What is quality childcare?
An answer, in the form of 10 standards, has been formed by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC), which is the largest organization of early childhood professionals in the world. A separate tab will open for each link below to take you to the exact definitions for each standard listed on the NAEYC’s website. Below these links there is a description of how Avalon measures up to each standard.
NAEYC Quality Childcare Standards
Standard 1: Relationships
This standard is our top concern for quality care: loving relationships. Loving affection and care, as if we were extended family, is provided to your child. This is why small peer groups, a family-style environment, and small teacher to student ratio is important. We also want your whole family to feel welcome here. Between the children, friendships are formed with peers and conflict resolution is learned. Respect for your child’s rights as an individual are always present.
Standard 2: Curriculum
Our curriculum is based on developmentally-appropriate learning goals that also allow for child-directed exploration of their personal interests. We follow the State of California’s preschool learning objectives to prepare children for Kindergarten along with social-emotional learning, physical education, language, and individual skill set development. In addition to monthly learning themes and adapted Montessori, Waldorf, and Reggio Emilia programs, children are provided with an intellectually stimulating environment and materials that are play-based.
Standard 3: Teaching
We use an “all for one” approach to curate the best methods from many different educational philosophies for taking care of your child’s individual needs and learning styles. Your child’s interests and skills will be nurtured along with a stimulating environment that challenges growth. Teaching is our passion, so we are dedicated to each child’s individual successes and to help them become part of a team within their peer group. A “whole” child model for teaching includes social, emotional, cultural, and personal development, which will be encouraged in tandem with academic goals.
Standard 4: Assessments
Upon enrollment, a Family-School (aka Parent-Teacher) conference is scheduled after 60-days of attendance to discuss personal and developmental goals for your child. Conferences and formal assessments are done semi-annually, every six months thereafter. Assessments are gathered continuously through work samples and teacher observations that are gathered into a digital authentic assessment portfolio organized by DRDP-Preschool categories.
Standard 5: Health
Besides a highly nutritious food program, we encourage daily physical activity outdoors multiple times throughout the day. Children take turns in leadership roles to assist with our healthy practices such as hand-washing and sanitary practices (covering a cough in an elbow for example). Our teachers and assistants are trained and certified (regularly) in pediatric First Aid, CPR, AED, and Preventative Health practices. Our Illness Policy clearly outlines how we manage both minor and major illnesses. Nap time is provided to give your little one much needed rest and relaxation in a clean and comfortable environment.
Standard 6: Staff Competencies, Preparation, and Support
Our staff is professionally trained and experienced in infant and child development, early childhood education, nutrition and preventative health and safety, pediatric and adult first aid and CPR/AED, child abuse prevention, pesticide management (cleaning/disinfecting/sanitizing), and receives support through professional membership and continuing education. Avalon’s director, Charissa Kerr, also holds a child development Master Teacher level permit by the State of California’s Commission on Teacher Credentialing.
Standard 7: Families
We love our families! Your involvement with us is important and cherished, so we create a welcoming environment to collaborate with you for your child’s academics and defer to your expertise for your child’s personal needs. Regular communication in person and in the form of newsletters, announcements, assessments, and copies of our curriculum are provided so that you are always aware of what is taking place. We encourage your participation and offer many opportunities to take part in your child’s learning. Your family’s needs and values are respected and encouraged with an open-door policy to talk about any issues, concerns, or thoughts you may need to communicate with us.
Standard 8: Community Relationships
Our program exemplifies community connections in both academic and extracurricular activities! Family Field Trips are inspired by the learning objectives each month and take us to museums, festivals, and performances. Museums and local history points-of-interest are also used as cultural resources for our families. The children love to browse through our semi-monthly “haul” of library books and enjoy our annual visit from firefighters, so we work hard to cultivate strong relationships with our local libraries and fire stations.
Standard 9: Physical Environment
To receive a license, a facility must pass an inspection for health, safety, and an environment that will be appropriate for the child’s enjoyment and development. Toys, furniture, materials, and the site must all be in good condition. Annual, unannounced inspections take place to ensure these standards are maintained and a public record is kept of any violations. Our facility maintains all of these standards to the utmost quality. Children are supervised by sight and sound at all times.
- Our facility license number is 503911379
Standard 10: Leadership and Management
We have the specialized courses in both childhood education and child development to properly manage quality operations and programs. As administrator, my qualifications include a university degree, specialized early child education courses, training in child development and health practices, teaching and student counseling experience, and supervisory experience. I maintain strict ethical practices and adhere to all state and federal regulations and policies for providing a quality environment for children, families, and caretakers.
If you have any specific questions or wish to discuss a standard further, please feel free to contact us by phone or email.