Early childhood educators (ECE) on the island of Kauai currently have one localized option for higher education in the field of ECE, a 2-year Associate of Science degree in Early Childhood Education from the University of Hawaii system’s Kauai Community College. The State of Hawaii’s Executive Office on Early Learning (EOEL) is looking to set the quality benchmark for ECE teachers at a Bachelor’s degree with specialized training in pre-kindergarten plus 15 hours of professional development training annually. Gaining access to high quality in-person professional development on Kauai is an ongoing challenge. To assess the growing need for professional development on Kauai, a needs assessment was conducted using Google forms to explore the use of online resources for professional development by early childhood practitioners on Kauai currently working with children birth to 5 years old. All participants in this needs assessment survey were primarily solicited by email to gauge the use of online modes for participation and communication within the ECE professional community. This effort resulted in 13 responses to the needs assessment survey and indicated a willingness to use online resources for professional development.
Berna Souza, University of Hawaii at Manoa, Kekaha, Kauai, Hawaii, USA