Early Childhood Learning Center Earns National Accreditation

By: Lisa S. Icenogle

May 18, 2018 | Casper College News

Photo of toddler playing with blocks.

The Early Childhood Learning Center at Casper College has earned accreditation from the National Association for the Education of Young Children, the world’s largest organization working on behalf of young children. The accreditation places the ECLC among the top in the nation by earning accreditation.

NAEYC Accreditation is a rigorous and transformative quality-improvement system that uses a set of 10 research-based standards to collaborate with early education programs to recognize and drive quality-improvement in high-quality early learning environments. “We are honored to receive this prestigious recognition,” said Donna Sonesen, director of the ECLC.

To earn NAEYC Accreditation, the ECLC went through an extensive self-study and quality-improvement process, followed by an on-site visit by NAEYC Assessors to verify and ensure that the program met each of the 10 program standards and hundreds of corresponding individual criteria. NAEYC-accredited programs are always prepared for unannounced quality-assurance visits during their accreditation term, which lasts for five years.

“Our program’s early childhood teaching professionals incorporate research on how children learn. They extend that learning through the children’s interests and a play-based environment. The children at the ECLC are constantly gaining knowledge through exploration, trial and error, practice, and through their peers and adults, supporting their brain development and connections to new learning,” said Sonesen.

“NAEYC-Accredited programs bring our definitions of excellence for early childhood education to life each day,” said Kristen Johnson, senior director of Early Learning Program Accreditation at NAEYC. “Earning NAEYC Accreditation makes the Early Childhood Learning Center an exemplar of good practice for families and the entire community.”

In the 30 years since NAEYC Accreditation was established, it has become a widely recognized sign of high-quality early childhood education. More than 7,000 programs are currently accredited by NAEYC – less than 10 percent of all child care centers, preschools, and kindergartens nationally achieve this recognition.

Media contact: Lisa S. Icenogle

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