Daycare Director: Job Description, Salary & Licensing

Find out what you'll need to achieve if you want to become a daycare director. Learn more about the day-to-day work, the education requirements, the recommended licensure, and the median income for this career path. Schools offering Child Care Services degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Career Information at a Glance

Daycare directors are responsible for ensuring that students have access to the necessary tools they need as they develop physically, intellectually, and socially. They oversee all internal entities within a daycare center in order to do so. In the table below, you'll find the education requirements, licensure options, necessary skill set, median income, and projected job growth for daycare directors.

Education Required Bachelor's degree required in most states
Field of Study Early Childhood Education
Licensure Many states require Child Development Associate (CDA) credential
Certification Some states require CPR and first aid certifications
Required Skills Interpersonal skills, organizational skills, leadership skills, business skills
Projected Job Growth (2016-2026) 11% (for all preschool and childcare center directors)*
Median Income (2017) $46,890 annually (for all preschool and childcare center directors)*

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Does a Daycare Director Do?

Daycare directors oversee all of the functions and maintenance of a childcare center. They are responsible for ensuring that the lesson plans engage students in learning and play. They are also tasked with hiring all staff, ensuring that these workers hold the necessary certifications to meet state standards, and for offering the workers with opportunities for professional development. Often times, they are required to meet with parents to discuss a student's progress and development. They are also responsible for preparing budget plans and making sure that students and educators have the necessary resources they need in order to succeed.

What Are the Education and Training Requirements?

Most states require that daycare directors earn a bachelor's degree in early childhood education. This type of coursework equips daycare directors with the knowledge of how students develop both cognitively and physically, how to measure children's progress, and how to handle any learning or behavioral issues that may arise. It is common for most states to require that daycare directors acquire work experience in early childhood education before taking on a role as a director.

How Do I Obtain the Necessary Credentials for Licensure?

While requirements vary between states, any staff member working in a childcare center is generally required to pass a background check and show proof of completed immunization records. Many states require that daycare directors earn their nationally recognized Child Development Associate (CDA) credential, which is approved by the Council for Professional Recognition. Daycare directors must earn the center-based credential at either the preschool level or the infant/toddler level. Candidates are eligible for this credential once they complete training hours that cover the CAD core subject areas, obtain the necessary number of working hours, and undergo additional hours in which they are observed while working with children. All of these requirements are to be synthesized by a candidate and put together in a CDA Professional Portfolio that is then reviewed by the council to determine if the credential can be granted. Several states also require that these workers hold CPR and first aid certifications to work in a daycare.

What Skills Are Useful for Daycare Directors?

Interpersonal skills are essential for daycare directors because they need to develop positive working relationships with students, parents, and staff members. Leadership skills are also important for daycare directors because they need to exemplify to other staff members, to parents, and to students that they take their work seriously and carry it out in an efficient and effective manner. Daycare directors must also be well-organized to ensure that the daycare center meets all the objectives of lesson plan development and implementation that abide by state regulations. Additionally, business skills prove essential when managing and allocating funds across departments to ensure that all staff and students have the necessary resources and tools for success.

How Much Do Daycare Directors Make?

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that preschool and childcare center directors earned a median income of $46,890 annually as of May 2017. Employment in this industry is projected to grow 11% between 2016 and 2026 as the population continues to increase. As early childhood education continues to earn a reputation as an important factor of childhood development, the need for daycare centers and those that direct them is expected to increase as well.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

Popular Schools

  • Purdue University Global

    Purdue University Global responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Purdue University Global:

    Online Programs Available

  • Ashford University

    Ashford University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Ashford University:

    Online Programs Available

  • Southern New Hampshire University

    Southern New Hampshire University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Southern New Hampshire University:

    • Bachelor Degrees

    Online Programs Available

  • Colorado Christian University

    Colorado Christian University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Colorado Christian University:

    • Associate Programs

    Online Programs Available

  • Central Christian College of Kansas

    Central Christian College of Kansas responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Central Christian College of Kansas:

    • Associate Programs

    Online Programs Available

  • Regent University

    Regent University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Regent University:

    • Master
    • Bachelor Degrees

    Online Programs Available

  • New England College

    New England College responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at New England College:

    • Bachelor Degrees
    • Associate Programs

    Online Programs Available

  • Penn Foster High School

    Penn Foster High School responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Penn Foster High School:

    Online Programs Available

  • Post University

    Post University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Post University:

    • Bachelor Degrees

    Online Programs Available

  • Northcentral University

    Northcentral University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Northcentral University:

    Online Programs Available

  1. 1
  2. 2
  3. Next »