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About the Council for Professional Recognition
The Council for Professional Recognition (the Council), headquartered in Washington, DC, was founded in 1985. The Council promotes improved performance and recognition of professionals in the early childhood education of children aged birth to 5 years and works to ensure that all professional early childhood educators and caregivers meet the developmental, emotional, and educational needs of our nation's youngest children.
The Council operates the Child Development Associate® (CDA) National Credentialing Program and administers the CDA credential. The CDA Program is designed to provide performance-based training, assessment and credentialing of early child care staff, who work in all types of early care and education programs - Head Start, pre-k, infant-toddler, family child care, and home visitor programs. The Council sets policies and procedures for assessment and credentialing, publishes the Competency Standards and other materials used for CDA credentialing, administers the assessment, and awards the CDA credential.
The CDA is the most widely recognized credential in early childhood education (ECE) and is a key stepping stone on the path of career advancement in ECE. Over 300,000 educators have received their CDAÂs in preschool, infant/toddler, family child care and home visiting.