Easterseals Early Learning Center earns national NAEYC accreditation

The Easterseals Early Learning Center in Evansville has earned accreditation from the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC), the world’s largest organization working on behalf of young children. Less than 10 percent of all child care centers, preschools, and kindergartens nationally achieve this recognition. Easterseals received word of the Early Learning Center’s achievement on April 9, 2021, after a lengthy and extensive accreditation process.

NAEYC Accreditation is a rigorous and transformative quality-improvement system that uses a set of 10 research-based standards to collaborate with early education programs to recognize and drive quality improvement in high-quality early learning environments.

“We’re proud that the Easterseals Early Learning Center, the only fully-inclusive early childhood program in Evansville, has earned this mark of quality from NAEYC,” said Kelly Schneider, President/CEO of the Easterseals Rehabilitation Center. “This accreditation reflects the hard work and dedication of our Early Learning Center staff. They truly deserve this recognition, as they go above and beyond on a daily basis to meet the needs of children of all abilities and their families.”

Vice President of Early Childhood Services Laurie Seals added, “Our directors, teachers, assistants, therapists, and support staff are committed to meeting the highest professional standards while helping all children thrive. Typically developing children, children with disabilities and delays, and those with significant medical conditions all deserve the highest quality care and education. That’s what all children receive when they play, grow, and learn together at the Easterseals Early Learning Center.”

The inclusive Easterseals Early Learning Center at 621 S. Cullen Avenue in Evansville is the home of three programs, all of which meet NAEYC accreditation standards:      

     • Milestones Early Care & Education for children of all abilities, 6 weeks-3 years old

     • LEAD Academy (Learn, Engage, Achieve, Discover), an inclusive preschool with a
       wide-ranging educational curriculum for children of all abilities, 30 months-6 years of age

     • Dan & Nancy Mitchell Therapeutic Preschool for children age 3-5 identified as having
       a developmental disability requiring special education services

The Early Learning Center utilizes an extensive creative curriculum to meet each child’s unique needs. The Center incorporates multisensory activities, including a comprehensive arts enrichment program featuring the “Golf Gives Back” Arts Studio. The Toyota Indiana “Full Steam Ahead for Learning” STEAM curriculum (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, Math) helps all children enter school ready to learn and succeed. The Early Learning Center has previously been recognized by Early Learning Indiana as a leader for its family engagement efforts.

To learn more about the Easterseals Early Learning Center, visit www.eastersealsrehabcenter.com or contact Laurie Seals at LSeals@evansvillerehab.com or 812-474-2244. The Center is now accepting enrollment applications for preschool and toddlers for summer and fall. For more information on openings, contact Ann Feldhaus, AFeldhaus@evansvillerehab.com or 812-474-2244.

“NAEYC-Accredited programs bring our definitions of excellence for early childhood education to life each day,” said Kristen Johnson, senior director of Early Learning Program Accreditation at NAEYC. “Earning NAEYC Accreditation makes the Easterseals Early Learning Center an exemplar of good practice for families and the entire community.”