Child & Family Development

Child and family development professionals strive to improve the lives of children and families by supporting effective early education, healthy interactions within families, and thriving family environments. 

  • Early childhood educator (infants, toddlers, and preschool)
  • Early childhood education center director/administrator
  • Family childcare provider
  • Child life specialist
  • Case management
  • Child development consultant
  • Community resource & referral professional
  • Toy research and development professional
  • Parent educator
  • Adoption or foster care coordinator
  • After-school program director
  • Social worker (requires a graduate degree)
  • Counselor- marriage and family therapy (requires a graduate degree)
  • Occupational therapist (requires a graduate degree)

  • Early childhood education centers 
  • Preschools, primary schools, and secondary schools 
  • Private households 
  • College and university childcare centers
  • Private businesses 
  • Social service agencies
  • Healthcare organizations
  • Local, state, and federal government agencies
  • Therapeutic/hospital settings
  • Non-profit child-advocacy organizations
  • Non-profit agencies


According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, new job opportunities for childcare workers are very likely in the future. 7 percent job growth by 2024 (CA and US). 

Median annual wages

  • Childcare providers: $25,100 CA, $23,240 US
  • Preschool teachers: $37,850 CA, $29,780 US
  • Center directors: $47,940 US
  • Salary can range across private, public and nonprofit sectors
  • Salary is often based on education and experience

Service orientation

Child and family development professionals strive to improve the lives of children and families.

Instructional skills

Child and family development professionals use evidence-based practices to provide high-quality learning environments for diverse children and families.

Decision-making skills

Child and family development professionals understand and employ sound ethical and professional principles in all of their interactions with diverse children and families, particularly when responding to difficult situations. 

Communication skills

Child and family development professionals communicate clearly with diverse parents and colleagues. They use effective oral communication skills and listening skills to address family concerns. 

Interpersonal skills

Child and family service workers enjoy working with children and families and need excellent interpersonal skills to develop good relationships with parents, children, and colleagues.


Child and family development professionals need to provide developmentally appropriate interactions to children at different learning levels and must respond calmly in difficult situations. 

Physical stamina

Working with children and families requires a lot of energy. Child and family development professionals often manage diverse groups of children, respond to unique situations, and on their feet for long periods.