Alphabet letter block in word CDA

CDA Programs


Applications for the Fall Cohort closed Friday, July 28, 2023

All applications submitted after this date will be put on a waiting list and will roll over to the next cohort.

Orientation for Directors and Candidates: Monday, August 28, 2023 OR Thursday, August 31, 2023

Cohort 12 First Session: Infant/Toddler – Tuesday, September 5, Toddler/PreK – Wednesday, September 6, 2023

Click Here to view the 2023-2024 Cohort 12 calendar

  Please email questions or concerns to

The Jefferson Parish Early Childhood Collaborative is excited to offer a CDA / Early Childhood Ancillary Certificate course.

This course is recommended for highly motivated lead teachers who are in need of their Early Childhood Ancillary Certificate.

The program includes

  • Classes will held from 12:00 pm to 3:00 pm via Zoom, as well as in person, at the Jefferson Parish Schools Administration Building, from 12:00pm-5:30pm, beginning late August 2023 through April 2024. Please view our tentative calendar here.
  • Eighty (80) hours of online modules through our partnership with Teachstone
  • Job-embedded coaching

What makes our program unique?

  • Partnered with Teachstone
  • Blended web-based modules with face-to-face instruction
  • Job-embedded coaching
  • Use of CLASS concepts and CLASS scores, as well as Teachstone coaching strategies to translate knowledge gained through coursework into classroom practices

Questions you may be asking yourself.

The Child Development Associate (CDA) Credentialâ„¢ is based on a core set of competency standards, which guide early care professionals as they work toward becoming qualified teachers of young children.

Teachers with a CDA credential have knowledge of how to put the CDA Competency Standards into practice and understanding of why those standards help children move with success from one developmental stage to another.

Put simply, teachers with a CDA know how to nurture the emotional, physical, intellectual, and social developmentof children.

Candidates who have gained admission to an Early Childhood Ancillary Certificate Program, and who meet the qualifying criteria for LA Pathways Scholarships, may apply for a scholarship totaling the approved amount of scholarship tuition. Therefore, CDA candidates who receive LA Pathways scholarships attend free of charge.

  • Advance your career
  • Meet LA Department of Education requirements for lead teachers in Type III centers
  • Reinforce your commitment to early childhood education
  • Provide parents with peace of mind
  • Learn more about CLASS and effective instructional interactions
  • Increase your confidence

  • At least 18 years of age
  • Have a high school diploma / GED
  • Work at a type III center
  • Must currently work part-time (at least 16 hours/week) or full-time in the early learning center as the lead teacher** (**Lead teachers will be prioritized for enrollment)
  • Have less than 12 college credit hours in early care and education
  • Applicants/recipients may not already hold a degree or certificate that qualifies the individual for the Early Childhood Ancillary Certificate

Important Reminders:

After January 1, 2018, coursework for the Child Development Associate (CDA) certificate, technical diploma and certificate of technical studies must be earned from a Louisiana Board of Elementary and Secondary Education (BESE) approved provider in order for an individual to be eligible for the Louisiana Early Childhood Ancillary Certificate.

Beginning July 2019all lead teachers working in publicly funded early learning centers must hold, at a minimum, a Louisiana Early Childhood Ancillary Certificate. For additional information about the Early Childhood Ancillary Certificate, click here.

More information on qualifying degrees can be found in the Early Childhood Ancillary Certificate FAQs

If you have any questions, please email or call Melissa Vegas at 504-383-1807.