Children’s programs earn national acclaim


Tobyhanna Army Depot, PA — Tobyhanna’s Child, Youth and School Services (CYSS) organization offers some of the best programming in the nation, according to the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC).

The Family Services Division early childhood programs here were awarded NAEYC Accreditation based on the results of an extensive self-study process.  A year-long process that measured programs and services against the ten NAEYC Early Childhood Program Standards and more than 400 related accreditation criteria.

Staff and family members spent the year evaluating programs, offering suggestions for improvement and developing action plans.

“Achieving this level of care is a mark of quality,” said Jennifer Williams, CYSS program director.   “This shows our families that we are committed to providing the best care possible.”

The accreditation is awarded every five years.  During that period, officials submit annual reports documenting that they maintain compliance with the NAEYC standards.  All NAEYC-accredited programs are also subject to unannounced visits by program assessors.

“The self-study process is a team effort that involves the families and staff,” Williams said. “You ask everyone to evaluate your programs to see if they’re meeting the needs of the children.

Feedback from the parents indicated that most felt the center was doing a good job, according to Williams.  She noted that 82 percent of the parents participated in the accreditation process.

“A parent’s involvement in these types of assessments is vital to the success of our program,” Williams said.  “Their feedback helps us grow through continuous improvement processes.”

Tobyhanna’s programs earned several commendations from the NAEYC Academy.  Officials noted the use of developmentally, culturally and linguistically appropriate and effective teaching approaches.  Staff members were praised for promoting the nutrition and health of children and protecting children and staff from illness and injury.  In addition, CDC professionals here were lauded for administering a program efficiently and effectively, ensuring that all involved persons, staff, children and families are included.

The CDC employs more than 50 people who fill several roles from classroom teacher to management and support staff.

“Our staff works really hard to document and maintain the standards set forth by the NAEYC Academy,” Williams said.  “They do a remarkable job.  Without them none of this would have been possible.”

Tobyhanna Army Depot is the Defense Department’s largest center for the repair, overhaul and fabrication of a wide variety of electronics systems and components, from tactical field radios to the ground terminals for the defense satellite communications network.  Tobyhanna’s missions support all branches of the Armed Forces.

About 5,600 personnel are employed at Tobyhanna, which is located in the Pocono Mountains of northeastern Pennsylvania.

Tobyhanna Army Depot is part of the U.S. Army CECOM Life Cycle Management Command.  Headquartered at Fort Monmouth, N.J., the command’s mission is to research, develop, acquire, field and sustain communications, command, control computer, intelligence, electronic warfare and sensors capabilities for the Armed Forces.

Photo Caption:  Becky Guerrini, child and youth program assistant, helps children in the preschool room decorate a box for Show and Share.  (Photo by Tony Medici)