Whether you’re an aspiring daycare teacher, or if you’re a well-established childcare educator moving in from out of state, it’s imperative for you to know how the process of completing your annual clock hours works from start to finish. You may be wondering:
“Are there free child care training classes? “
“Are child care classes online offered?”
“How do I register for these continuing education programs?”
We have all the answers you’re looking for. Let us help you connect the dots and make your next year of professional development easier.
Registering to Obtain Your Missouri Professional Development Identification (MOPD)
Nothing is worse than realizing you still have all your clock hours to complete at the last moment, so we will walk you through how Child Care Aware of Missouri works alongside other Missouri education commissions to enable the continuing education of Missouri state child care providers.
Missouri requires providers obtain a Missouri Professional Development Identification (MOPD ID) through the Opportunities in a Professional Education Network (OPEN). This ID is then used to track attendance and completion of trainings that are approved for DESO (Department of Elementary & Secondary Education) licensure clock hours. This data remains stored by OPEN in the Missouri Professional Development Registry.
Child Care Aware of Missouri, OPEN and DESE work together to maintain the Missouri Professional Development System, here’s a handy graphic to help explain the entire system to you in a more digestible manner, along with contact emails for each sector.
DESE – Department of Elementary and Secondary Education – Child Care Classes Online and Free Child Care Trainings
The Department of Elementary and Secondary education contracts with Child Care Aware of Missouri to provide families with child care referrals – in addition to free child care trainings both offered face-to-face and online.
If you require special assistance in accessing the trainings listed on DESE’s website, you may submit a request through them for a captioned video or transcript.
Caregivers working in licensed child care facilities in the State of Missouri are required to receive 12 clock hours of training approved by the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) from January 1 to December 31 each year.
Please refer to the link above prior to registering for any of DESE’s free child care classes online to ensure you are correctly registered and eligible to receive clock hours for your studies.
When registering, ensure you use the correct MOPD ID, as this will allow your clock hours to be sent directly to OPEN.
After completion of a course at DESE, you can print your certificate at the end of your child care class online, or take a screenshot, and keep it for your personal records.
National and Out of State Conferences Approved by OPEN
National conference and out-of-state trainings which are approved for clock hour credit can be found on DESE’s website.
Although these paid and free child care training have been approved for clock credit hours, you must still follow the instructions at the top of the sheet carefully for your clock hours to be recorded in OPEN.
For your clock hours to be recorded in your toolbox, you must:
- Email, Mail or Fax documentation of completion to OPEN for entry into the individual’s record.
- OPEN staff will enter data within 30 calendar days of receipt.
- Email to: [email protected]
- Mail: 1400 Rock Quarry Road, Suite Q108
Colombia, MO 65211-3280
- Fax: 573-884-4627
The Missouri Workshop Calendar – A Fantastic Resource for Paid and Free Child Care Training Classes
As you can see from the diagram above, Child Care Aware of Missouri administers the web-based Missouri Workshop Calendar. This calendar lists out all child care classes online, both in real-time and on-demand, as well as in-person classes and free child care training classes.
All the class options are approved for Missouri clock hours, making it easy for you to select the child care training class that is right for you.
All scheduled child care classes online and in-person listed on the calendar include a training description, the number of clock hours offered, the location, and registration, to help make the choice of which training to take simpler and easier for Missouri providers.
When registering for child care classes online from the Missouri Workshop Calendar, be sure to have your MOPD ID at hand. You will need to provide this during the registration process to receive your credit for completing the assigned clock hours for that program.
As an aside, please be advised that providers who do not require clock hours must still enter their MOPD ID to receive credit for the training.
You can find additional information regarding child care provider training requirements by visiting the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education’s website’s FAQ page.
Does Child Care Aware Offer Free Child Care Training Classes?
Child Care Aware® of Missouri offers a wide array of child care classes online as well as in-person trainings across the state.
If you are ready to register for a training, please download your Training Registration Form HERE. Print and complete your form. Scan and email your completed forms to
Alternatively, you can mail your completed training registration forms to:
Child Care Aware of Missouri
1000 Executive Parkway Drive, Suite 103
St. Louis, MO 63141
To find out more about sessions that are offered by Child Care Aware® of Missouri, click on the link below.
This course is 10 sessions long, and is broken out into the following subject matter:
- Positive Interactions with Children
- Child Safety & Routine Care
- Safe Environments
- Guiding Children’s Behavior
- Playing with a Purpose
- Routines, Rituals and Schedules
- Emergency Planning
This course is 4 sessions long and is broken out into the following subject matter:
- Developmentally Appropriate Practice for Infants and Toddlers
- Preventing the Abuse and Neglect of Infants and Toddlers
- What Infants and Toddlers are Telling Us
- Supporting the Development and Well-Being of Infants and Toddlers
This course is 6 sessions long and is broken out into the following subject matter:
- Relationships are Key
- Building Emotional Well-being and Social Competence in Children
- Strong Families, Strong Children
- Creating a Socially and Emotionally Aware Classroom
- Strategies for Teaching Social and Emotional Skills
- The Importance of Self-Care
This course is comprised of one in-depth session on the supervision of children, where six strategies for Active Supervision in various childcare settings will be laid out, as well as making child care professionals familiar with the SPECTRUM Alert, a procedure for reducing the risk of child elopement in a child with autism.
Training Requirements for Child Care Facilities
The amount of training required depends on the type of licensure you have. These requirements are broken down on the DESE website by facility type, options being either “Licensed,” “License-exempt,” and “6 or fewer.”
All the training requirements are for child care centers that receive federal child care subsidy payments. To continue to receive these payments, you must attend specific child care classes online, as outlined by the size of your facility.
This requirement aims to ensure children are receiving safer and more family-friendly care.
Licensed Child Care Facility Requirements
Initial Training Requirements for Licensed Child Care Facilities
- “Child Care Subsidy Orientation” This training is only required to be completed once. Only one staff member is required to take this training, that being either the director or the facility’s owner. Approved options for completing this training include free child care training online at https://apps.dss.mo.gov/childcareorientation/; alternatively, Educare also offers this as free in-person training. To learn more about the Educare provider covering your county, you may visit https://dss.mo.gov/cd/child-care/child-care-providers/educare.htm.
- “CCDF Health and Safety Training” is another child care class online that you must only complete once. Approved options to complete this free child care training are to take the training for free online at https://apps.dss.mo.gov/cdtraining/ or by accessing a free in-person class through Educare by clicking the link above and looking for the Educare provider who covers your county.
- “Pediatric First Aid and Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR)” This training must be kept current, as it will expire every two years. First Aid/CPR training is only accepted from the following national models:
- American Academy of Pediatrics PedFACTS
- American Heart Association
- EMS Safety
- Emergency Care and Safety Institute
- American Trauma Event Management (ATEM)
- American Red Cross
- American Safety and Health Institute
- National Safety Council
To complete your first aid/CPR training, you have a few options. You may either enroll through the Missouri Workshop Calendar or pay to have training conducted by a trainer who offers certificates from one of the national models listed above.
You will need to email your certificate to [email protected] Alternatively, you may contact your local health department, as they may offer a free pediatric first aid/CPR certification option.
Please be advised that CPR child care classes online are not allowed. All First Aid/CPR training must be taken in-person and obtain a certification from the approved model.
License-Exempt Child Care Facility Requirements
Initial Training Requirements for License-Exempt Child Care Facilities
The required training for license-exempt child care facilities are much the same as for licensed facilities.
- You must complete your “Child Care Subsidy Orientation” free child care training, though it is only required that one staff member, an owner, or a director, complete this.
- Secondly, you will be required to complete the “CCDF Health and Safety Training”, which is another child care class online, or in-person.
- Lastly, you must take your Pediatric First Aid and CPR course, which must be kept current, and received through a national accrediting body as listed out above.
Though exemptions to the annual training requirements exist for renewing providers, we suggest that you review these requirements directly to see if you qualify for any of these exemptions.
Requirements for Child Care Facilities with 6 or Fewer Children
Initial Training Requirements for 6 or Fewer
The training requirements for child care facilities with 6 or fewer children are the same as the above requirements for licensed and license-exempt facilities.
You are still able to attend free child care training online, and paid child care classes online, if they are through accredited bodies okayed through DESE.
Safe Sleep Training
Section 210.223, RSMo, requires that child care facilities licensed to provide care to children less than one (1) year of age complete department-approved training on the recent safe sleep recommendations of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) every three years.
Safe Sleep Training must be on the Toolbox safe sleep training report. A list of department-approved safe sleep training can be found on the MO Workshop Calendar, under the blue “Safe Sleep” tab. The safe sleep training is offered both as a free child care training in-person and as a child care class online.
Staying Up to Date on Your Clock Hour Requirements through DESE, OPEN and Child Care Aware of Missouri
Trying to stay up to date on all your clock hour requirements can seem like a daunting task. That is why Child Care Aware of Missouri, DESE, and OPEN have created a multitude of continuing education resources for our child care professionals.
Realizing that you are a busy child care educator, we have designed our program to offer as many free child care training and child care classes online as possible. Our goal is to keep our teachers and facilitators up to date on the latest in child care safety, growth, and well-being. This in turn carries over to the care that your children receive while learning at one of our Missouri child care facilities.
Key Takeaways from this Article
- Be proactive in maintaining your clock hours. You do not want to get stuck at the last-minute scrambling to attain all your credits.
- Utilize the resources listed on the MO Workshop Calendar, DESE, and other accredited websites as mentioned in this article.
- Register in a timely manner for your child care classes online, and especially for those free child care trainings that are in-person, as they tend to book up quickly.
- Add reminders to your calendars so that you are not at risk of forgetting to sign up for your courses prior to when your clock hours are due.
- Lastly, remember that Child Care Aware of Missouri, DESE, and OPEN are here with you to assist you, your facility, and the children that you teach receive the highest quality of training and care possible.