The Village Children’s Learning Center in Hinesville recently earned accreditation from the National Association for the Education of Young Children, a national organization of early childhood professionals.
“We’re proud to have earned the mark of quality from NAEYC and to be recognized for our commitment to reaching the highest professional standards,” said Michael Terry, CEO of The Village Children’s Center Inc. “NAEYC accreditation lets families in our community know that children in our program are getting the best care and early learning experiences possible.”
According to Director Fay Lee Terry, the center began pursuing high-quality recognition in 2008 with Georgia’s Standard of Care after being selected as an Army Childcare in Your Neighborhood center, attaining Center of Recognition status in 2009.
Subsequently, they forged ahead for two years in pursuit of NAEYC accreditation. The Village administrators received the NAEYC decision report Sept. 12. The staff, children, family members and dignitaries were surprised with a red carpet celebration for earning the mark of distinction for high-quality care.
Learning center Assistant Director Catherine Nettles said employees were elated about the news.
“Our staff was committed and worked very hard to earn this prestigious recognition,” she said.
To earn NAEYC accreditation, The Village went through a self-study process, measuring the program and its services against the 10 NAEYC early-childhood program standards — relationships, curriculum, teaching, assessment, health, teachers, families, community relationships, physical environment and leadership and management — and more than 400 related accreditation criteria.
The process requires collaboration with families, homes, organizations and community representatives in addition to the operations of the center.
To date, the center employs 27 employees and has served the community, both civilian and military, for more than 12 years. All staff associated with classroom activities have attained a minimum of 12 college credits in early-childhood education or hold early-childhood education credentials or degrees.
The program received accreditation after an on-site visit by NAEYC assessors to ensure that the program meets each of the 10 program standards. NAEYC-accredited programs also are subject to unannounced visits during their accreditation, which lasts for five years.
The learning center is at 803 Frank Cochran Drive.