WHAT IS ACCREDITATION?
Accreditation is used by organizations and institutions to
assure the quality of programs or services. Hospitals become accredited to
give patients a level of security knowing that health and safety practices
are followed. Accredited colleges and universities meet eligibility
standards and maintain required elements providing quality
education. Accreditation systems are usually voluntary and created to
verify the quality of the services provided.
NAFCC is the only national accreditation system for family child care
providers. This system was developed with input from hundreds of providers,
parents, and early care and education experts to create a definition of
quality for family child care programs across the country.
Each family child care program goes through the in depth accreditation
process: requiring training, health assessments, criminal background checks,
as well as an observation verifying compliance with the Quality Standards
for NAFCC Accreditation
are made individually based on information gathered from an observer, the
provider, and the parents of the children in the program.
WHAT IS NAFCC ACCREDITATION?
- For Children: NAFCC Accreditation is an
indicator that family child care homes offer safe, inviting spaces and
warm, nurturing care complete with educational activities designed to meet
the needs and interests of all children while promoting individual
- For Parents: NAFCC Accreditation is an indicator
that parents can use to help identify responsive, stimulating child care.
Parents can expect that their children are growing and learning in an
environment that is responsive to their individual needs.
- For Employers: NAFCC Accreditation is an
indicator that family child care homes offer a stable, high-quality child
care program which research has shown directly improves employee
attendance, morale, and productivity.
- For Communities: NAFCC Accreditation is an
indicator that quality family child care providers are available to help
to make communities attractive to families, signaling that children are
well cared for and educated during their early years and before and after
NAFCC developed its first accreditation system in 1988.
Ten years later, there were NAFCC-accredited family child care providers in
44 states and the District of Columbia. A 1995 study of accredited providers
conducted by the Families and Work Institute confirmed that accreditation
increases providers' professionalism and self-esteem, improves quality of
care, and develops leadership skills. In communities that support family
child care, accredited providers find opportunities for further professional
development such as becoming a mentor to other providers, an Observer for
NAFCC, or a trainer.
In 1994, NAFCC began a major initiative to develop a new accreditation
system for family child care. Instead of modifying existing approaches to
assessing quality, NAFCC asked the Family Child Care Project at Wheelock
College to create a new accreditation "from scratch." The goal was to
recognize the special nature of high quality in this special form of child
care. The Quality Standards for the new NAFCC Accreditation system were
developed through a two-year, consensus-building process that included
hundreds of providers, parents, resource and referral staff members, and
other early childhood experts.
In 1998, the new system was piloted in five communities: Boston,
Massachusetts; Fayetteville, Arkansas; Chicago, Illinois; Santa Cruz,
California; and Randolph Air Force Base, San Antonio, Texas. The new NAFCC
accreditation began national operation in 1999.
BASIC ACCREDITATION ELIGIBILITY
- Offer care and education to children in a home,
spending at least 80% of the time with the children
- Provide care for minimum of 15 hours per week
- Be at least 21 years old
- Have a high school diploma or GED
- Have at least 18 months experience in FCC, regulated at
the highest level available in the state
- Complete background screening and documentation
- Have a minimum of 3 children enrolled and present
during the observation. At least one child must live outside of the child
Contact us for more information about
- Postal address
332 Lake Avenue South
Spicer, Minnesota 56288
- Electronic mail
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