Filed under: Child Care

What does NAEYC accredited mean?


When a daycare center boasts about NAEYC accreditation, it may sound official, but what does it really mean? The acronym stands for National Association for the Education of Young Children.

While NAEYC accreditation doesn’t necessarily equate to a superior level of care and arguably many fine daycare centers are without accreditation, going through the process of being NAEYC accredited can offer a daycare institution some added credibility and certainly distinguish itself with marked dedication.

From the NAEYC website:

“The program implements a curriculum that is consistent with its goals for children and promotes learning and development in each of the following areas: social, emotional, physical, language, and cognitive.”

In order for a facility to become NAEYC accredited, they must complete compliance in the following areas (from the NAEYC website brochure):

1. Promote positive relationships for all children and adults to encourage each child’s sense of individual worth.

2. Implement a curriculum that fosters all areas of child development: cognitive, emotional, language, physical,
and social.

3. Use developmentally, culturally, and linguistically appropriate and effective teaching approaches.

4. Provide ongoing assessments of a child’s learning and development and communicate the child’s progress to the family.

5. Promote the nutrition and health of children and protect children and staff from injury and illness.

6. Employ a teaching staff that has the educational qualifications, knowledge, and professional commitment
necessary to promote children’s learning and development and to support families’ diverse needs and interests.

7. Establish and maintain collaborative relationships with each child’s family.

8. Establish relationships with and use the resources of the community to support the achievement of program goals.

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9. Provide a safe and healthy physical environment.

10. Implement strong personnel, fiscal, and program management policies so that all children, families, and staff have high-quality experiences.

The process is earned in 4 steps, including an application process, site visits, health and safety standard compliance and licensing.

For parents that need a quality care litmus test, NAEYC accreditation can certainly set it apart from non-NAEYC centers with commitment on the part of the daycare center to assure parents of their level of care.

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