With top scores in every category, Early Learning Campus, the early child development center that is part of the University of Louisville College of Education and Human Development, has been re-accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children.
Accreditation by the NAEYC is awarded to early childhood education programs that demonstrate excellence in teaching, relationship-building, curriculum, health, safety and other areas.
Located on Belknap Campus, ELC is for children 6 weeks to 5 years of age and provides child development services for UofL faculty, staff and students, as well as residents of the nearby Family Scholar House and the Old Louisville neighborhood. Every weekday, the little ones come through the doors and are transformed into Turtles, Rainbow Fish, Sweet Peas, Travelers, Jazzy Jungles or Tadpoles. Their days are filled with friends and toys, games and healthy snacks, naps and outside playtime.
“Early childhood education and experiences have tremendous impact on children’s future academic success, with studies showing effects well into high school,” said Jill Jacobi-Vessels, director of ELC. “The ELC engaged in the rigorous NAEYC accreditation process because we strongly believe that our profession is critical to the well-being of families and communities. We want to ensure that we offer our children the highest possible quality.”
Jacobi-Vessels noted that ELC hosts frequent visits for area centers and schools looking for ways to enhance their own programs. ELC also serves as a classroom for UofL early childhood education students.
“NAEYC’s accreditation criteria formed a useful framework for reflecting on our program’s strengths and areas for growth,” she said. “Our team successfully engaged in a yearlong self-study to review our policies and practices and compile deep evidence to document how we meet the NAEYC standards. We are thrilled that we achieved re-accreditation with exceptionally high scores and are grateful for UofL’s ongoing commitment to the ELC and our littlest Cardinals.”
ELC celebrated its 10th anniversary last year. It uses the Reggio Emilia approach to early childhood education, focusing on child-led, play-based learning.