Training for Child Care Providers, Early Learning Educators, and Parents

CLICK HERE  go to Great Start to Quality and from there, click on "Professional Development." Choose the county you would like to complete your training - classroom, online, and correspondence courses are available at various times! Registration can be done online


Find Child Care

Finding a quality preschool or childcare provider is just a click away! is an online listing of early childhood resources including a searchable database that families can access 24/7 in order to find local licensed childcare and preschool providers.


Contact Us


Great Start to Quality Kent Resource Center
1800 Leffingwell
Grand Rapids, MI 49525
(616) 447-5678
Fax (616) 301-8836


Connections Summer 2012

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Access the Early Learning & Development Programs Great Start to Quality STARS User Manual


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                          Great Start to Quality Kent Resource Center


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• Assists parents, early learning educators and unlicensed subsidized providers with access to the five STAR Tiered Quality Rating and Improvement System


• Provides consultation, training and professional/workforce development opportunities to early learning educators


• Provides community outreach in the region regarding the importance of high quality early learning settings


• Offers access to die cutting, laminating services, and poster creation through the Regional Education Media Center at the Kent Intermediate School District


• Provides technical support for updating profiles or registering for training


• A Resource Library for providers


                                                 Funded by



Looking for a way to pay for it all? Apply for a T.E.A.C.H. Scholarship!



T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® MICHIGAN links education, compensation and commitment to improving the quality of early education.

T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® MICHIGAN is a statewide scholarship program designed to help child care center teaching staff, preschool teachers, family child care providers, group home owners, center directors, and administrators meet their professional development goals, while continuing their current employment in regulated early childhood and school age care settings.

T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® MICHIGAN addresses two major challenges in the early education and care field – low wages and high turnover. The scholarship helps increase compensation and the retention of skilled teachers.
The education level of child care providers is one of the most critical indicators of the quality of a child’s experiences in child care.

Currently, there are five scholarship models to support
credit-based education:

  • Building Foundations
  • CDA Assessment
  • Part-time Associate's Degree
  • Associate's Degree (or CDA Training)
  • Bachelor's Degree.

T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® MICHIGAN, the scholarship recipient, and the sponsoring program work in partnership.

Great Start to Quality Orientation


Relative Caregivers and Day Care Aides - You are now required to take the Great Start to Quality Orientation to continue receiving payment from the State of Michigan to care for children. YOU MUST REGISTER TO ATTEND THIS TRAINING - SPACES ARE LIMITED!

Go to and click on "Training" to find a training date and location. Or, call our office at 616.447.5678


Michigan's Office of Great Start with the Michigan Department of Education.

A new office in Michigan to oversee early learning. Learn more!



                                GS Collaborative


The Great Start Collaborative of Kent County is a group of local professionals and parents who are working with First Steps and others in the community to help ensure all children have a GREAT START in life.

Our local Collaborative is part of a network of 55 Great Start Collaboratives working in every county in Michigan. The Great Start system is funded by the Early Childhood Investment Corporation , a public corporation formed in 2005.

There is a Great Start parent Coalition affiliated with every Great Start Collaborative, providing parents with an opportunity to inform, shape, and support the early childhood work in their community. Please click here to learn more about the Great Start Parent Coalition in Kent County.

For more information about the Great Start Collaborative, contact GSC Director Judy Freeman at 616.632.1019 or