Skip to main content

Our legacy


Our Association's roots are grounded in the National Association of Child Development Education, better known as CDEA which was incorporated in 1993 and received its non-profit status.  

Mrs. Ellen McKinley originally formed the organization to meet and support the needs of early education teachers, child care owners, directors, and administrators in the world of Christian education.  She was a fiery trailblazer who forged how Christian early education is represented and funded in the state of Florida. Fearlessly, she represented her faith and how faith-based child care should equally be represented and brought it to the table in legislative issues.  Her staunch belief that Christian child care was important to families and that it should be equally funded is her legacy that still remains today. Ms. Ellen was a true warrior for quality Christian child care and in 2019 she went to be with the Lord to receive her heavenly reward for all the work she accomplished in the 26 years she lead CDEA.  

Since this time, the organization’s goal has expanded to include many other services.  However, our first and foremost objective continues to be to provide the most effective, research-based professional development tools to the teacher, the child care owner, the director, and the administrator.   

CDEA, dba Association of Christian Early Educators • 141 5th St. NW • Winter Haven, FL 33881 • (904)573-8831
CDEA is a not-for-profit corporation under IRS Code 501c3. As such, all contributions are fully tax deductible.