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SCHOLARSHIPS & INCENTIVES

SCHOLARSHIPS Program Supporting Professional Development

The SCHOLARSHIPS program provides tuition assistance and support for Georgia’s early care and education professionals pursuing post – secondary credentials or degrees in early childhood education or child development. SCHOLARSHIPS assists eligible applicants with college tuition and mandatory fees while providing a support stipend directly to the recipient. Support stipends, currently $500 per semester, may be used for books, supplies, travel costs, or to meet individual student needs. SCHOLARSHIPS’ recipients may enroll in a Technical College System of Georgia institution or any other HOPE-eligible, public or private, college or university accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS). Eligible institutions must offer an approved program of study in the above-identified fields. Recipients may pursue a technical college certificate; a technical college diploma/degree; an Associate or Bachelor’s degree. SCHOLARSHIPS also supports the community – based Child Development Associate (CDA) credential, covering the one-time cost of the CDA assessment fee.

Early care and education professionals who work with children birth through five years of age who earn $15.00 or less per hour may be eligible for SCHOLARSHIPS. Teachers, assistant teachers, directors or assistant directors and family child care providers licensed by Bright from the Start or Department of Defense child care program staff, may be eligible. Teachers and assistant teachers must work at least 25 hours per week in a child care setting; directors, and assistant directors must work 40 hours per week.

For a SCHOLARSHIPS application and more detailed information, visit the DECAL Scholars website at www.DECALScholars.com or call 770-642-6722 or 1-800-227-3410 (toll-free).

The SCHOLARSHIPS Program is a professional development initiative of Bright from the Start: Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning, designed to increase the number of well-qualified and credentialed professionals in early care and education settings.

INCENTIVES Program Supporting Professional Development

INCENTIVES is a salary bonus program that rewards Georgia’s early care and education professionals for their educational attainment and for remaining employed in the same child care program for at least 12 consecutive months. Awards range from $250 to $1250 depending on the level of education attained. Approved applicants, who meet all program eligibility requirements, receive two payments at each higher level attained.

To be eligible for INCENTIVES, applicants must hold a technical college certificate or diploma, an Associate, Bachelor’s or advanced degree in early childhood education or child development, or a Child Development Associate (CDA) credential They must also have been employed in the same child care program for at least 12 consecutive months and work with children birth through five years of age. Eligible professionals earn $15.00 or less per hour and work as teachers, assistant teachers, directors or assistant directors in a licensed child care program that is state or nationally accredited; that serves high need children receiving a subsidy; or has been Quality Rated by the state and earned one of three “star” levels. Teachers and assistant teachers must work at least 25 hours per week in a child care setting; owners, directors and assistant directors must work 40 hours per week.

For an INCENTIVES application and more detailed information about eligibility and benefits, visit the DECAL Scholars website at www.DECALScholars.com or call 770-642-6722 or 1-800-227-3410 (toll-free).

The INCENTIVES Program is a professional development initiative of Bright from the Start: Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning designed to increase the number of well-qualified and credentialed professionals in early care and education settings; and to impact employment stability through financial support of an historically low-wage industry.

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