Today’s post is written by Carolyn Dederer, Executive Director of the Day Nursery Association of Indianapolis.
Last week I attended the Indiana Association for the Education of Young Children’s semi-annual Public Policy Academy along with early education advocates from all over Indiana. We met courtesy of the wonders of webinar teleconferencing and our guest speaker was Jerlean E. Daniel, Ph.D, newly appointed Executive Director of the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC). Dr. Daniel speaking from Alexandria, Va, reported NAEYC’s standards for programs and professional development have been aligned with its policy stances in order to lead to improvements in children’s development and learning.
Here in Indiana, the new Paths to Quality initiative is using these standards to measure individual programs. Did you know that 1,901 or 51.9% of eligible providers are already enrolled? To date, 148 of these programs have achieved a “4”, the highest, NAEYC accredited level. The others are diligently working their way up the scale. Benchmarks include health and safety standards, classroom learning environments, and planned curriculum.