Caring for Our Children (CFOC)

Chapter 1: Staffing

1.4 Professional Development/Training

1.4.2 Orientation Training Initial Orientation of All Staff

All new full-time staff, part-time staff and substitutes should be oriented to the policies listed in Standard and any other aspects of their role. The topics covered and the dates of orientation training should be documented. Caregivers/teachers should also receive continuing education each year, as specified in Continuing Education, Standard through Standard
Orientation ensures that all staff members receive specific and basic training for the work they will be doing and are informed about their new responsibilities. Because of frequent staff turnover, directors should institute orientation programs on a regular basis (1).

Orientation and ongoing training are especially important for aides and assistant teachers, for whom pre-service educational requirements are limited. Entry into the field at the level of aide or assistant teacher should be attractive and facilitated so that capable members of the families and cultural groups of the children in care can enter the field. Training ensures that staff members are challenged and stimulated, have access to current knowledge (2), and have access to education that will qualify them for new roles.

Use of videos and other passive methods of training should be supplemented by interactive training approaches that help verify content of training has been learned (3).

Health training for child care staff protects the children in care, staff, and the families of the children enrolled. Infectious disease control in child care helps prevent spread of infectious disease in the community. Outbreaks of infectious diseases and intestinal parasites in young children in child care have been shown to be associated with community outbreaks (4).

Child care health consultants can be an excellent resource for providing health and safety orientation or referrals to resources for such training.

Many states have pre-service education and experience qualifications for caregivers/teachers by role and function. Offering a career ladder and utilizing employee incentives such as Teacher Education and Compensation Helps (TEACH) will attract individuals into the child care field, where labor is in short supply. Colleges, accrediting bodies, and state licensing agencies should examine teacher preparation guidelines and substantially increase the health content of early childhood professional preparation.

Child care staff members are important figures in the lives of the young children in their care and in the well-being of families and the community. Child care staff training should include new developments in children’s health. For example; a new training program could discuss up-to-date information on the prevention of obesity and its impact on early onset of chronic diseases.

Center, Early Head Start, Head Start, Large Family Child Care Home, Small Family Child Care Home
RELATED STANDARDS Continuing Education for Directors and Caregivers/Teachers in Centers and Large Family Child Care Homes Continuing Education for Small Family Child Care Home Caregivers/Teachers Training of Staff Who Handle Food Child Abuse and Neglect Education Training on Occupational Risk Related to Handling Body Fluids Education of Center Staff Training Time and Professional Development Leave Payment for Continuing Education Child Care Health Consultants Content of Policies Training Record
  1. Fiene, R. 2002. 13 indicators of quality child care: Research update. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation.
  2. Moon R. Y., R. P. Oden. 2003. Back to sleep: Can we influence child care providers? Pediatrics 112:878-82.
  3. National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC). 2008. Leadership and management: A guide to the NAEYC early childhood program standards and related accreditation criteria. Washington, DC: NAEYC.

  4. Crowley, A. A. 1990. Health services in child day-care centers: A survey. J Pediatr Health Care 4:252-59.