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Professional development is essential for childcare providers in improving the care that they offer to children, and is a requirement for DCFS licenses, achieving and maintaining Circles of Quality and accreditation. At Community Child Care Connection, we help providers further their education and development with local training events and professional development programs.

You may also visit the Illinois’ Gateways website where providers can search for trainings in our area as well as areas surrounding the counties that we serve on a Statewide Training Calendar.

To access online trainings required for Illinois DCFS Licensing,  trainings required to apply for ExceleRate, and additional Gateways to Opportunity Trainings (i.e. ECE Credential Level 1, We Choose Health, Emergency Preparedness for Child Care, etc.) please visit


Community Child Care Connection is pleased to partner with the Child Care Education Institute to offer online professional development courses that meet DCFS licensing training requirements. Online training opportunities offered include one, two and five hour in service credit course. All courses offered have been reviewed by partnering CCR&R staff.

Professional development coursework is delivered through an online learning management system that provides user-friendly enrollment, easy access to courses, and a self-paced engaging online learning environment for students. Professionals can take courses from any computer with Internet access, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Certificates can be printed immediately upon completion of the training module.

* Individuals may complete up to five hours of workshops each year, free of charge. A small fee of $7.00 per credit hour is * charged for any additional workshops for which they register.

  • National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC)
    The purpose of the National Academy of Early Childhood (a division of NAEYC) is to improve the quality of care and education provided for young children in all types of preschools, kindergartens, child care centers and school-age child care programs. NAEYC Eligibility: Serve a minimum of 10 children within the age group birth to five in part or full day group programs and/or school-age children served before and/or after school with at least two adults present. In operation at least 1 year prior to accreditation. Licensed by appropriate state/local licensing agency. If license-exempt, demonstrate compliance with its own state standards for early childhood programs. Include the entire program that comes under the eligibility criteria in the self-study and validation process. The Accreditation Process: Self-Study Process: the program personnel and parents conduct a self-study to determine how well the program meets the criteria and complete needed improvements. Validation Visit: trained validators make an on-site visit to verify the accuracy of the program description. Accreditation Decision: a three-person commission considers the validated program description and makes a final accreditation decision. For more information about NAEYC, visit or call 1-800-424-2460.
  • National Accreditation Commission (NAC)
    The National Accreditation Commission for Early Care and Education Programs is a national accreditation program that was developed for early care and educational programs, and is used to promote professionalism and quality in child care. The process includes a self-study component, a validation visit and a review by the NAC commission for the final accreditation decision. For more information about NAC, visit or call 1-800-537-1118.
  • National Association for Family Child Care Accreditation (NAFCC)
    The National Association for Family Child Care has designed an accreditation system to help family child care providers set and reach quality improvement goals and to help parents and policymakers identify high quality care in a home setting. The accreditation is intended for providers who have demonstrated a commitment to reach beyond the minimum requirements of state licensing. NAFCC Eligibility: Offer care to 3 or more children in the home Primary caregiver 21 years of age or older High school diploma or equivalent 18 months experience as a family child care provider 90 hours of documented training The Accreditation Process: Self-Study Process: NAFCC will send a self-study packet (includes provider self-study workbook and standards guidebook). This packet should be used for assessment of the program in order to make quality improvements where needed. Observation Visit: after all quality improvements have been made, NAFCC will arrange for an on-site observation visit. For more information about NAFCC, visit or call (801) 886-2322.
  • National Early Childhood Program Accreditation (NECPA)
    Primarily for childcare centers, the NECPA system is a streamlined, user-friendly approach to accreditation. The NECPA accreditation process examines program areas such as professional development, work environment, outdoor environment, developmental program, parent and community involvement, and administration. It begins with a self-assessment and improvement plan which the center implements. A volunteer peer verifier then follows up with an on-site visit. The National Accreditation Council studies the results of the assessment, reviews the verification and grants accreditation. For more information, visit or call 1-800-505-9878.
  • National AfterSchool Association
    The National AfterSchool Association strives to be the leading voice of the after-school profession dedicated to the development, education, and care of children and youth during their out-of-school hours. For more information, visit or call 800-617-8242.
Prof Dev

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