Originally created 08/11/05

Fort Gordon's child center gets accreditation

Fort Gordon's Child Development Center received good news recently when officials learned the center had received accreditation from the National Association for the Education of Young Children.

Mary Crowder, the director of children and youth services, called the accreditation "a big accomplishment."

The accreditation process takes 18 months.

"The last time it was accredited was in 1998," she said.

That accreditation expired in 2001. The newest accreditation will last a little longer, expiring in 2010.

Among the areas evaluated in the process are safety, sanitation standards, teacher credentials, teacher-to-child ratio and curriculum. Also, teachers and parents fill out evaluation forms.

Officials also grade the facility on health issues, administration, the interaction between teachers and families, and staffing issues.

Families are asked questions ranging from fees to how well the teachers follow the goals of the family.

One of the final items in the process is a two-day visit. Accreditation officials visited Fort Gordon in April and reviewed a mountain of paperwork, Ms. Crowder said.

"There is a three-page list of documents they need," she said.

Among them are documents related to the building. Paperwork must document it as being lead paint and asbestos free. Also, center officials were required to provide results of all safety and sanitation inspections.

During the visit, the accreditation officials spent time in each of the classrooms - from the infants' rooms through prekindergarten.

The paperwork, including comments from the officials' visit, was sent to a 12-member board, which determined the accreditation.


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