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Certification Renewal Q&A

Updated February 4, 2014

Does Early Educator Certification (EEC) expire?

Yes, all certifications have an expiration date. Your certification is valid for three or five years based on your EEC level. Your individual expiration date can be found on your certificate and card.

The EEC team encourages you to apply at least four months prior to the expiration date to guarantee renewal before your certificate expires.

What education or continuing education is required for renewal?

Updated 7/1/2013

To maintain EEC, individuals certified on the Early Care and Education Professional Scale must continue their professional development by completing three semester hours or six Continuing Education Units (CEUs) or a combination of the two within their certification validity period.

Those certified on the School Age Professional Scale must complete two semester hours or three Continuing Education Units (CEUs) or a combination of the two within their certification validity period.

  • All courses in general education, school age or early childhood will count for renewal for those who have at least six semester hours focused on the age group for which they are currently certified.
  • Early Educators certified at level 4 or 8 with NO focused coursework must take semester hours focused on the age group for which they are currently certified. CEUS will not be accepted for renewal.
  • Early Educators assessed with one to five hours of focused coursework within their certification level may take CEUs, but if they choose to take semester hours to meet their renewal requirements, they must take semester hours focused on the age group for which they are currently certified.
  • Professionals certified with a minimum of a Bachelor’s Degree and 12 semester hours focused on the age group for which they are currently certified may receive credit for teaching a CEU session for a minimum of .5 CEUs (5 contact hours) that meet renewal requirements.  Each CEU session may be counted toward renewal only once per validity period.
  • Professionals certified at levels 12 or 13 may also receive credit for teaching formal coursework  or CEUs that meets renewal requirements.  The same course may receive credit toward renewal only once per validity period.
  • CEU sessions must be worth at least .5 CEUs (5 contact hours) to count toward renewal. 

Do CEUs count for DCDEE in-service training hours?

CEUs may be counted as in-service training hours for facility licensure purposes if the following are true:

Keep a copy of your CEU document in your files for regulatory consultant use.

How do I determine how many training hours a CEU counts for? 

  • 1.0 (one) CEU counts for 10 contact hours of training credit.
  • .5 CEU counts for 5 hours of training credit.

Is there any financial support for college credits?

Funding for renewal credits is available through T.E.A.C.H. Quick Start/Final Step scholarship. Click here to learn more.

Is there any financial support for taking continuing education units?

Funding for renewal continuing education units from NC community college grant foundations available by individual campus.

The Institute and its partners offer free and reduced cost CEUs. Check the CEU Events Calendar for more details.

How do I document my continued education?

Submit an official transcript for college courses or include the following for CEUs:

  • date(s) of session
  • session name
  • location(s) where session(s) are held
  • number of CEUs received
  • CEU granting body (public school, regionally accredited (community college or university or IACET approved body)
How do I document that I taught formal coursework to meet my EEC renewal requirements?
 
To meet renewal requirements through teaching formal coursework, individuals should submit a letter from the school indicating the name of a least one 3 semester hour course that was taught during the individual’s validity period.  The course must be in general education, school age or early childhood.  The letter can be from the registrar, the dean of the college or HR.  
 
How do I document that I taught CEUs to meet my EEC renewal requirements?
 
To meet renewal by teaching CEUs, individuals should submit a copy of a sample certificate for each CEU training they provided along with a copy of the training roster for each session.  Each CEU session may be counted toward renewal only once per validity period and must fall under one of the nine topic areas.  CEUs must also be a minimum of .5 CEUs each.  A total of 6 CEUs is required to meet renewal, but can be a  combination of CEUs taught and taken.  

 

Finding CEUs

CEUs are available across the state as options for EEC renewal.
Quick Notes
  • Adult learning research tells us that adults learn and transfer knowledge and skills attained when they have time to learn, use what they have learned and reflect on what they have learned to inform practice. CEUs are designed to address adult learner needs and improve early care and school age settings.
  • Early childhood research tells us that the education of the teacher impacts the quality of child care settings — the more education the teacher has, the better the quality of child care.
  • CEUs are used by most professions as a source of ongoing training.
  • Public school teachers often take CEUs in one-hour increments. Why? Because they are building their knowledge upon four-years of college education. The majority of teachers working with young children do not yet hold a college degree, requiring that more in-depth training be provided.

Learn more about CEUs by visiting the Institute’s Continuing Education Library.

Why are 5 hour CEUs (.5 CEUs) required?

CEUs of 5 hours or more with content approved by an EEC recognized body may be used to meet EEC renewal requirements. CEUs are used by many professions as a source of ongoing training. Public school teachers who have a bachelor’s degree may take 1 hour CEU sessions that build up on their 4-year college education. The vast majority of the child care field does not yet hold a college degree, requiring that more in-depth training be provided.

What college credit courses count as birth to five or schoolage coursework?

Click here for the list of current NC Community College education courses and how they are counted for Early Educator Certification.

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