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How do I get a Child Care Diploma?

By Sheri Cyprus
Updated Feb 20, 2024
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Earning a child care diploma involves obtaining the required education, credentials, experience and licensing needed in your location. If you have a child of your own or other responsibilities that take up a great deal of your time, you may want to earn your diploma online at home through Internet-based learning. Most child care diploma programs also require some hands-on, in-person experience caring for children in a day care setting.

Before even considering earning a child care diploma, it's a good idea to spend some time in a day care full of children. Even if you have a child of your own or have done babysitting for others, a child care situation with many children is different. The environment can be quite chaotic, especially in child day cares that have both infants and small children to look after. You can often count your volunteer child care experience toward earning your diploma if you do decide to pursue a career in child care.

Child care schools may be able to help place you in a day care, or you could work in a friend or relative's home child care business. If you're planning on opening your own home day care after earning your child care diploma and getting the required licensing, make sure to research exactly what you'll need before you complete your education requirements. This way, you can be prepared to put your child care diploma to immediate use once you've earned it.

To ensure you'll be learning the information you require from your child care diploma program, ask questions from the school's advisers before you enroll. Child care providers must usually meet strict health and safety requirements when caring for other children in their home on a licensed basis. Limits on the number and ages of children, plus licensing for either full-time or after-school care, may be required in your area.

In addition to child care studies, you'll have to learn the basics of child development and psychology to earn your diploma. It's a good idea to research schools and programs to find the best overall program for you. If your income situation requires it, you may be eligible for grants or loans to help you get your child care diploma. If loans are your only option, work out roughly what your repayment would be in relation to the income you'll be likely to earn after you receive your diploma and a child care job.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Discussion Comments
By whiteplane — On Mar 14, 2012

What are some of the best schools for getting a child are diploma? I have always wanted to go into this field, child care rather than education, and I want to prepare myself as best I can.

By truman12 — On Mar 14, 2012

So is child care studies and undergraduate degree you get from a four year university? I have honestly never heard of this degree before but I can totally understand why it exists. There is so much need for safe, reliable, affordable and quality child care that it was only a matter of time before people could dedicate their studies to the subject.

By ZsaZsa56 — On Mar 13, 2012

I think that working effectively with children requires both education and intuition. I have seen people that have gone through child care school that are frankly really bad with children. They know how to do CPR and their minds are filled with stuff about childhood development but they could not play blocks or paddy cake to save their lives.

What I mean to say is that if you do not already love children and feel like you have some kind of connection to them getting a child care diploma will not change that.

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