The Community Partnership's early care and education program recently announced that Sue Seifart, owner and director of Rosey Cozy Cottage in Rolla, achieved accreditation from the National Association for Family Child Care (NAFCC).
NAFCC is a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting quality child care by strengthening the profession of family child care.
According to Karen Daily, early care and education specialist at The Community Partnership, NAFCC accreditation means that Rosey Cozy Cottage has demonstrated that it offers a safe, inviting, material-rich space, with warm, nurturing care complete with developmentally appropriate educational activities designed to meet the needs and interests of each and every child.
"The process of earning accreditation is long and strenuous," explained Daily. "It requires the child care provider complete a comprehensive study and evaluation using the quality standards for NAFCC accreditation and to make quality improvements to their program. This study and improvement process often takes years to complete.
“After determining the provider's eligibility, an NAFCC-trained observer is assigned to visit the program and conduct an observation,” Daily added. “The observation results and provider study documentation are reviewed by a panel who makes the decision to award accreditation status."
Seifart said The Community Partnership's early care and education program helped with training and education, as well as obtaining the high quality educational materials and equipment needed to achieve accreditation.
"With the help of the Partnership, we've been driven to do more and go beyond what the current standards are so we can provide higher quality care," she said. "We know that higher quality care has a direct connection to how prepared a child is for kindergarten. It gives the child a better start."
Seifart said that she would not have pursued this accreditation process without the help of Daily and The Community Partnership.
"I couldn't have done it without the Partnership's support and encouragement," Seifart said. "Karen made the whole process clearer and more organized, and we did it step-by-step.
“The Community Partnership understands how important that time between birth and the first day of kindergarten is for children.
“We have an opportunity as child care providers to make that time valuable and meaningful for a child. Higher quality care impacts so much later in life,” she said.
Daily said that Seifart's application of new learning techniques and the addition of more high quality materials, equipment and toys to her program has made a big difference.
"Sue's commitment to providing quality child care is so obvious," said Daily. "She has really worked hard to achieve this goal of accreditation, and the families she serves and the community will benefit from this accomplishment."
According to Daily, only 32 other child care providers in the state of Missouri have attained NAFCC accreditation.
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