Professional Development

The education and experience of child care providers directly affect the quality of a child care program. At the Department of Children’s Services, we strive to offer a variety of professional development opportunities and support services to our provider community as well as links to other community resources.


Professional Development Training Calendar:
The Department’s Training Calendar offers a wide range of workshops in child development, curriculum planning, developmentally appropriate practices, administrative procedure, health and safety, inclusion and more.
(click here for our training calendar)


Targeted Training Series:
Our Quality Initiatives staff work together to offer a variety of Division of Family Development supported training series throughout the year. These modules focus on specific areas of child development, your program and family support.
Click on a series below for additional information and descriptions:

The Growing Brain
The greatest rate of brain growth and development occurs during the first few years of life.  This rapid development takes place during the same time a child is making critical connections with his or her outside world.  This also happens to be the same time that you, the early childhood provider, have the most impact on the child.  Did you know that because of such rapid brain growth in the first few years, the child’s early experiences have an excessively greater influence on the child’s brain development?  This 7-part series explores the structure and function of the brain; factors and experiences that influence the brains’ growth and development; and the connections between the brain, language development and sensory functioning.  If you’ve ever wondered about what’s going on in the mind of a child, this series is right for you.
The Program for Infant/Toddler Care (PITC)
is the most widely used training system for infant and toddler caregivers in the country. These trainings promote the responsive process, and see the child as an active, motivated learner, where curriculum is based on observation and reflection. PITC seeks to ensure that America’s infants get a safe, healthy, emotionally secure and intellectually rich start in life. Their Philosophy is that good infant care is neither baby-sitting nor preschool. It is a special kind of care that resembles no other.  PITC describes six essential program practices that are designed to support high-quality, responsive, relationship-based care for infants and toddlers. The six program practices, which are discussed at length in this 3-part series, are an essential part of the PITC relationship-based philosophy and framework.
Birth to Three Early Learning Standards
a common framework for understanding and communicating developmentally appropriate expectations for infants and toddlers.  It is based on research about what young children should know and do in different domains of learning and development.  Each of the five domains (social/emotional, approaches to learning, language/communication, cognitive development and physical/motor development) is related to and influences the others.  This 5-session series explores each domain in depth in hopes to provide those working with the 0-3 population that common framework, so that they can promote healthy child development and high-quality care in early childhood.
Dual Language Learners and Building Cultural Responsiveness
This complete series is a 6-hour workshop that is designed to provide teachers and caregivers with methods for supporting dual language learners and their families, as well as strategies for accommodating and promoting cultural diversity in the classroom.  Participants will use what they learn throughout the training to either create or update an action plan for their programs. 
Strengthening Business Practices
This series addresses basic concepts in the fiscal and operational management of running a child care program.  These trainings are grounded in the belief that strong and sustainable child care businesses can support program initiatives aimed at improving outcomes for children.  It was created to strengthen child care programs’ foundational knowledge of fiscal terms, concepts and practices.  It also encourages providers to realize the importance of fiscal planning and provides tips and best practices to help break down fiscal processes into manageable steps.  The series is broken up into 4 modules: Modules 1 and 2 must be completed and are a pre-requisite for the optional Modules of 3 and 4.  
Strengthening Families Protective Factors Framework

is a research-informed, strengths-based approach that prevents child abuse and neglect by focusing on the well-being of all families and helping families identify and build on their own protective factors. Each of the protective factors is essential, but most important is what they do together to build strength and stability in families. Strengthening Families is implemented through a series of “small but significant changes” to daily practice, rather than large-scale program modifications.

The five Strengthening Families protective factors were chosen based on extensive research about children and families. These are not the only protective factors that keep families strong. They were selected because they can be built through interaction with the people and systems that families encounter in their day-to-day lives.

In Strengthening Families, all families are included, because all families need some support in building the following protective factors:

  • Parental Resilience – The ability to recover from difficult life experiences, and often to be strengthened by and even transformed by those experiences.
  • Social Connections – Positive relationships that provide emotional, informational, instrumental and spiritual support.
  • Knowledge of Parenting and Child Development – Understanding child development and parenting strategies that support physical, cognitive, language, social and emotional development.
  • Concrete Support in Times of Need – Access to concrete support and services that address a family’s needs and help minimize stress caused by challenges.
  • Social and Emotional Competence of Children – Family and child interactions that help children develop the ability to communicate clearly, recognize and regulate their emotions, and establish and maintain relationships.


Child Care Development Block Grant (CCDBG) Trainings:
In New Jersey, all child care and early learning programs that accept, or wish to accept, child care subsidies must comply with the requirements set forth by Child Care Development Block Grant Reauthorization (CCDBG). This includes completing the CCDBG-required trainings. These trainings are required for all licensed or registered programs including center-based programs, home-based programs and summer youth camps. For additional information, please go to


Registration for professional development trainings can be completed on the NJ Workforce Registry at For technical assistance, please contact Alyssa Lego at


Quarterly Child Care Provider Meetings
Join us for program updates, professional development, program updates and an opportunity to engage with fellow child care professionals in Camden County.


Additional Professional Development Resources: