Financial Assistance for the National CDA
CDA Awards help providers pay for the required training, application, and renewal of the nationally recognized Child Development Associate Credential (CDA). Applications are accepted at any time. Awards are distributed on a quarterly basis.
CDA Application Fee Scholarship
The CDA Application Fee Scholarship is for anyone who has not yet applied to the Council for Professional Recognition for their initial CDA or renewal. This award is paid directly to The Council to cover a portion of the application fee.
After notifying the recipient, Child Care Aware of Minnesota will set up a voucher with the Council for Professional Recognition to cover $300 of the initial CDA application cost. The recipient will pay the difference. For renewals, the voucher will cover $75 of the CDA renewal application cost. The recipient will pay the difference. Applicants are limited to receiving funding for one Initial CDA and one renewal.
You may apply for a CDA Application and Training Reimbursement after you have received your CDA certificate.
CDA Application Fee and Training Reimbursement
The CDA Application Fee and Training Reimbursement is for anyone who has received a new CDA certificate within one year of the first day of the application round. Reimbursement is paid directly to the awardee.
The portion of the application fee paid by the awardee (either $125 or $425 for an initial CDA, or $50 or $125 for a renewal) will be reimbursed. Training costs are reimbursed at the rate of $5 per hour up to a maximum of $600 for an initial CDA and $225 for a renewal. Training that is more than 5 years old cannot be reimbursed. Applicants are limited to receiving funding for one Initial CDA and one renewal.
All applicants must:
- Hold a current Develop Individual Membership.
- Complete all training requirements set by the Council for Professional Recognition. Training required for a CDA must appear as verified on a Develop CDA Learning Record under the approved training section.
CDA Application Fee Scholarship applicants must also:
- Be ready to apply to the Council for Professional Recognition and have a YourCouncil Customer ID number.
- Be employed, or volunteer at a licensed or license-exempt early childhood program. The work setting must match the CDA type and be verified on a Develop Learning Record.
CDA Application Fee and Training Reimbursement applicants must also:
- Have received their initial CDA or renewal certificate within one year of the beginning of the application round.
- Be employed or volunteer at a licensed or license-exempt early childhood program at the time the CDA was received. Employment must be verified on a Develop Learning Record.
Applicants are limited to receiving funding for one Initial CDA and one renewal.
- Compile the supporting documents listed below:
- Your CDA Learning Record from Develop which must include:
- A current Develop Membership
- Required training for your CDA listed as “Verified”
- Employment or volunteerism that is verified and includes Start Date and Age Group(s).
- Recent paystub or copy of your Family Child Care License (or a Volunteer Verification Form if a volunteer)
- A copy of your CDA Certificate if you currently hold a CDA credential
- For Scholarship applications: Your ID Number from your YourCouncil account
- Your CDA Learning Record from Develop which must include:
- Apply online at any time by completing the CDA Application Fee Scholarship Application or completing the CDA Application Fee and Training Reimbursement Application.Your application submission date will determine the grant round you are eligible for.
|Application Date||Award Notification Date|
|February 1 – April 30||May 10|
|May 1 – July 31||August 10|
|August 1 – October 31||November 10|
|November 1 – January 31||February 10|
View a recorded Information Session to learn more about applying for the CDA Award.
Should I apply for a scholarship or a reimbursement?
If you have not yet applied to the Council for Professional Recognition for your initial CDA or your renewal, you should apply for a scholarship. After receiving your new CDA certificate, you should apply for reimbursement. You must meet all of the listed criteria for each award in order to apply.
Does my scholarship expire?
Yes, your voucher will expire 60 days from the date of notification.
How are the award results determined?
CDA scholarships and reimbursements are awarded based on eligibility, available funding, and a scoring system.
Where can I find the required 120 hours of training?
- Contact your local Child Care Aware of Minnesota office to learn about upcoming Minnesota Child Development Associate (MNCDA) and Minnesota Infant Toddler Child Development Associate (MNITCDA) cohort opportunities.
- Additional approved training can be found on Develop.
- Contact CDA@childcareawaremn.org for questions regarding training you have already completed or for assistance developing a professional development plan to complete requirements.
The CDA Professional Development Specialist Stipend (PDS Stipend) recognizes the education and experience of Professional Development Specialists (PD Specialists) by supplementing the honorarium offered by the Council for Professional Recognition upon completion of a CDA verification visit. Information about becoming a Professional Development Specialist for the Council for Professional Recognition can be found on their website.
At this time, the $300 stipend is limited to PD Specialists who have completed a verification visit for educators who completed the MNCDA or MNITCDA training series, and/or educators who have received a CDA Award. Be sure to ask the CDA candidate you are working with for verification of their training completion and/or CDA Award.
Eligible PD Specialist must have a current Develop membership with a minimum Career Lattice Step of 9d. A step of 9d aligns with the minimum education requirements for a PD Specialist as set by the Council. Eligible observation visits must occur within 3 months of the start date of the current application round.
The Professional Development Specialist Stipend Application is accepted at any time. Stipends are awarded in February, May, August, and November. You may submit information for up to two visits on one application. One application can be submitted per application round.
If you have questions, please email CDA@childcareawaremn.org.