by Tiffany Jones, Center Director
Sidney, NE – Kid’s Korner-The Community Center for Early Child Development has been recognized by Nebraska Step Up to Quality for its commitment to quality childcare and education. Step Up to Quality programs go beyond state licensing requirements to better serve the needs of young children and their families and to prepare them for success in kindergarten and beyond.
With 90 percent of brain development occurring before age 5, early childcare and education is crucial to a child’s future success. Early learning builds the foundation for skills needed in school, work and life. Studies show that children who receive quality early childcare and education are more likely to show improved reading and math skills, attend college and earn higher wages.
While the majority of Nebraskans believe quality early childcare is very important, only 10 percent strongly agree that young children in our state are prepared to be successful when they begin kindergarten, according to a survey conducted by Buffett Early Childhood Institute and Gallup. Parents believe their local providers could do better when it comes to quality – only 15 percent are very satisfied with the quality of programs where they live.
“It is crucial that providers and educators across the state have a mutual understanding of what quality looks like in the childcare environment and that they feel supported on their path to quality,” said Lauri Cimino, director of Step Up to Quality. “Programs enrolled in Step Up to Quality have access to coaching and resources that enable any provider – big or small – to take quality to the next level.”
Step Up to Quality supports all types of early childcare and education programs, including licensed family childcare homes and childcare centers, Head Start and Early Head Start programs, public school-operated early childhood programs and licensed preschools.
We have always believed that our profession is one of the most challenging, as well as rewarding. You must build the foundation before you can build a house and we are foundation builders. High Quality Early Childhood Care is vital to a child’s success. Our States rating system; Step Up to Quality has given Kid’s Korner opportunities to learn, grow and become the best environment with educated providers to assist us in achieving our goals. Our daily work is not just a job, it’s a very important career and it is nice to be recognized at the local and state levels. By achieving the highest step of 5, we still have important work to do and look forward to continuing our passion in what it means to be a High-Quality Childcare Center.