Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Standards

Like any educational entity, here at Ivy League-West we must adhere to state standards. While I like the idea of having a standards system in place, it's not the end all to all. I like knowing that all preschools need to have a fire extinguisher, a first aid kit and an evacuation plan ready. I like knowing that the yard the children play in must be free of debris and hazards. However, holding up a "we meet state standards" sign does little to tell me if this is the school I want my children to be enrolled in. I would much prefer to know what that particular school or daycare standards are.

State standards after all are meant to maintain a "minimum". The least that you can do to be licensed is meet state standards. So at Ivy League-West we strive to meet our own high standards. Yes, state minimum standards are met, that's a given once we receive our license, but our own standards far exceed any minimums set by the state.

What we will be providing is a service to the children in our care, not just to their working parents. Our first standard will be to keep the children as our primary focus. We will maintain a balanced environment. Children will have stimulating experience but also time to relax and recoup. It is during this "downtime" that children process what they have learned. Our second standard is to maintain a healthy balance between activity and rest. We will engage the children in activities where they will naturally learn about themselves, about others and about their environment. Children learn best by doing, so will be "doing" a lot of cooking, cleaning up, nurturing and experimenting. By engaging the children in real life, they develop a feeling of worthiness and purpose. Our third standard is to make sure children have a place of value within their community. Children also learn by playing. During the day, the children will have plenty of time to use their imagination. Most of the toys at Ivy League-West are made of natural materials such as wood, wool, cotton and linen. Due to the high cost of such toys we will have limited toys that are made of plastic, although not our first choice, we feel that the few plastic toys that are available will enhance the child's learning and playing experience and is worth the exception being made. Our fourth standard is to protect the sanctity of childhood by allowing children to enjoy their childhood and by not expecting them to be mini adults.

Lastly but quite important to parents is that at Ivy League-West we recognize that you the parent are your child's expert. Our role is to be supportive and a resource to you should you need guidance or suggestions. We do not strive to be surrogate parents, nor do we strive for perfection and we certainly do not expect perfection from any parent or child. Our fifth standard is to provide an excellent service to children who deserve no less thereby relieving some stress and anxiety from the parents day.

Feel free to print these up and take them with you when you are looking for a daycare facility for your child. Let me know if you find another excellent daycare that adheres to standards higher than those minimums set by the state. I would love to be able to refer some parents on our waiting list to them.

Peace,

Alida