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A Daycare Assistant Teacher is an employee who assists lead teachers in child daycare environments. They work to support teachers and students by assisting in the care, supervision and education of children. They may also be referred to as Teacher Aides, Education Assistants, Instructional Aides, Paraprofessionals or Paraeducators in some workplace settings.
Daycare Assistant Teachers work with or under the supervision of licensed teachers to perform the following general duties:
Daycare Assistant Teachers typically work in daycare centers, child care facilities or preschools. These may be independent, stand-alone child care or preschool businesses, child care or preschool programs. They tend to be run by community centers, churches or non-profit organizations. Daycare/preschool services provided by schools or child care centers provided by businesses, corporations or government agencies benefit their employees and are necessary for working families.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) Occupational Outlook Handbook, job prospects for Daycare Assistant Teachers are expected to be favorable in the coming years. The agency projects a job growth rate of 8 percent for Assistant Teachers between 2016 and 2026, a rate that is about as fast as the average for all occupations and slightly faster than the 7 percent rate of expected job growth for child care workers in general. BLS cites increased child enrollment as a factor in that expected rate of employment growth, as well as state and federal funding for early childhood education programs. Continuing demand for childcare services from working parents is also expected to contribute to job growth in this area. An increasing focus on the importance of early education in promoting intellectual, emotional and social development in children is also a factor.
While this information can give people an idea of the career potential of specific occupations, it is important to note that job market data from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Handbook is only intended to provide insight on occupational opportunities. It is not to be construed as a guarantee of salary or job title. Neither BLS nor Bryant & Stratton College can guarantee employment in this or any other occupational field.
To qualify for a Daycare Assistant Teacher position, you will need a high-school diploma or equivalent, and in most cases, some college coursework in early childhood development. Earning an Early Childhood Care & Development Diploma with Bryant & Stratton College is a great option for getting started in this field. This diploma program can be completed within 3 terms or 1 year and fulfills the 120-hour educational requirement for the National Child Development Associate (CDA) Credential awarded through the Council for Professional Recognition – the most widely recognized credential in the Early Childhood Education field. Students are qualified to apply for this credential upon graduation.
Earning Bryant & Stratton's Early Childhood Care & Development diploma provides you with the educational background you need to pursue becoming a Daycare Assistant Teacher. Completing this diploma program can also help prepare you to work with children in a variety of other settings, including child development programs, early intervention programs, preschools and recreation programs.
Additional training and requirements to become a Daycare Assistant Teacher may include state certification or licensing, and the process and standards for earning those credentials varies between states. Many states and employers require that Daycare Assistant Teachers receive additional training in child abuse detection and prevention, health and first aid, cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and/or fire safety. In some states or employment settings, Daycare Assistant Teachers may be required to hold a food handler's license or certificate.
Applicants for these positions generally must undergo a criminal background check to qualify for employment. Typically, these background checks screen for any offense or conviction that involves child abuse or neglect, violence, and/or alcohol and drug abuse. In some states, candidates for Daycare Teacher Assistant jobs will be required to undergo a fingerprint check via the FBI database as part of the background check process.
Some employers may require that candidates for Daycare Assistant Teacher positions hold professional certifications, such as the CDA credential, to be eligible for employment. Most employers prefer to hire candidates with some work experience in their field. Students who complete Bryant & Stratton's Early Childhood Care & Development diploma program may be able to meet that work experience requirement via the program's early childhood practice experience, which may be completed within a live childcare environment.
For more insights into starting a career as a Daycare Assistant Teacher or in another position within the early childhood education field, please visit the Career Services section of the Bryant & Stratton College blog. Exploring that blog and our website can provide you with access to a lot of valuable tips and information that can yield further insights into building your best career path in the early childhood education field, as well as a wide variety of other occupational fields that may spark your interest.