What Is the Average Salary of a Child Day Care Provider?

Are you interested in caring for and inspiring young children? The average salary for a child day care provider is lower than many other occupations, but the job can offer you the chance to set your own hours as a self-employed worker. Read on to learn more about average salaries. Schools offering Child Care Services degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Salary Overview

Child day care providers nurture and look after children in a variety of locations including parents' houses, their own homes, day care centers and after-school programs. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), childcare workers earned an average annual wage of $21,310 as of May 2012 (www.bls.gov). Most professionals in the field earned salaries ranging from $16,340-$29,510.

Although the pay is relatively low, childcare workers often have flexible work schedules and can stay self-employed. The BLS reported that 29% of childcare workers were self-employed and more than 30% of day care workers held part-time positions in 2012. In addition, employment growth of 14% is expected in this field from 2012-2022, which is an average rate compared to other occupations.

Salaries by Employment Field

Your salary as a child day care worker can vary based on the place that you work, according to the BLS in May 2012. The majority of childcare workers were employed at child day care centers, where their average yearly salary was $19,710. Elementary and secondary schools were the next largest employer of childcare workers and paid a higher annual mean salary of $23,940. Other industries that employ these professionals included other amusement and recreation industries, civic and social organizations and other residential care facilities. Mean wages for these industries were $19,880, $19,800 and $23,020, respectively.

The highest-paid childcare providers worked for the state government, and they were paid a mean wage of $29,980 per year as of May 2012, reported the BLS. Other high-paying industries for childcare workers included museums, historical sites and other similar institutions; outpatient care centers; scientific research and development services; and legal services. All these sectors paid workers a yearly mean salary of $25,850 or higher as of May 2012, according to BLS figures.

Salaries by Region

The best paying states for childcare workers were the District of Columbia, Massachusetts and New York, reported the BLS. As of May 2012, these three states paid mean salaries $30,490, $25,500 and $24,770, respectively. New York also had one of the highest concentrations of childcare workers, with 68,460 workers in the state as of May 2012, according to the BLS. Another state with a very high concentration of childcare providers was Kentucky, and the BLS reported that the 14,000 workers there made mean wages of $18,890.

Salaries by Experience

According to January 2014 figures from PayScale.com, day care worker salaries differ based on experience. Those with 1-4 years of experience made $13,809-$45,615 per year. While those possessing 5-9 years of experience made $21,287-$49,316, those with 10-19 years of experience were paid $15,319-$40,268.

Education Opportunities

The BLS stated that child day care providers with some childhood education or training usually have increased employment options. You might want to earn your Child Development Associate (CDA) credential with the Council for Professional Recognition to gain more job opportunities (www.cdacouncil.org). You can specialize in family childcare, which focuses on children ages five and under or infant/toddler care for young children under 36 months old. Both credentials usually require you to hold a high school diploma, complete 120 hours of formal training in childhood education and 480 hours of professional experience.

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