The Gateways to Opportunity School-Age and Youth Development (SAYD) Credential Level 1 Training is part of Gateways to Opportunity, Illinois Professional Development System.  In addition, the SAYD Credential Level 1 is a stepping stone to the SAYD Credential Level 2.  For more information regarding SAYD Credentials 2-5 and all Gateways Credentials, please call 866-697-8278 or visit the website at www.ilgateways.com.

Thank you to all current and former contributors to this training.  The School-Age and Youth Development (SAYD) Credential Level 1 was created in 2010 to assist in demonstrating a statewide commitment to quality care.  The invaluable contributions in the creation and updates to this credential training have enabled the SAYD Credential Level 1 to remain an integral piece in the Gateways to Opportunity Professional Development System.

This training is Registry-approved and counts towards DCFS licensed program training hours for school-age and youth care.


At this time, Modules 1, 2a, 2b, 2c, 4a, and 4b are the only SAYD Credential Level 1 Training modules available online.  All other modules must be completed face-to-face.  Contact your local CCR&R for more information.

Participants will receive a brief introduction to child and youth development from ages 5–21. They will be introduced to the stages of development, along with the physical, cognitive, language, and social/emotional characteristics of development that will be used throughout the entire training series.

This course is Registry-approved and counts towards DCFS licensed program training hours (3 contact hours) for school-age and youth care.  

Contact Hours: 3 hours     Gateways Content Areas: HGD(2 hours), PPD(1 hour)     CDA Content Areas: 6(1 hours), 8(2 hours)

This session will explore the general characteristics and what to look for when work with children ages 5–12.  It will also discuss what to do and how to address children or youth who may have special needs.  Participants will also discuss protective factors and how to offer a safety net for children and youth who may be struggling.  The session will also introduce five goals that will help guide your approach when working with children and youth.

This Registry-approved training is brought to you by Gateways to Opportunity.  

Contact Hours: 3 hours     Gateways Content Areas: HGD(3 hours)     CDA Content Areas: 8(3 hours)

This session will discuss developmental characteristics of early adolescents and recognize that those in this stage may appear more as a school-age child in some areas, and an adolescent in others. Other topics will include risk taking, looking into the teenage brain, moral development, and “productive engagement”.

This Registry-approved training is brought to you by Gateways to Opportunity.  

Contact Hours: 3 hours     Gateways Content Areas: HGD(3 hours)     CDA Content Areas: 8(3 hours)

This session will focus on supporting the needs of the late adolescents as they transition into adulthood. Topics will include peer leadership, life skill development, supporting their growing independence, and developmentally appropriate practices for young adults ages 15–21.

This Registry-approved training is brought to you by Gateways to Opportunity.  

Contact Hours: 3 hours     Gateways Content Areas: HGD(3 hours)     CDA Content Areas: 8(3 hours)

Participants will review current licensing guidelines, health issues, and practices that ensure the well-being of school-age children and youth.  Module 4a will also explain how overall good health support child and youth development, and identify ways to support children and youth in making healthy choices.

This course is Registry-approved and counts towards DCFS licensed program training hours (3 contact hours) for school-age and youth care.  

Contact Hours: 3 hours     Gateways Content Areas: HGD(3 hours)     CDA Content Areas: 8(3 hours)

Welcome to the School-age and Youth Development Credential Level 1 Training - Module 4a: "Safety." Using the National Afterschool Association (NAA) Standards, this session is designed to look at a provider’s role and responsibilities when it comes to safety policies and procedures in working with school-age and youth.

This Registry-approved training is brought to you by Gateways to Opportunity.  

Contact Hours: 3 hours     Gateways Content Areas: HSW(1.5 hours), IRE(1.5 hour)     CDA Content Areas: 1(1.5 hours), 2(1.5 hours)