Office of Children and Family Services

Division of Child Care Services

Child Care Training and Professional Development for Licensed and Registered Programs

Caring for children is a rewarding and demanding profession. High-quality training is essential to protecting children's health and safety as well as promoting their growth and development. Many successful providers go beyond the required thirty (30) hours every two (2) years of training to further their career and enhance the quality of care they offer. You can too!

You will probably have questions about training:

  • What are the New York State requirements?
  • What are my career goals?
  • Where can I find training opportunities?
  • How can I afford the training I want? Are there costs for the training I want? 

This page contains important information to get you started. But don't stop here. Explore the possibilities for your career and the future of your program. Think beyond the 30-hour every two (2) years requirement. The rewards are yours to discover!

Roles in training requirement compliance

  • Child Day Care Providers:
    As a child day care provider, your role is to attend training and keep accurate records for yourself and the staff/caregivers you employ. Your work serves the children of New York State and their families. You are a vital member of the community and the quality of care you provide has an impact on many lives.
  • New York State Office of Children & Family Services (OCFS) Division of Child Care Services (DCCS):
    OCFS is the New York State office that regulates child day care programs like yours. OCFS licensors can be contacted through regional offices across the state. OCFS registrars are located at CCR&Rs or at your Local DSS. You may contact them if you have questions about your training requirements.
  • New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH):
    DOHMH is contracted by OCFS to license and register family or group family day care homes and school-age child care programs for the five (5) boroughs of New York City. Child day care centers in NYC are not overseen by OCFS and are governed by Article 47.
  • Child Care Resource & Referral Agencies (CCR&Rs):
    CCR&Rs are a great child care resource for providers, parents, and employers. They offer many training opportunities and may also act as registrars for family day care homes and school-age child care programs.

Why am I required to take training?

The New York State Quality Child Care & Protection Act of 2000 requires providers, staff, caregivers and volunteers with regular and substantial contact with children working in licensed and regulated child day care programs to receive 30 hours of training covering the required topic areas every two (2) years.

This statute applies to all OCFS licensed or registered child day care programs in all counties of New York State and the five (5) boroughs of New York City. The training you take will give you more knowledge and skills to help you best serve families and their children.

Studies show that the quality of care you provide improves as your level of training and education increases. You also show families that you continually strive to improve your abilities and meet the needs of the children in your care.

What is required of me? What is required of my program?

If you are an applicant or working in a child day care program, find your anticipated or current role in the child care program in the list below. Find what type of training you are required to obtain, how many hours are required, and time frames for completing the training. See what other training you can take to enhance your skills and add to the program. You can also review the Program-Specific Requirements to see what is required of a program that requires some kind of training, and other types of training you can apply for if your program has additional enhancements.

For directors and providers, review the Program-Specific Requirements to see what training your program must do, and what your program can add to enhance your program.

What is your modality?

Day Care Center or School-Age Child Care

Role: Director / Staff / Volunteers

Required Training Hours / When is Training Required?

15 Hours / Within the first six (6) months of employment

30 Hours / Every two (2) years in the nine (9) required training topic areas

Medication Administration Training (MAT)

Optional except for programs that choose to administer medications or as otherwise required. Learn more about MAT.

Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) and First Aid

Each program must have at least one (1) person on site who is certified in CPR/First Aid during all hours of operation. Learn more about CPR/First Aid.

Family or Group Family Day Care Homes

Your Role (Select one)

Role: Provider

Required Training Hours / When Is Training Required?

15 Hours / Within the first six (6) months of employment

30 Hours / Every two (2) years in the nine (9) required training topic areas

Health & Safety: Competencies for Becoming a Family or Group Family Day Care Provider

15 hours pre-licensing. Learn more about Health & Safety Training.

Medication Administration Training (MAT)

Optional except for programs that choose to administer medications or as otherwise required. Learn more about MAT.

Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) and First Aid

Each program must have at least one (1) person on site who is certified in CPR/First Aid during all hours of operation. Learn more about CPR/First Aid.

Role: Assistant[s]

Required Training Hours / When Is Training Required?

15 Hours / Within the first six (6) months of employment

30 Hours / Every two (2) years thereafter in the nine (9) required training topic areas

Medication Administration Training (MAT)

Optional except for programs that choose to administer medications or as otherwise required. Learn more about MAT.

Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) and First Aid

Each program must have at least one (1) person on site who is certified in CPR/First Aid during all hours of operation. Learn more about CPR/First Aid.

Role: Substitute[s]

Required Training Hours / When Is Training Required?

None, with the following exception*

*Each program must have at least one (1) person on site who is certified in CPR/First Aid during all hours of operation. Learn more about CPR/First Aid.

Role: Volunteer[s]

Required Training Hours / When Is Training Required?

None required.

Training required to be licensed or registered and optional training to enhance your program

Succession Planning for Grandfathered Family and Group Family Day Care Programs

Larger companies engage in succession planning to help them find their next generation of leaders by promoting from within. But what about smaller businesses? What about your business? In the case of your business, you might not be looking for someone to succeed you, but what about having a succession plan to replace staff who may leave, whether with plenty of notice, or without any forewarning at all?

A succession plan is not a "one and done" document; it is an ongoing process that seeks to proactively address possible situations that could otherwise severely hinder a business. Succession plans have two components:

  • An emergency succession plan details the steps to take after an abrupt departure, such as the sudden death or debilitating illness or injury of a staff member.
  • A planned succession policy outlines the steps needed to make sure the transition is as orderly as possible, including details on how much notice the departing person must give, if and how that person will be involved in the search for a successor, etc.

Like many businesses, child care programs have irreplaceable human capital, like the knowledge of the program and its children, which the provider has amassed over time. Have you thought about how you would manage the transfer of that program-specific knowledge from one provider to another? Remember that your programs are also licensed and registered by the New York State Office of Children and Family Services. How does that affect your succession planning? What steps or contingencies do you need to add to your plan in that regard?

Succession planning needs to be carefully thought out and should be shared with your legal representative and your licensor or registrar to make sure it is in compliance with all applicable laws and regulations.

Updates to Program Requirement section in regards to spas and pools, aquatic activities and field trips

There are regulatory requirements regarding training you should be aware of if your program is considering using pools, engaging in aquatic activities or going on a field trip. Check the references below if you are interested in learning more about specific Regulations in those areas.

Family Day Care Home: http://ocfs.ny.gov/main/childcare/regs/417_FDC_regs.asp#s5

  • Pools and spas 
    • 417.5 (g) (5)
    • 417.5 (h)
  • Permission from parents to use pools
    • 417.5 (g) (4)
  • Supervision criteria for residential pool activities
    • 417.8 (n) (4)

Group Family Day Care Home: http://ocfs.ny.gov/main/childcare/regs/416_GFDC_regs.asp#s5

  • Pools and spas
    • 416.5 (g) (5)
    • 416.5 (h)
  • Permission from parents to use pools
    • 416.5 (g) (4)
  • Supervision criteria for residential pool activities
    • 416.8 (n) (4)

Effective June 1, 2015
Day Care Centers: http://ocfs.ny.gov/main/childcare/regs/418-1_CDCC_regs.asp

  • Pools and spas
    • 418.5(g)  (2)
  • Aquatic activities
    • 418.5(g) (1) (a) (b)  
  • Field trips
    • 418.5 (j)

Effective June 1, 2015
School-Age Child Care: http://ocfs.ny.gov/main/childcare/regs/414_SACC_regs.asp

  • Pools and spas

414.5 (g) (2)

  • Aquatic activities
    • 414.5 (g) (1) (a) (b)
  • Field trips
    • 414.5 (j)

9 Required training topic areas

All child care staff/employees/caregivers and volunteers with potential for regular and substantial contact with children must complete a total of 30 hours of training every two (2) years.

Such training must address the following topics: 

(1) principles of childhood development, focusing on the developmental stages of the
age groups for which the program provides care;

Principles of childhood development include such things as meeting the physical, social and developmental needs of children, including those with special needs; behavior management and discipline; promoting play and physical activity; individual development variation and learning styles; infant and toddler brain development and cross-cultural skills and knowledge.

(2) nutrition and health needs of infants and children;

Nutrition and health needs of infants and children include such things as healthy menu planning, obesity prevention, benefits of and how to encourage breastfeeding for mothers returning to work, training in infectious diseases, Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation (CPR), first aid, health and safety practices, preventive techniques in sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS), medication administration training.

(3) child day care program development;

Child day care program development topics include such things as the benefits of continuity of care practices, staff supervision and coaching, program variety and activity; infant, toddler, preschool, and school-age quality programming, promoting children's language development and social and emotional skills, and establishing nurturing, stimulating environments; rest time policies and procedures, including meeting the needs of children who do not nap; hand washing; meeting the program needs of mixed age groups in family day care and group family day care homes.

(4) safety and security procedures;

Safety and security procedures include such things as communication between parents and caregivers, emergency preparedness and response practices and procedures, fire safety, pool and water sports safety, playground safety, supervising daily activities and family engagement techniques.

(5) business record maintenance and management;

Business record maintenance and management includes such things as training in New York State and federal requirements as a business owner and employer, child day care record keeping and documentation requirements, time maintenance, organizational skills, scheduling and coverage, staff supervision and coaching.

(6) child abuse and maltreatment identification and prevention;

Child abuse and maltreatment identification and prevention includes such things as reporting protocol; how to make a report to the state central register; documenting incidents and daily health checks; child abuse policy/procedure including safety plan.

(7) statutes and regulations pertaining to child day care;

(8) statutes and regulations pertaining to child abuse and maltreatment;

Statutes and regulations pertaining to child abuse and maltreatment includes such things as Mandated Reporter training; responsibilities of a mandated reporter.

(9) education and information on the identification, diagnosis and prevention
of shaken baby syndrome.

This topic is not required for school-age program staff; however, credit will be given if taken.

For more specific information on these training topics and your requirements, contact your licensor or registrar.

Types of training available

There are essentially two (2) categories of training that will be accepted as meeting the regulatory requirements: live stand-up training and online training.

Live Stand-Up Training Online Training

Classroom Training

These are trainings that you attend in front of a live person who gives you credit for participating in the training once you have completed it. Classroom training can take several forms, including but not limited to: in-service trainings by an ASPIRE credentialed trainer or those who meet the standard set forth in policy, workshops held at conferences, and college and university courses.

If the training is conducted by a non-ASPIRE approved trainer, training credit will be counted, but will NOT be eligible for Educational Incentive Program, EIP.

Distance Learning

Distance learning is an alternative way to obtain training that many people find beneficial. The New York State Office of Children and Family Services issued a policy on how distance learning courses can be used to satisfy OCFS training requirements. Distance learning courses that are non-credit bearing and approved by OCFS may be used to satisfy OCFS childcare provider training requirements. There may be a fee for these courses. However, approved courses may quality for Educational Incentive Program (EIP) funding.

Go to OCFS approved distance learning courses to choose courses that are right for you. Additional distance learning courses and organizations will be added to the site as determinations are made.

Conferences and Workshops

Examples of organizations that host annual conferences include, but are not limited to:

The Early Childhood Education and Training Program (ECETP) e-Learning Courses

OCFS funds the ECETP catalog of online trainings, called e-Learning, which are accessible to all child day care programs in New York State at no cost to them. They are available online seven (7) days a week, 24 hours a day, and offer a 30-day window of completion.

College/University Courses

The Early Childhood.org website contains a page where child day care programs can find out information on degree programs related to early care and education available at colleges and universities in New York State.

Videoconference Training

ECETP Videoconference Trainings are award-winning, interactive videoconferences offered at different sites across the state. They cover a wide range of topics at no cost to the child day care program, offer providers opportunities to engage in on-site activities and communicate with the panel of live content experts through faxed or phoned-in questions, and count toward your training requirements.

In-service Training

For convenience, trainers are sometimes brought into child care programs to train staff on a specific topic(s).

  • If conducted by an approved ASPIRE trainer, training credit will be counted and could be eligible for Educational Incentive Program (EIP). If the training is conducted by a non-ASPIRE approved trainer, training credit will be counted, but will NOT be eligible for EIP.

Where can I take training?

You have many options for finding training. You can find educational activities and meet your training requirements through:

Mandated Reporter training

WHO is considered a Mandated Reporter?

New York State law recognizes certain professionals, such as child day care workers, as holding the important role of Mandated Reporter of child abuse or maltreatment. These professionals can be held liable by both the civil and criminal legal systems for intentionally failing to make a report of suspected abuse or maltreatment. Visit the Child Protective Services Frequently Asked Questions Page for a full listing of professionals who are considered Mandated Reporters.

WHAT are my responsibilities as a Mandated Reporter?

All child day care workers are Mandated Reporters. As a Mandated Reporter you are required by law to report suspected child abuse or maltreatment to the New York Statewide Central Register of Child Abuse and Maltreatment (SCR) immediately. Reports can be made at any time of the day and on any day of the week, by telephone at 1-800-342-3720. Click here for more information about making a call to the SCR. If you are a Mandated Reporter you can use the Mandated Reporter-specific line: (800) 635-1522

WHERE can I get Mandated Reporter training?

Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) and First Aid Training

WHAT are Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) and First Aid?

First Aid is help given to a sick or injured person until full medical treatment is available. By knowing what to do, and what not to do, in a variety of situations you can help keep a person's injuries from becoming worse.

Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) is an emergency procedure for manually preserving brain function until further measures can be provided to restore spontaneous blood circulation and breathing in a person who is in cardiac arrest. By being prepared to perform CPR, and performing it in a timely fashion, you can save a life.

WHO is required to take CPR and First Aid Training?

All child day care programs must have at least one (1) staff person, who holds a valid certificate in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and First Aid, on the premises of the child care program during the program's operating hours.

CPR and First Aid certificates must be appropriate to the ages of the children in care.

The staff person(s) who holds the valid certification in CPR and First Aid must have their certification on file and available for review during their working hours at the program.

A limited number of training slots in CPR and First Aid are available at no cost to child day care staff and caregivers.

WHERE can I get First Aid and CPR Training?

The OCFS contract with the National Safety Council to provide First Aid/CPR training opportunities to child day care employees is ending December 31, 2015.  Despite the fact that OCFS is no longer contracting with this organization, the National Safety Council training in First Aid and CPR will continue to be accepted as meeting the regulatory requirement.

As of January 1, 2016, OCFS will no longer provide training slots for First Aid/CPR through a contracted training vendor.  Employees and caregivers seeking to take CPR and First Aid training must arrange for certification classes on their own. Educational Incentive Program (EIP) funding will continue to be available for those who are eligible and choose training organizations in the ASPIRE registry.

There are other qualified agencies that offer CPR and First Aid training. Check for resources in your community.

How much does training cost?

The cost of training varies from one organization to another. Some training activities are free of charge while others may cost thousands of dollars. It is your responsibility to research what's available, find out how much training will cost and arrange for payment. OCFS sponsors several training activities that are available at no cost, such as:

How can I pay for training?

Educational Incentive Program (EIP)

The Educational Incentive Program is an OCFS scholarship program which helps staff and caregivers pay for approved training and educational activities with the intent to build provider knowledge, skills and competencies and improve the quality of child care. To be eligible for EIP, you must be caring for children in a program licensed or registered by the New York State Office of Children and Family Services (NYS OCFS) or the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (NYC DOHMH).

Eligibility is based on your employment, level of income, and the course or training you choose.

  • Employment Requirement
    Employment verification is required with each application:

    Who IS eligible to apply? Who is NOT eligible to apply? Other conditions
    • A registered family day care home provider or assistant(s)
    • A licensed group family day care home provider or assistant(s)
    • Child care employees in a registered school-age program
    • Child care employees in a licensed child care center
    • Volunteers are NOT eligible for an EIP scholarship
    • Substitutes for a family day care home
    • Substitutes for a group family day care home
    • Adjunct child care staff, consultants and staff not counted in the adult/child ratio
    • Legally exempt programs
    • No Permit Required (NPR) programs
    • Must be a US citizen, permanent resident or resident alien authorized to work in the US
    • Must be a paid employee currently caring for children as part of the adult/child ratio requirement in a child day care program licensed or registered by NYS OCFS or NYC DOHMH
  • Income Requirement
    Scholarship amounts are determined using your household size and household income as reported on your most recent IRS Form 1040. Your household income must fall within an income range. EIP reserves the right to seek additional verification that the income documentation submitted is accurate and authentic. If you are applying for a Child Development Associate (CDA) credential fee, your income will not be used as a factor to determine eligibility.
  • Course Requirement

    EIP pays for: EIP does NOT pay for: Notes of Interest
    • The same training more than once in a single year
    • Books and/or training materials
    • Elective student fees, room or board
    • Test fees and examination preparation
    • EIP scholarships will be awarded until funding is depleted or the scholarship year ends, whichever comes first
    • EIP reserves the right to prioritize scholarship awards based on course type
    • Child day care providers may apply for multiple trainings per year until they reach their award maximum
    • EIP applicants are responsible for any tuition and costs not covered by EIP

EIP scholarships will only be issued for training activities occurring in the current calendar year and if your trainer is Credentialed as a NYS Early Learning Trainer, Verified Trainer or a Content Specialist approved in the ASPIRE system. Scholarship applications for training taken with trainers not listed as Credentialed, Verified or Content Specialist will be denied. Get more information on the NYS Early Learning Credentialed Trainers.

EIP has two (2) separate application submission periods intended to provide a balanced allocation of funds for the entire EIP scholarship year. The course start and end dates written on your application must match the actual training dates you attend training and must fall within the correct submission period.

Applicants must provide a completed application by the appropriate deadline to be reviewed for scholarship.

Rebate Programs:

Some training organizations offer rebate programs to help you offset the cost of the training. Consult with the individual organization you are using to see if they have any rebate programs available, what the eligibility requirements are, and what you need to do to participate in them.

Two (2) programs that offer rebate programs are:

What is needed to verify my training credits?

You need to keep accurate records of the trainings you attend, including completion certificates, grade reports or transcripts. Upon request from OCFS the program must be able to show proof of compliance with the 30 hours of training needed in a two year period covering the required topics. Proof must be available for review during inspection. OCFS has developed two (2) forms to help you track your program and your individual hours. These forms are on the OCFS website. Keep all your training documents; the licensor will ask to see the originals. Training documents may not be altered. Always keep original documents in your file.

If you have additional questions concerning which types of training activities can count toward your 30 hour requirement, contact your licensor or registrar.

Finding training in other languages

If you are looking for Health and Safety training or Medication Administration Training (MAT) in a language other than English you can visit the "Locate a Trainer in Your Area" section of the PDP website.

 

What is ASPIRE?

ASPIRE is New York State's registry and statewide training calendar for early childhood and school-age professionals developed by New York Works for Children, the State's integrated professional development system for the early childhood and school-age workforce. Teachers, providers, directors, trainers and anyone who works with children can use ASPIRE to keep track of important information about their career, including education, employment history and other professional development. Additionally, it provides access to training records and qualifications of providers - making it a valuable tool for OCFS licensing staff.

What are credential programs?

Credentials are academic degrees, licenses or certificates awarded to individuals who successfully complete state or national requirements to enter specialized roles in the early childhood profession.

There are many programs that offer credentials that have been established to improve the competencies of people working with children and their families. Some include:

  • Child Development Associate Credential is the most widely recognized credential in early childhood education and is a key stepping stone on the path of career advancement in early childhood education. This credential is based on a core set of comptency standards, which guide early care professionals as they work toward becoming qualified teachers of young children.
  • Children's Program Administrator Credential for New York State is designed to provide for and be recognized as a standard by which to measure program management, fiscal management, and the leadership abilities of early childhood and school-age administrators.
  • Family Child Care Credential is designed to formally recognize those practitioners who demonstrate their competence, knowledge and professional practice in the areas of professional family day care homes, child development, healthy home learning environments and business practices.
  • Family Development Credential is a program that prepares frontline workers with skills necessary to provide empowerment-based assistance to families so that they might set and obtain goals of healthy self-reliance.
  • Infant and Toddler Care and Education Credential formally recognizes the value and specialized knowledge, skills and attitudes necessary for practitioners who work with infants and toddlers.
  • School-Age Child Care Credential is designed to promote quality services to children and families by providing specific standards, training and evaluation of school-age staff members and providers.

Information for Trainers

Early Learning Trainer Credential

The New York State Association for the Education of Young Children (NYSAEYC) has developed a trainer approval process that verifies the education and qualifications of trainers who provide professional development to early learning providers in the state. Approved trainers have had their qualifications verified by NYSAEYC through the NYS Early Learning Trainer Credential program.

Approved trainer types:

  • ASPIRE-Registered Trainers have an active ASPIRE profile and have registered with ASPIRE as a trainer. ASPIRE has verified their education, but they do not necessarily meet a specific level of education. They may or may not have experience working directly with children and families. They may or may not have experience providing professional development to early childhood professionals.
  • Verified Trainers have an active ASPIRE profile and have registered with ASPIRE as a trainer. ASPIRE has verified their education, but they do not necessarily meet a specific level of education. They may or may not have experience working directly with children and families. They may or may not have experience providing professional development to early childhood professionals. ASPIRE has verified that these trainers have at least one (1) endorsement to provide a specific curriculum or have been trained to reliability on at least one (1) assessment tool. Verified trainers must complete an approved train-the-trainer course, receive a certificate or letter verifying that they hold a valid, current endorsement, and submit that documentation to ASPIRE for verification.
  • Credentialed Trainers have been awarded the New York State Early Learning Trainer Credential by the New York State Association for the Education of Young Children (NYSAEYC). Their experience and education have been verified to be specific to early childhood education and/or school-age care. Credentialed trainers have active ASPIRE Professional Profiles and they very often also possess additional endorsements to deliver specific curricula and/or use specific assessment tools. There are three (3) levels of Credentialed Trainers. The levels are based largely on education level and coursework related to early childhood education. All Credentialed Trainers have a minimum of an Associate's degree, experience working in early childhood education, and experience delivering professional development.
  • Content Specialist Trainers have education and experience in a field other than early childhood education, but offer non-credit bearing group training in their area of expertise to early childhood professionals in areas such as fine/performing arts, social work, law, business and accounting, health and nutrition, and safety and security. They have an active ASPIRE profile, have registered with ASPIRE as a trainer, and have been issued the Content Specialist endorsement by the New York State Association for the Education of Young Children (NYSAEYC). ASPIRE has verified their education, but they do not necessarily meet a specific level of education. They may or may not have experience working directly with children and families, but they do have experience delivering professional development to early childhood professionals.

Early childhood trainers, coaches and consultants are encouraged to join ASPIRE, New York State's workforce registry and statewide training calendar for early childhood and school-age professionals.

Visit NYS Early Learning Training Source to find a trainer.

For more information about what the Early Learning Trainer Credential means to child day care providers, visit the OCFS website to read the January 2013 Dear Provider Letter.

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