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What is involved in the CDA renewal process?

In the previous article, we discussed the amount of time your Child Development Associate (CDA) Credential™ lasts and the renewal criteria. The purpose of the CDA renewal is to ensure that early childhood educators are maintaining current knowledge and skills in their work with young children and families. Now we will describe the steps in the renewal process itself. Keep in mind that before taking these steps, you must fulfill the renewal criteria, which we detailed in the last article. 

The renewal process involves three steps:

  • Purchase a Renewal Packet: The Renewal Packet applies to all four types of credentials — Center-based Preschool; Center-based Infant/Toddler; Family Child Care; and Home Visitor. A Renewal Packet may be purchased online from the Council
  • Gather required documentation as outlined above in the five renewal criteria. Specific instructions are provided in the Renewal Packet, including information relative to identifying an early childhood education professional to prepare the recommendation form.
  • Apply for the CDA Renewal: if you meet all requirements, you are ready to fill out and submit your CDA Renewal Application. The fastest and easiest way to renew your CDA Credential is to apply online. You may submit your Renewal Application no sooner than six months before your credential expiration date. Note: You must renew your credential before it expires. Your credential will expire 3-years from the date of award.

Upon receipt of the application and supporting documents, Council staff will review the materials for completeness. If all materials are in order, the Council will award the CDA Renewal Credential. If the materials are incomplete, the Council will notify the Renewal Candidate who will be given the opportunity to resolve the problem within a specified time period.

If you choose to apply by mail, send your completed Renewal Application along with all required documentation to:

Council for Professional Recognition
2460 16th St. NW
Washington, DC 20009-3547

Remember these tips and tools:

  • The Council will send you an email reminder when it is time to renew your CDA credential. Please make sure the Council always has your current contact information on file.
  • Since you may submit your Renewal Application no sooner than six months before your credential expiration date, make sure to prepare in advance and be ready to submit a complete application with supporting documents when your renewal window opens.
  • Do not mail your Renewal Application to the Council sooner than six months before your credential expiration date.

ProSolutions Training offers continuing education for working professionals in the fields of early care and education and social services. We offer a CDA Course (120 hours) and a CDA Renewal Course (45 hours) to meet the needs of early care and education professionals seeking the CDA Credential.