I attended the 2017 annual California Association for the Education of Young Children (CAEYC) Conference & Expo held in Ontario, CA from March 23 – 26, 2017. CAEYC is a California chapter of the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC), with a membership of approximately 100,000 members. CAEYC has over 5,000 members.
WHY ACCREDITATION MATTERS
This year I conducted a workshop, Why Accreditation Matters?, which was an informative session. The workshop was a collaborative work among NAEYC, De Anza College, Kaiser Permanente Child Center, and the CAEYC Accreditation Committee. A total of 25 people attended the workshop, all of whom were highly engaged throughout the session.
As a CAEYC Accreditation Committee chair, I shared the benefits and procedures of accreditation, resources including supporting systems, and success stories of both the early learning and higher education programs. Some of the questions addressed were: Who should and can apply? Why did you seek accreditation? What is your area of greatest improvement since starting the process? How does NAEYC support the program improvement during the process? If a school experiences failure, then how does NAEYC support them to become accredited? What does the accreditation process look like? What is the hardest and easiest part of the process? And, lastly, what is some advice you would give to schools just starting the accreditation process?
IN PURSUIT OF NAEYC ACCREDITATION
During the presentation and preparation of the presentation, I worked closely with two representatives of NAEYC. Since Vanguard University’s Early Childhood Education (ECE) program is starting to seek NAEYC accreditation, building relationships with key personnel was valuable. After the presentation, CAEYC hosted a reception to celebrate the schools that had received NAEYC accreditation. I attended the CAEYC Board meeting and was re-elected as an Accreditation Committee Chair.
I had several opportunities to represent Vanguard’s ECE program, build a recruitment network and become more informed on the NAEYC Accreditation process. Dinner with the Child Development program chair of Cerritos College turned into a brainstorming session on ways we could support Cerritos College Child Development students transfer to Vanguard University.