Home > Certification, Endorsements, & Licensure > EEC Forms & Overview

Why Get Certified

Use it to Apply for Employment

Your EEC certificate or card provides you and employers with a point-of-hire document. Note employers may require their staff to hold or become and maintain their Early Educator Certification.

Use It for Facility License Education Points

EEC is a teacher education equivalency in DCDEE rule. That means an EEC level can be used by the regulatory consultant as a verified form of education documentation during site visits.  The DCDEE Workforce Unit can use the EEC level for individuals applying to be a Lead Teacher, Teacher, Family Child Care Home Provider and/or Program Coordinator.  The updated Star Rating charts show how EEC can be used to calculate teacher education points for the positions above.

The EEC Unit shares EEC levels for all certified early educators with DCDEE each month so you do not need to send transcripts to DCDEE too. 

Use It to Save Time & Money Purchasing & Sharing Transcripts

One stamp, many uses, cost savings! Once an early educator is certified, she/he need only to submit updated transcripts for new college courses and degrees to EEC to have their education level updated by EEC, WAGE$ and DCDEE.

  • DCDEE may use your EEC level for facility licensure purposes to assess for education requirements.  Transcripts do not need to be sent to DCDEE once you are certified. Contact the EEC office or DCDEE Workforce Unit (919-662-4499) for more information.
  • Child Care WAGE$® Project can use an EEC level to award salary supplements, if the county where the early educator is employed participates in WAGE$.
  • T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® (T.E.A.C.H.) Project, upon request by certified early educators, can also use a certification level and education updates for scholarship purposes.
  • EEC can use the certified early educator’s transcripts to keep your certification up to date.

Get Professional Recognition

Certified early educators receive professional recognition with a frame-ready certificate and wallet-sized card with their certification level.  This helps parents, employers, friends, neighbors and more understand the importance of the work you do and the education you have earned.

Access Benefits & Discounted Goods & Services

Through EEC Rewards & Benefits, certified early educators can access free training offered by the Institute. You can save on early learning supplies and equipment, movie tickets, phones, food, technology and more!  You can access low-cost banking services, insurance options and work-life resources!  All are available online with your EEC ID number here.

Early Educator Certification (EEC) is About You

“I am so proud to have this certification and plan to take additional courses.”  -Group Leader

Early Educator Certification provides…

  • You with a certificate to demonstrate your certification level.
  • You with access discounts on goods and services for certified Early Educators.
  • Our field with professional recognition like other professions.
  • Employers with point of hire documentation, reducing their costs and increasing the time they can spend operating their business and working with families, teachers and children.
  • Families with a tool to tell them about the education of who is working with their child.
  • Programs with a marketing strategy for advertising that their program is staffed with with certified teachers.

How to Apply

The simple, fee-based EEC Application process includes the submission of an application and official transcripts. EEC does not require a test or specific college course.

Step 1: Choose which scale you want to be certified (or apply for both)

Step 2: Order your official transcripts if you have completed college coursework.

Step 3: Complete the application. Doublecheck your email address as this is where you will receive application information and updates.

Step 4: Attach the fee to your application and send to the Institute.

Step 5: Watch for an email with your EEC ID so you can begin using EEC Rewards.

Education earned is the basis for EEC. To be counted for EEC, coursework must have been taken at a regionally accredited college or university. All public community colleges and universities in North Carolina are regionally accredited. For a list of regionally accredited college and university programs go to the Council for Higher Education Accreditation.

Fact Sheets



Application & Forms

  • EEC Application
  • EEC Request Form
  • EEC Update Form
  • EEC Internet Transcript Permission Form- The EEC Internet Permission Form (IPF) allows EEC staff to download your transcript using your login from a college or university website, if available. The IPF does not give us permission to request an official transcript from your college or university for you. Download the form and complete it with your login information and attach it to your EEC application.


Renewal Information

Renewal is required every three or five years, based on an individual’s education.  Learn more about EEC Renewal here.


For more information about EEC contact staff at info@ncicdp.org or call 919-942-7442.


Be Part of a Certified Profession

Number of Certified Early Educators in North Carolina…


© 2010 NC Institute for Child Development Professionals, PO Box 959, Chapel Hill, NC 27514 dtorrence@ncicdp.org