Baylor University Piper Center for Family Studies and Child Development Earns National NAEYC Accreditation, Making It One of the Top in the Nation

May 12, 2011

Piper Center for Family Studies and Child Development located in Waco has earned accreditation from the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) - the nation's leading organization of early childhood professionals.

The center is the only child care center in McLennan County to have earned the accreditation.

"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 Barbara Crosby, Director of Baylor University Piper Center for Family Studies and Child Development. "NAEYC Accreditation lets families in our community know that children in our program are getting the best care and early learning experiences possible.

"We are a lab school for the department of family and consumer sciences at Baylor," she said. "We are modeling and teaching university students best practices in early childhood education. It is imperative that we are doing what is best for children since we model for the students. We believe in inclusion of all children into our center. Another aspect of our program is to be available to mentor in our community to help all early care and education professionals to learn and provide quality early childhood education."

To earn NAEYC Accreditation, Piper 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 10 program standards. NAEYC-accredited programs are also subject to unannounced visits during their accreditation, which lasts for five years.

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 programs.

"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 Piper Center for Family Studies and Child Development at Baylor University 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.

The NAEYC Accreditation system was created to set professional standards for early childhood education, and to help families identify high-quality preschools, child care centers and other early education programs. To earn NAEYC Accreditation, a program must meet each of the ten NAEYC Early Childhood Program Standards.

The center serves 60 children and was 20 staffers, with 16 work-study students each semester.

For more information about Piper, contact: Barbara Crosby,(254) 710-4373

For more information about NAEYC Accreditation, visit www.naeyc.org/academy.

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