Staff learned last month the Child Development Centre received accreditation. “This accreditation is evidence that our program is meeting standards for high quality child care,” said Melanie Pelchat, supervisor of the Child Development Centre on the Vermilion campus.
To become accredited, Child Development Centre staff submitted parent survey results, detailed information on programming, and a quality enhancement plan outlining goals for the next three years. Among the AELCS standards for accreditation are providing open-ended play experiences, an open door policy for family, staff must have early childhood education training, and the centre promotes literacy. All of these standards were already in place at the Child Development Centre, said Pelchat.
The final stage of accreditation took place in late June when staff from AELCS spent two days at the Child Development Centre observing programming and talking with staff, children and parents. The entire process took more than a year.
The Child Development Centre is the fourth accredited child care program in east central Alberta. While program licensing is required by law, accreditation is voluntary. As an accredited service, the Child Development Centre receives supplemental funding from Alberta Children’s Services for staff wages, program support, and staff development and training. The accreditation period is for three years after which time the centre must apply for re-accreditation.
“The accreditation process has been a positive experience for our program. We put a lot of work into it so we were relieved when we became accredited. We are also very proud that we are recognized as offering a high quality program for children - that means a lot to us,” said Pelchat.
The Child Development Centre is licensed for children ages 19 months and up. All 30 spots are currently filled. Four full-time staff members work in the Child Development Centre which is open weekdays from 7:45 am to 5:30 pm. It also serves as a practicum environment for students in Lakeland’s early learning and childhood certificate and diploma programs. The Child Development Centre is closed in July and August.
Supervisor, Child Development Centre
780 853 8531
Established in 1913, Lakeland College has campuses in Vermilion and Lloydminster and a learning centre in Strathcona County. The college offers full-time, part-time and continuing education programs in environmental sciences, tourism, fire and emergency services, health and human services, trades and technology, business, academic upgrading, university studies, interior design technology, agricultural sciences and performing arts. For details visit www.lakelandcollege.ca