FORT SILL, Okla. (Feb. 1, 2018) -- Two Fort Sill Child Development Centers (CDC) recently received notification of their accreditations from the National Association of the Education of Young Children (NAEYC), after a comprehensive inspection in September.

The Tincher, and Cooper Child Development centers were again nationally accredited, and scored 100 percent in many areas of the inspection, said the CDC directors. The installation's third CDC, Grierson, was not inspected this year.

"Parents can look at the accreditation and say, 'That's where I want my children to be,'" said Yolanda Crowley, Tincher CDC director.

The Military Child Care Act requires CDCs to be accredited by NAEYC. The NAEYC inspector was here Sept. 14-15, 2017, reviewing program documentation and performing classroom observations.

The inspector critiqued 10 Program Standards: relationships, curriculum, teaching, assessment of child progress, health, teachers, families, community relationships, physical environment, and leadership and management. The CDC had to pass these standards with at least 80 percent.

"Within the 10 sections there are subcategories, so there are hundreds of categories where you have to meet the criteria and they are very specific," said Lindsay Insomya, Cooper CDC director.

"We think we scored excellent because the lowest score we received in a standard was 87 percent," she said. She noted that they scored over 100 percent in a couple standards because they met emerging criteria, which was not yet mandatory.

The CDCs were also inspected on Classroom Standards, where 70 percent was passing. This included a review of classroom portfolios, which included lesson plans, parent orientation, and field trips. Another area evaluated was the interaction of caregivers and children, as well as with staff and parents, Crowley said.

Both directors attributed their facilities' success to their staffs.

"Our team works hard every day, so we always provide excellent service to our children and families," Insomya said. "I'm really proud of my team."

Crowley said her staff pulled together to make the accreditation happen.

"It all boiled down to the staff understanding that it takes everybody working as a team to make the accreditation happen."

The accreditations will be valid through 2022. The national accreditation is just one of the many inspections the CDCs go through, said the directors.

The CDCs are subject to unannounced inspections or walk-throughs by the garrison commander, Child and Youth Services director, as well as an annual Installation Management Command inspection. And, there are monthly inspections performed by the Preventive Medicine branch, Fort Sill Fire and Emergency Services, Veterinary Medicine for sanitation, and Installation Safety Office, Insomya said.

"We are held to such high standards through the military inspections that the accreditation just shows what we do every day," Insomya said
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The directors said they and their staffs began preparing for the NAEYC accreditation one year ago by refamiliarizing their staffs with the standards, and ensuring that everyone knew their responsibilities.

"We had six file tubs full of just the Program Standards requirements," Insomya said, "plus each of our 10 classrooms had two 3-inch binder portfolios."

It was the first CDC accreditation process for Crowley as the CDC director; and for Insomya, who has been director for 2.5 years. Insomya said she went through an accreditation when she was director of School Age Services here, but the NAEYC accreditation was much more paper intensive.

Crowley said she was very excited to have achieved the accreditation as a new CDC director.