Washington DC

Overall Policy Lever Score


Child care licensing minimally require directors to have three years of experience working in a licensed child development center and an associate degree in early childhood education or child development. Directors must attain a bachelor’s degree within six years of hire as the director.  The District of Columbia does not have a director credential. The Capital Quality QRIS, minimally requires the administrator to have an associate degree based on the requirement that participating programs be licensed and nationally accredited. Elementary school principals are minimally required to have a bachelor’s degree for licensure with a valid administrator license issued from another state.

Interesting Facts: Washington DC

  • The District of Columbia joins 5 states in requiring an associate degree for the director of a child development center of any size.

  • Washington, D.C. has the highest average salary for child care directors ($68,180) and elementary principals ($160,213) in the nation.

  • Trinity Washington University offers a master’s degree in early childhood program administration.