CDSA values high quality programming for both school-age and pre-kindergarteners. As such we decided in 2008 that our Pre-Kindergarten programs should become accredited. We researched a variety of accrediting agencies for our Pre-Kindergarten programs and determined that NAEYC would be our best choice. NAEYC has played an integral role in accrediting programs since 1985.
With the support of Child Care Resources Champions for Children grant, our dedicated staff, and by the support of our children and families we have begun the accreditation process. The accreditation process can take up to 3 years to complete. The process begins with a self-assessment period. Programs analyze their mission and vision; curriculum development, staff education, and agency best practices as they relate to the direct care of Pre-Kindergarten children and families in their program. Once the program has completed the self assessment period the information is taken and compared to how it meets national accreditation standards and criteria. The program fine tunes a variety of aspects of the programs.
Once fine-tuning is completed the program submits a Candidacy Application to NAEYC. CDSA will submit 6 Candidacy Applications; one for each of the Pre-Kindergarten Programs. The application provides information unique to each Pre-Kindergarten program. Once the application is submitted and approved a NAEYC assessor will contact each program. The program will receive a 3 month window in which the assessor will visit the program. The assessor will do a thorough evaluation of the program. The evaluation can take up to 6 hours to complete. Once the evaluation is complete the assessor will contact the agency within 3 months and provide notification as to their accreditation status.
NAEYC stands for the National Association for the Education of Young Children. NAEYC was established in 1926 and has become one of the world’s largest organizations working to support children ages birth through eight, families, and educators. NAEYC provides the education industry information on best practices in Early Childhood Education. In addition to the abundance of information and resources provided by NAEYC they also accredit birth through pre-k programs.
For more information on NAEYC and National Accreditation please visit www.naeyc.org