By Dave Parker
1-Stop Child Care Services
Started as a better way to keep track of child care workers’ training, the Oklahoma Professional Development Registry is still not being used properly by many child care centers.
Proper use could make directors’ jobs easier and even help retain workers. I am going to give you some tips to make the Registry work for you.
The Registry was started partially to alleviate a perennial problem: teachers leaving or getting fired at their one-year anniversaries.
Child Care Licensing requires teachers to have 20 hours of training each year. If they don’t have 20 hours, it is a non-compliance. Oftentimes, teachers would not have enough training, so as their one-year anniversaries approached they would quit and move to other centers. Or, the director would fire them.
With the Registry, teachers’ training goes with them from center to center. So it was supposed to keep teachers from center-hopping.
My suggestions should help that come to pass.
Sign them up immediately
Centers aren’t required to have employees on the Registry until they have been employed a year, so as the anniversary approaches there is a rush to get all the proof of education in. You avoid that stress by putting them on the Registry when they start.
Don’t pay the $10 yet
You can sign the employees up without paying the $10 registration fee. So if the employee leaves after a couple of days, you will not have paid yet.
Safe Sleep Training
Before teachers work with infants, they must have Safe Sleep Training. So sign them up now.
Teachers, assistant directors and directors must have CPR/First Aid certification within 90 days of employment. Sign them up for a class now. (Visit 1StopCCS.com for classes.)
Within 90 days of employment, all teachers must complete Entry Level Child Care Training (ELCCT). Sign them up now and keep up with their progress.
Pay the fee
Once the teachers complete ELCCT—which is 20 hours—finish their Registry application and pay the $10. Once approved, their Professional Development Ladder registrations are good for a year.
For teachers who have degrees, turn their official transcripts in to the Registry office, at 1801 N. Moore Avenue, Moore 73160. Make sure the teachers’ Registry ID numbers are on the envelopes with their transcripts. If you can drop them off in person, that is ideal. If you can’t deliver them in person, you must mail them.
If teachers are trained by registered trainers, ensure the trainers have the teachers’ Registry ID numbers, so the training can be entered electronically by the trainer. For paper certificates, ensure the Registry ID number is written on each piece of paper. Then, scan the documents and email them to firstname.lastname@example.org. Mailed or FAXed documents can be misplaced; with email you have a record of the documents you sent.
During the year, keep track of your employees’ training, so it doesn’t creep up on you all at once.
By doing all of these things, you will make the Registry work for you. Your stress level will go down, and renewal will be much easier for your employees. Everyone will be much happier, and happy employees stay longer than unhappy ones.