Early Childhood Education (ECE) Apprenticeship


  • Apprenticeships

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Since 2017, the Philadelphia Early Childhood Education Apprenticeship Apprenticeships: An arrangement between a developing educator and an employer (e.g., a child care program) that allows the educator to participate in on-the-job professional learning and related coursework. Apprenticeship programs are often sponsored by government agencies and/or non-profit organizations. Program has been led by the District 1199c Training & Upgrading Fund. Partner organizations include the Community College of Philadelphia and the Delaware Valley Association for the Education of Young Children. The program supports apprentices by helping them earn college credits and participate in classroom instruction, on-the-job training, and mentorship. It receives public workforce development funding under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act. The Training Fund began developing its apprenticeship model in 2015, and the organization produces guides for replication.


Early Childhood Action Collective. (n.d.). Philadelphia Early Childhood Education Apprenticeship Program.

District 1199C Training and Upgrading Fund. (n.d.). Program Replication Tool Kit.

Connections to Key Early Learning Study at Harvard (ELS@H) Findings:

The early education workforce is the foundation upon which all daily work and any expansion and quality improvement efforts rest. Research suggests that states and cities should invest in the workforce across all early education setting types, focusing on enhancing educators’ professional learning, compensation, and workplace conditions.

Findings from the Early Learning Study at Harvard (ELS@H) show:

  • Early educators play a critical role in supporting the well-being of young children and families across setting types.
  • Yet their pay, benefits, and other professional supports are often inadequate in light of the job demands and their cost of living.
Learn More about ELS@H Findings

Learn more about Philadelphia

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  • The city population is 1,576,251
  • The number of children under age 5 is 6.40%
  • The median family income among households with children is $47,000