|The Fort McCoy Child Development Center (CDC) earned
its five-year reaccreditation from the National Association for the
Education of Young Children (NAEYC). This marks 20 years of attaining
and maintaining accreditation since the CDC originally was accredited in
1992. NAEYC is recognized as one of the nation’s leading organization of
early childhood professionals.
Erin Wazelle assists children in the 3-5 year old program at the
Fort McCoy Child Development Center. The facility recently
earned a five-year reaccreditation.
(Photo by Rob Schuette )
“We’re proud to have earned the mark of quality from NAEYC, and to be
recognized for our commitment to reaching the highest professional
standards,” said Jan Fink, Fort McCoy Child, Youth & School (CYS)
Services coordinator. “NAEYC Accreditation lets Families in our
community know that children in our program are getting the best care
and early learning experiences possible.”
Fort McCoy, along with other Military CDCs, is required to be certified
to operate by the Department of Defense as well as being nationally
accredited by an outside professional early childhood accrediting agency
to ensure it offers quality child care. Fink said having the designation
demonstrates the care and services Fort McCoy Families receive and
ensures that wherever military Families are stationed, consistent
quality child care is available.
Chelsey Smith, Fort McCoy CDC director, said the entire CDC staff takes
pride in the program achieving reaccreditation and wants to offer
Families in the community the best-possible child care service. The
reaccreditation is valid for five years, from 2012-2017.
“This ensures parents are bringing their children to a high-quality
program and facility,” Smith said. “It takes a lot of work to get
reaccredited. I’m proud the staff put in the work, and the recognition
shows we offer quality care.”
To earn NAEYC Accreditation, the Fort McCoy CDC went through an
extensive self-study process, measuring the program and its services
against the 10 NAEYC Early Childhood Program Standards and more than 400
related Accreditation Criteria. The program received NAEYC Accreditation
after an on-site visit by NAEYC assessors to ensure that the program
meets each of the program standards. NAEYC-accredited programs also are
subject to unannounced visits during their
The installation was judged in 10 categories: relationships, curriculum,
teaching, assessment of child progress, health, teachers, facilities,
community relationships, physical environment and leadership and
management. Fink said the CDC met standards in all categories and
exceeded 100 percent in seven categories.
“Exceeding 100 percent in a category means you exceed the required
standards for that category by also implementing emerging best practices
that are goals to attain but not yet a requirement.” Fink said. “We’re
always focused on continuous improvement of our program and meeting any
future standards that may occur.”
In the 25 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 —
approximately 8 percent of all preschools and other early childhood
“The NAEYC Accreditation system raises the bar for child care centers
and other early childhood programs,” said Jerlean E. Daniel, Ph.D,
executive director of NAEYC. “Having earned NAEYC Accreditation is a
sign that the Fort McCoy CDC is a leader in a national effort to invest
in high-quality early childhood education.”
The NAEYC Accreditation system has set voluntary professional standards
for programs for young children since 1985.
In September 2006, the association revised program standards and
criteria to introduce a new level of quality, accountability, and
service for parents and children in child care programs. The new
standards today reflect the latest research and best practices in early
childhood education and development.
NAEYC is committed to utilizing the newest studies and analysis on
positive child outcomes to ensure young children continue receiving the
highest-quality care and education possible.
For more information about NAEYC Accreditation, visit
(Information from a news release submitted by the National
Association for the Education of Young Children is included in this