National Accreditation for Early Childhood Education Program
(Delaware and Chester Counties, PA • September 22, 2011)—The National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) recently accredited Delaware County Community College’s Early Childhood Education program (ECE).
The NAEYC Commission on Early Childhood Associate Degree Accreditation awards accreditation to associate degree programs that demonstrate evidence of meeting the Professional Preparation Standards. Accreditation provides a framework for self-study, external evaluation, and improvement in the quality of teacher preparation programs. NAEYC is the world's largest organization working on behalf of young children.
“NAEYC Accreditation continues to be the ‘gold standard’ in early childhood education,” stated the Dean of Public Services and Social Science Linda Collier. “We are proud to have earned the mark of quality from NAEYC and to be recognized for our commitment to reaching the highest educational and professional standards.”
What sets the accreditation of the College’s ECE program apart from other accredited schools is that we are only one of four colleges in Pennsylvania to offer the program online, with the exception of science labs, and field experience.
The accreditation process began with a self-study. Dean Collier and Assistant Professor Jean Allison, who presently teaches in the ECE program, wrote and analyzed the program based upon 12 criteria, including mission and role in community, conceptual framework, faculty educational background and experience, quality of teaching, program support and faculty support.
Writing the self-study gave the division an opportunity to assess the strengths and challenges of the program. The process took approximately two years. During that time, the program was revised to meet the new Pennsylvania Department of Education’s teaching certification guidelines. After submission of the self-study, a NAEYC accreditation team visited the College, observed classes, visited field placements with Dr. Ron Padula, Coordinator of ECE, toured the campus, and met with faculty, administrators, and students.
“The accreditation is a monumental accomplishment for the division, ECE students and all who participated in the extensive process,” said Collier. “With this accreditation, Delaware County Community College is doing its part to make certain that highly trained teachers will be ready for the children and families in our community.”
An Early Childhood Education degree prepares students for a career in the field, or to transfer to a four-year institution for completion of their baccalaureate degree. In addition, accredited associate degree programs provide better access to the profession and a stronger foundation for a burgeoning career.
For more information on the Early Childhood degree program, visit www.dccc.edu.
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