Federal Offices and National Organizations

It takes a village to raise a child. Likewise, it takes the collective efforts of many to develop resources and support those who teach and advocate for children. Below are links to federal offices, national organizations, and research institutions where you will find more resources regarding professional development.

Federal Offices

Department of Education:

  • Office of Early Learning (OEL)
    OEL is the principal office charged with supporting the DOE's Early Learning Initiative. Its main goal is improving the health, social-emotional, and cognitive outcomes for children from birth through third grade. OEL strives to ensure that all children, particularly those with high needs, are on track for graduating from high school college- and career-ready.
  • Office of Special Education and Rehabilitation Services (OSERS)
    OSERS supports programs that help educate children and youth with disabilities and provides for the rehabilitation of youth and adults with disabilities. It also supports research to improve the lives of individuals with disabilities. OSERS offers a wide array of supports to parents and individuals, school districts, and states in three main areas: special education, vocational rehabilitation, and research.
  • Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP)
    OSEP is dedicated to improving results for infants, toddlers, children, and youth with disabilities ages birth through 21. It provides leadership and financial support to assist states and local districts.

Administration for Children and Families (ACF):

  • Office of Child Care (OCC)
    • Child Care Technical Assistance Network (CCTAN)
      Through the CCTAN and federal leadership, OCC provides training and technical assistance to states, territories, tribes, and local communities.
    • Child Care Aware® (CCA)
      CCA is the national information hub for parents and child care providers. A program of Child Care Aware® of America, it helps families learn more about the elements of quality child care and how to locate programs in their communities. CCA also connects child care providers to resources for their child care programs.
    • Child Care and Early Education Research Connections
      Child Care and Early Education Research Connections promotes high quality research in child care and early education, as well as the use of that research in policy making. Research Connections is a partnership between the National Center for Children in Poverty (NCCP) at the Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University, and the Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR) at the Institute for Social Research, University of Michigan. It is supported by a grant from the Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation (OPRE), Administration for Children and Families (ACF), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

National Organizations

Council for Exceptional Children (CEC)
The CEC is the largest international, professional organization dedicated to improving the educational success of individuals with disabilities, gifts, and talents. CEC advocates for governmental policies, sets professional standards, and provides professional development. It also advocates for individuals with exceptionalities, and helps professionals obtain conditions and resources needed for effective practice.

Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute (FPG)
FPG is one of the oldest and largest multidisciplinary centers devoted to the study of young children and their families. About 300 researchers, implementation and technical assistance specialists, staff, and students work on more than 75 projects. The project areas include developmental disabilities; early care and education; physical and social health; professional development, technical assistance, and implementation science; public policy and evaluation; and racial, ethnic, linguistic, cultural, and socioeconomic diversity. FPG's work crosses many disciplines from anthropology and audiology to psychiatry and public health.

National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) 
NAEYC is the world’s leading membership association working to ensure that all young children, birth through age 8, experience excellence in early childhood education. NAEYC's mission is to serve and act on behalf of the needs, rights, and well-being of all young children. Its primary focus is the provision of educational and developmental services and resources.

National Association for Family Child Care (NAFCC) 
NAFCC is a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting quality child care by strengthening the profession of family child care.

Society for Research in Child Development (SRCD)
SRCD is a multidisciplinary, nonprofit, professional association with a membership of approximately 5,500 researchers, practitioners, and human development professionals from more than 50 countries. It strives to promote research in the field of human development and to foster the exchange of information among scientists and other professionals. The Society also encourages applications of research findings.

T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® National Center  
The T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® National Center develops, implements, and sustains programs and strategies that result in a well-educated, fairly compensated, and stable early childhood workforce. The goal is to ensure the long-term success of our nation’s children in school and in life.

ZERO TO THREE: National Center for Infants, Toddlers, and Families  
ZERO TO THREE is a national, nonprofit organization. It provides parents, professionals, and policymakers the knowledge and know-how to nurture early development.

Last Reviewed: July 2014

Last Updated: July 10, 2015