Professional Development

​​​Evolving the Kentucky Professional Development Framework into a Workforce Development Plan

Kentucky envisions learning as a continuum, beginning at birth and continuing throughout life. This is reflected in the strong alliances among early childhood educators, public school administrators, and institutions of higher education, parent associations, and the business community.


The Kentucky Early Childhood Standards (The Standards), first developed in 2003, by a statewide workgroup of representative stakeholders in early care and education, are designed as a framework to assist early care, intervention, and education professionals, administrators, and others in understanding what children are able to know and do from birth through four years of age. The Early Childhood Standards, housed within the Kentucky Governor's Office of Early Childhood, enables early care and education professionals and others to become more knowledgeable in providing the experiences to help children reach their full potential.

Preschool Development Grant

In 2018, the Kentucky Governor's Office of Early Childhood was awarded $10,620,000 through the Preschool Development Birth through Five (PDG B-5) Grant. The purpose of this one-year grant was to achieve Kentucky's goals of strengthening and unifying the comprehensive early childhood system, to support all young children and their caregivers, but especially highly vulnerable children and children in rural or limited accessibility areas of the state. Two deliverables of the grant were to review and revise The Standards and Professional Development Framework. This work was managed by two Early Childhood Advisory Council subcommittees; Tiered Quality Rating and Improvement System and the Professional Development Subcommittees.

Both documents were reviewed by a group of national early childhood experts with input from early childhood professionals from Kentucky. As part of the revision process, Kentucky early childhood professionals provided feedback and recommendations to the national content experts regarding their revisions of The Standards. Members of workgroups consisting of state-level experts in the field of professional development, and training and technical assistance, were formed to meet deliverables of the federal grant. These workgroups reviewed various state professional development systems including technical assistance, trainers credential, director credential, and career pathways, and provided their expertise and recommendations for possible changes needed to transition the current Framework into an Early Childhood Workforce Development Plan. Kentucky received written reports from the national content experts containing notes, revisions, suggested next steps, and national trends to consider as the state finalizes both documents.

Moving Forward

Subcommittees will review the reports and finalize a plan to complete the revision of The Standards so they are used by early care, intervention, and education professionals, and others in understanding what children are able to know and do from birth through four years of age. Subcommittees will also review the reports to transition the Kentucky Professional Development Framework into a Workforce Development Plan that will be used by professionals throughout a unified early care and education system. 

​​High-Quality Workforce Committee

Check out this video message about the High-Quality Workforce Committee:

Early Childhood Institute 

An overview of the Kentucky Early Childhood Professional Development (PD) Framework that includes existing programs and supports, as well as the components of the PD Framework plan that have been implemented across the state.Kentucky’s Early Childhood Professional Development Framework
The Early Childhood Regional Training Centers provide a range of services for the early childhood community including regional trainings, workshops, on-site consultations, library of materials, annual statewide, and regional collaborative institutes.​​​​​​​Early Childhood Regional Training Centers
The Division of Child Care administers the following professional development programs, non-college scholarships, awards, and mini-grants to the extent funds are available.The Division of Child Care
The ECE-TRIS system captures all Early Care and Education Professionals training records and training activities.Early Care and Education Training Records Information System
The Office of Head Start believes a minimum of 15 clock hours of professional development per year is key for all program staff members who support the progress of children’s development.Kentucky Head Start