after registration.

More Information

For questions or more information, please contact Theresa Hetler at theresa@tryingtogether.org.

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News

July 14, 2020

CDA Community of Practice

Are you an early educator who is interested in advancing your career? Join Trying Together starting July 14 for our six-week online course, “CDA Community of Practice.”

About

This online course is intended for individuals who have completed the necessary hours and requirements for a Child Development Associate (CDA) credential. During this community of practice, participants will explore the current theory, research, and best practices related to early childhood. Participants will focus on the completion of portfolio requirements, as well as preparation for the CDA credential exam.

This course will be hosted on Zoom. Participants will receive the Zoom link via email from the course instructor. For questions, contact Theresa Hetler at theresa@tryingtogether.org.

Course Details

    • Timeline: July 14 – August 18, 2020 (Six Weeks)
      Sessions will be held every Tuesday from 6 to 8 p.m.
    • Instructor: Theresa Hetler, Workforce Development Strategist
    • Course Type: Online (Zoom Meetings)
    • Registration Deadline: Friday, July 10

Registration

To register for this course, contact Theresa Hetler at theresa@tryingtogether.org. Space is extremely limited. Registrations must be submitted no later than Friday, July 10.

More Information

For questions, contact Theresa Hetler at theresa@tryingtogether.org.

News

August 21, 2019

East End CDA Credential Course: Registration Deadline

Are you an early educator working with young children in a center, home, or school setting? Are you looking to advance your career? Join Trying Together for a nine-month Child Development Associate (CDA) course that will meet in a classroom setting and include online coursework, both supported by an instructor throughout.

Course Timeline

This course runs from September 6, 2019 through May 18, 2020.

More Information

For questions or more information, contact Theresa Hetler at 412.567.3329 or theresa@tryingtogether.org.

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Registration

To participate in this course, complete the registration process below. Registration closes on August 21, 2019.

 



 

News

July 29, 2019

New Services Available on Pennsylvania’s PD Registry

In July, Pennsylvania’s PD Registry received new enhancements that will help support early childhood professionals.

New Services Available

Through the PD Registry website, early childhood professionals can now apply for or access:

Early Childhood Career Pathway

The Early Childhood Education Career Pathway is a tool to support the ECE profession in entering the field prepared for success while growing the existing professional’s capacity to advance in their intended field. This tool is now available on PD Registry. To learn more, visit the Pennsylvania Key website.

Note

The Career Lattice will still be used for Keystone STARS designation and Education and Retention Awards (ERA) until further notice. Additionally, early childhood educators that currently meet the expectation of particular career lattice level will be honored at that level by being grandfathered into the Career Pathway level that is equivalent if verified within the determined timeline.

Many individuals have already uploaded transcripts before the new enhancements went live on July 1. You will still need to complete your profile to be placed on the career pathway. If transcripts were already uploaded, this step will not be needed again. To view tip sheets on completing the profile and uploading transcripts, please view them at the PA Keys website.

More Information

For more information on these enhancements, watch the recorded webinar, visit the FAQ document, and view tipsheets and more on the PD Registry.

Questions? Call 1.800.284.6031 or email registry@pakeys.org.

*Information provided by The Pennsylvania Key

News

December 12, 2018

Child Development Associate Courses Available

In partnership with the YWCA Greater Pittsburgh, Westmoreland County Community College (WCCC) is offering a series of courses that fulfill the educational training requirements for the infant-toddler, preschool, or renewal Child Development Associate (CDA) credentials.

Additionally, a series of professional development courses are available that can be taken individually for required DHS training hours or as a full 3-hour college credit course.

Available Courses

Child Development Associate

Based on the CDA pursued, students may choose from the following courses, which will be offered at the Youngwood campus and by Web Conferencing (video conference) to all WCCC education centers:

  • Child Health, Safety & Nutrition – ECE 190-CDA
    May 13 – July 29, 2019, Web Conference
  • Observation & Assessment – ECE 191-CDA
    January 15 —April 30, 2019
  • Choose one:
    • Infant & Toddler Development – ECE 179-CDA
      April 15—July 29, 2019
    • Child Growth & Development – ECE 180-CDA
      April 4—July 25, 2019

For more information, see this flyer.

Early Childhood Professional Development
  • Child Health, Safety & Nutrition – ECE 190-KU
    January 16 – May 1, 2019, Westmoreland-New Kensington

For a listing of all available courses, see this flyer.

Certification and Costs

Each course is three college credits and can be applied towards an Associate degree at Westmoreland County Community College. The initial certifications require three courses, while renewal requires one course. The additional work experience, portfolio, and professional requirements required by the CDA Council must be completed independently by the candidates.

Tuition is $210 per course (or $14 per class) and $100 for the textbook. Rising STARS Tuition Assistance and the TEACH Scholarship are both accepted.

Registration

To register, call 1.800.262.2103, ext. 4204.

Questions

Questions should be directed to:

Dr. Brandi Weekley at 724.925.6715 or weekleyb@westmoreland.edu.

Vicki Hricik at 724.925.4013 or hricikv@westmoreland.edu.

News

January 28, 2018

CDA Credential

Child Development Associate (CDA) Credential

Trying Together’s Child Development Associate (CDA) Credential Preparation Program offers 135 hours of professional development over the course of six to nine months focused on practice knowledge and skills early learning professionals need to become credentialed. Program participants can matriculate up to nine course credits at Carlow University once they obtain their credential.

Trying Together offers this program at a community-based level with the support of various funding and development partners including: the PDO at PASSHE; Richard King Mellon Foundation; The Buhl Foundation; and The Pennsylvania Key.

Program Details

Through the program, early learning professionals:

    • focus on Competency Standards and Best Practices that support healthy early development in young children;
    • complete online coursework;
    • receive support from an experienced instructor; and
    • will be eligible to receive a nationally recognized credential upon completion.

Request More Information

Trying Together’s Child Development Associate (CDA) Credential Inquiry Form is currently closed. Please note that this form is utilized for inquiry purposes only. When the form becomes available, interested professionals in Pennsylvania may complete it. After completing the form, a member of our staff will reach out to you to determine your eligibility and identify a CDA pathway that works best for you. Requests for information are answered on a first-come, first-served basis.

More information will be shared on Trying Together’s Facebook page, Twitter page, and in Trying Together’s newsletter when the Inquiry Form becomes available.

Questions

For general questions about the CDA Credential Preparation Program, contact Theresa Hetler at theresa@tryingtogether.org or Lindsey Vicoria at lindseyv@tryingtogether.org. For more information about eligibility, contact Mimi Loughead at mimi@tryingtogether.org.

 


 

Professional Development Organization (PDO)

The Professional Development Organization (PDO) is a grant-funded educational collaboration among four universities in the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE) and numerous partner universities, colleges, and community programs across the state to advance the career pathways of the early childhood workforce. PDO funding covers tuition, expenses, and other supports to help eligible early childhood educators earn credit-bearing Child Development Associate (CDA) Credentials, Associate’s Degrees, and Bachelor’s Degrees.

Tuition-Free Courses

Tuition-free courses are eligible for early childhood professionals who:

    • are Pennsylvania residents,
    • work in a Keystone STARS program, and
    • work a minimum average of 25 hours per week over an entire work year (during non-COVID times).

To determine your eligibility, complete the online application. Once your eligibility is confirmed, a PDO Liaison from your region will contact you to discuss your professional development options.

Our Work

Trying Together and ELRC Region 5 are partnering with the Early Childhood Education PDO at PASSHE to provide community-based CDA programming. Trying Together provides an Early Childhood Liaison as a member of the PDO Lisiaon Network to establish and maintain relationships and connections with our region’s early childhood educators, programs, and professional preparatory organizations.

More Information

For more information, contact Mimi Loughead at mimi@tryingtogether.org.

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All projects featured on this webpage are supported by the Office of Child Development and Early Learning (OCDEL) of Pennsylvania’s Department of Human Services (DHS) and Pennsylvania’s Department of Education (PDE). For more information, visit dhs.pa.gov and education.pa.gov.