p-3 center logo

The P-3 Leadership Certificate Program provides elementary and early learning leaders with skills and knowledge to lead cross-system improvements and to implement instructional reforms that benefit our youngest learners, preschool through 3rd grade. This 11-month fully online, executive-style program is for working administrators who want to engage in intentional and collaborative learning to deepen their understanding of child development, school leadership, and learning opportunities that dismantle historic inequities.

Our approach at the University of Colorado Denver is to support working professionals in an engaging, blended format of monthly modules completed primarily through asynchronous work. The Program also provides bi-monthly synchronous sessions with leading researchers and practitioner-experts engaged in innovative P-3 work.


  • Develop strong leadership skills and knowledge to ensure a high-quality continuum of learning for students across early learning and the early grades
  • Learn effective strategies to link and align elementary schools with community-based early care and education (ECE) programs
  • Grow abilities to effectively implement current reforms (e.g., school improvement plans, pre-K expansion, teacher evaluations, transitions to kindergarten) in ways that benefit young children and education professionals
  • Advance effective strategies to involve families, teachers, and communities in closing achievement gaps early

Why Enroll

While school readiness and ready schools were priorities before the pandemic, they have become even more important as school districts, early care and education (ECE) programs, state agencies, and other stakeholders grapple with the inequitable opportunities provided to our youngest learners. Now is an opportune time for school leaders to re-imagine and invest deeply in their skills and knowledge to design school cultures and collaborative teamwork, informed by research, that will close early achievement gaps and support young learners.

Who Should Participate

  • Elementary school principals
  • School district administrators
  • School board members
  • Leaders in early care and education (ECE)
  • Teams that include leaders from both ECE and PreK-12 are strongly encouraged to enroll together.

The Details

June 2022 - April 2023

Time Commitment

10-12 hours of asynchronous + 3 hours of synchronous learning per module.

Application Deadline

Applications for the 2022-2023 Program are closed.

Start Date

June 1, 2022

Program Length

11 months with month-long breaks in September and January


Fully online with synchronous and asynchronous learning.

(additional conversion costs required)

Program may be converted to up to nine CU Denver Academic Credits or 13.5 CEUs

Program Cost
(Costs of materials (~$100) not included)


$2,300 for members of NAESP