Moving Up and celebrating NAEYC in DC

BCC’s Early Learning Program recognizes participants, new accreditation

Backpacks5At some point, all children are asked what they want to be when they grow up.

So when BCC President and CEO Laurie Anne Spagnola heard so many of the children participating in BCC’s Early Learning Program identify as future police and firefighters, she marched along to the beat.

“All of us adults are going to be in good hands when we get older with all these first responders around us,” Spagnola said July during BCC’s Moving Up ceremony July 29 in the District of Columbia.

The presentation included celebration for the Jellyfish, a group of 16 children three years old and under, and the Whales, 16 children three years old and over. Over 100 parents, friends and other family members packed the classroom for the two celebrations.

Mayra Ramirez, lead teacher for the Jellyfish, and Juliet Price, lead teacher for the Whales, were lauded for their efforts through the year.

All participants in the ceremonies received a backpack with stickers, crayons, bubbles and either a book to read or a book to color, courtesy of Bethany UMC in Ellicott City and coordinated by Rev. Dr. Stacey Nickerson.

Krystina Johnson, Asst. Program Director, presented certificates to the children. Because the DC operation has a significant waitlist, there’s no drop-off expected from the program’s current enrollment of 72 participants.

“We’re fortunate to enjoy the luxury of a waitlist, but it speaks to the outstanding job our staff does in creating value in attending Board of Child Care’s ELP for the children and parents we serve,” Johnson said.

The breakdown of DC enrollees include 57 percent from private pay and 43 percent from subsidy vouches from the Dept. of Health and Human Services.

The DC staff also celebrated accreditation from the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) – the nation’s leading organization of early childhood centers – July 28. A celebration dinner was held for staff. The NAEYC certificate, conferred June 6, 2016, is valid through July 1, 2021.

BCC earned outstanding scores within the 10 NAEYC program standards the ELP was judged and evaluated upon. NAEYC awarded BCC 100 percent marks in five categories, 96 percent or better in two other standards, giving BCC a mean score of 95.8.