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National Association of the Education of Young Children (NAEYC)

WCC Children's Center was recently granted accreditation by the National Association of the Education of Young Children (NAEYC). This prestigious recognition has been achieved by approximately 7% of early childhood programs nationwide - some 6,215 programs as of May 1999, serving 574,402 children. WCC is one of four Michigan community college children's centers that are accredited. Other accredited centers are Grand Rapids, Mott and Schoolcraft Community Colleges.

NAEYC accreditation is a rigorous, voluntary process by which early childhood programs demonstrate that they meet national standards of excellence. Child care centers, preschools, kindergartens, and before and after school programs are eligible to seek NAEYC accreditation. Approximately 12,000 program are engages in seeking national accreditation.

Programs seeking accreditation undergo an intensive self-study, collecting information from parents, teacher, administrators, and classroom observations. They receive an on-site visit, conducted by early childhood professionals especially trained by NAEYC, to validate their self-study results. All of this information is independently reviewed by a team of national experts who grant or defer accreditation. When awarded, accreditation is valid for three years

The hear of NAEYC Accreditation focuses on child's experience. The process carefully considers all aspects of a program including health and safety, staffing, staff qualifications and physical environment. The greatest emphasis is on the children's relationships with the staff and how the program helps each child grow and learn intellectually, physically, socially and emotionally. Children's' language and social skills especially benefit from the better quality found NAEYC-accredited programs. These are critical areas for children's success in school as well as in life.

NAEYC accreditation began in 1985, with the first program accredited in 1986. NAEYC is the nation's oldest and largest organization of early childhood professionals dedicated to improvement of quality early childhood education. NAEYC established accreditation in response to the growing number of American children spending large amounts of time in group settings away from home, and the uneven and often inadequate consumer protection afforded by state licensing of child care facilities.

The WCC Children's Center is located in the family Education Building and serves approximately 150 children each semester. These children range in age from 18 months through 5 years of age during the day and 18 months through 7 years at night. Our hours of service are from 7:30 a.m. until 10:00 p.m. Monday through Thursday and Friday 7:30 a.m. until 5:30 p.m.

We now proudly display NAEYC torch, which is the sign of accreditation. Parents who looks for the torch when choosing child care or early education programs for their children will find programs which have made a commitment to excellence for young children and families.

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