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For Immediate Release:
April 26, 2005
NAEYC Board Approves New Standards for Early Childhood Programs
(Washington, D.C.) — The National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) Governing Board has approved new NAEYC Early Childhood Program Standards. The 10 standards are based on research and professional experience, and outline what NAEYC believes all programs - including child care centers, preschools, Head Start programs, and kindergartens - should provide to nurture the learning and development of young children.
The new NAEYC Early Childhood Program Standards and related Accreditation Performance Criteria will serve as the foundation of NAEYC's early childhood program accreditation system. NAEYC Accreditation is widely recognized by parents, programs, policymakers and others as a sign of high quality in early childhood education programs. Currently, there are more than 10,000 NAEYC-accredited programs around the country, serving more than 850,000 young children and their families. The new standards are part of a major reinvention of NAEYC's accreditation system, which will increase the reliability and accountability of NAEYC Accreditation, and promote higher program quality.
"These stanards describe early childhood programs that consistently promote positive learning and developmental outcomes for young children," said Mark Ginsberg, Ph.D., Executive Director of NAEYC. "We believe all programs should meet these standards, because all young children should have access to high-quality early education programs. The new standards and criteria are a major step forward, not only for NAEYC Accreditation, but for the entire early childhood profession, and for all the young children and families we serve."
The new standards are divided into four areas, focusing primarily on the learning and development of children but also on teaching staff, family and community partnerships, and leadership and administration.
In the new NAEYC early childhood program accreditation system—which will be fully operational in 2006 - programs will need to meet all 10 NAEYC Early Childhood Program Standards to earn NAEYC Accreditation. A program will show that it meets each standard by successfully performing a majority of the criteria related to that standard. A complete list of the standards and criteria is available online.
Many public policies at the federal, state and local levels already recognize the value of NAEYC Accreditation in their early childhood systems. The new NAEYC Early Childhood Program Standards will help leverage higher program quality and better financing so that children have positive outcomes, and programs can sustain high-quality services.
NAEYC Accreditation was created in 1985 as a national, voluntary system to evaluate the quality of early childhood education programs, and support programs in their improvement efforts. As part of the reinvention process, the NAEYC Governing Board appointed a Commission on NAEYC Early Childhood Program Standards and Accreditation Criteria. The commission drafted the 10 standards, and worked with teams of educators, administrators and researchers to develop more than 400 criteria related to the standards. The new standards and criteria were approved by the NAEYC Governing Board earlier this month.
Founded in 1926, the National Association for the Education of Young Children has nearly 90,000 members worldwide. The association is the largest and most influential advocate for early care and education in the
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Founded in 1926, the National Association for the Education of Young Children is the largest and most influential advocate for high-quality early care and education in the United States.