There are rich opportunities for individuals holding Birth-Kindergarten licensure in southeastern North Carolina and across the state. This is due in part to the proliferation of public school pre-kindergarten classrooms. Many new positions in other settings are supported by a number of agencies that provide assistance in child care, health services, and support for families of children birth-kindergarten.
Individuals with B-K licensure are qualified for the following kinds of positions.
- Teacher in public school kindergarten, pre-kindergarten, and preschool special needs classrooms. Pre-kindergarten classes, like Head Start, are designed to provide enriched experiences for four-year-olds who may be at risk of kindergarten failure. Public schools are also mandated to serve children with special needs starting at age three, so early intervention for these children is provided in the context of these (mostly self-contained) preschool special needs classrooms.
- Teachers in Head Start Classrooms. Currently most Head Start programs require that lead teachers hold a bachelor's degree.
- Teacher or early intervention specialists in developmental day programs. These programs serve children with special needs in center-based as well as home-based settings. For example, a specialist working with the United Cerebral Palsy child development center consults with staff in other child care centers who are including children with special needs in their classrooms.
- Early intervention specialist with developmental evaluation centers or other agencies that provide diagnosis and services for young children with special needs.
- Parent educator. For example, the Parents as Teachers program sends parent educators into homes to help parents of children birth-three provide developmentally appropriate activities and interact positively with their children.
- Licensing consultant for child care centers and family child care homes. Consultants for the North Carolina Division of Child Development inspect facilities for licensing purposes and consult with staff members about how to improve their programs and meet state standards.
- Assessor of program quality. New child care regulations in North Carolina allow child care facilities to receive more "stars" in a rated licensing system if they meet programs quality standards defined as higher scores on a rating scale. Many assessors are being hired statewide to perform these ratings.
- Program staff in child care resource and referral agency, Smart Start partnership, and other similar agencies. For example, staff members in local agencies provide referrals to parents and educate them about the characteristics of high quality child care as well as providing consultations and workshops for child care providers to help them enhance program quality.
- Child care preschool center director or teacher. These programs operate in for-profit centers, non-profit centers, and churches.
This list is not all-inclusive, but it illustrates the variety of opportunities available in this field. Other graduates choose to become self-employed and open their own child care center or family child care home.