Introducing: Penn Foster’s Child Care Professional Career Diploma Program

While PCDI is no longer accepting enrollments in our Child Care Provider Program, we’re excited to introduce you to our partner school, Penn Foster.

PCDI Canada and Penn Foster Logos

If you're interested in becoming a childcare professional, Penn Foster's online Child Care Professional Career Diploma Program can help you prepare for this career.


Take the Next Steps Towards a Career You'll Love

Penn Foster’s Child Care Professional Career Diploma can help you prepare to take the next steps toward the job you want and get you ready to earn your Child Development Associate (CDA) Credential. Learn the skills you need to enter the field as a teacher’s aide, preschool aide, in-home childcare provider, or nanny.

Why Penn Foster?

Penn Foster has been on a mission to help people like you obtain skills and achieve their career goals for more than 130 years. We provide students with a quality education that fits their busy lifestyle and budget, offering over 100 self-paced, career-relevant programs across our College, Career School, and High School. Every course is designed to work with your schedule, anytime, anywhere you want to study. With a focus on relevant skills and career prep for the job you’re after, Penn Foster can help you graduate with confidence and help provide a guide towards your career goals.

What You'll Learn in Penn Foster’s Online Child Care Professional Diploma Program

  • Ways to oversee and ensure the safety and well-being of the children under your supervision.
  • Methods for arranging suitable activities and following educational plans encourage healthy social and emotional growth, and development in areas like math, science, and literacy.
  • How to identify signs of possible delays in children's social, emotional, physical, or cognitive development, including recognizing various developmental disabilities.
  • You'll also learn how to create plans for children with special needs and communicate these concerns to the appropriate individuals, such as teachers and parents.
  • Keeping track of children's progress, daily routines, and interests through recording observations and details about activities, meals, and medications administered.

Penn Foster’s Child Care Professional Curriculum

Our Child Care Program curriculum will help you build the fundamental skills and knowledge necessary to work in an entry-level child care role. This includes classes in child development; curriculum and lesson planning; and health, safety, and nutrition.

The program also offers two specializations for you to choose from — family home-based child care or center-based child care. The choice of specialization courses allows you to receive concentrated training for the area of employment you want to pursue in the early childhood care industry. Your online courses include:

  • Child Growth and Development
  • Observation and Assessment
  • Curriculum, Activities, and Lesson Planning
  • Health, Safety, and Nutrition for the Young Child
See Full Curriculum  

Learn More About the Penn Foster Experience

At Penn Foster, we think online learning can make a big difference in people's lives, and it should be available to everyone. That's why we've made our programs affordable and tailored to fit your needs. You can learn and improve your skills for the job you want, all at your own pace and on your own schedule.

Child Care Professional FAQs

Where can I get a job as a childcare professional? 

Childcare professionals work in a variety of settings under numerous job titles. Some of the most popular places where childcare professionals work include childcare centers, elementary schools, and private households. Many childcare providers are self-employed. Some potential positions that you could pursue after completing your online childcare coursework include childcare aide, child caregiver, teacher aide, nursery school aide/helper, and au pair.

How much does a childcare professional make? 

The salary or hourly pay for a childcare professional can vary based on work experience, education, the facility you work for, and more. According to national averages from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median salary for entry-level childcare workers in 2021 was $27,490 per year or $13.22 per hour. * Childcare workers can potentially increase how much they can earn by gaining their CDA Credential.

What is the role of an early childhood professional? 

A childcare or early childhood professional plays a vital role in helping children learn and reach developmental goals. Child care professionals provide care for children in a childcare center, preschool, or home-based setting, and daily might perform tasks like organizing educational activities, developing routines for children in their care, and ensuring children meet developmental goals.

What is the job outlook for a childcare worker? 

As more and more households rely on both parents to hold full-time jobs, the need for childcare providers can be expected to remain steady. In addition, the demand for preschools and childcare facilities, and consequently childcare workers, should remain strong because early childhood education is widely recognized as important for a child’s intellectual and emotional development.


*Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor. "Childcare Workers." Occupational Outlook Handbook. Accessed October 3, 2023.

Statements found in the United States Department of Labor Occupational Outlook Handbook are not a guarantee of any post-graduation salary, in part because the data used to create the Occupational Outlook Handbook includes workers from differing educational backgrounds, levels of experience, and geographic areas of the country.

What is Penn Foster?

PCDI is part of the Penn Foster Network. Penn Foster, PCDI’s partner school, has been a leading provider of distance education and online, career-focused training programs for over 130 years. Like PCDI, Penn Foster’s programs are affordable, fully online, and self-paced, allowing you to build skills and prepare for the job you want on your terms.