High-quality Preschool Programming for 3 - 5 year olds.

Professional Development


Resources for Parents

Early Childhood

The first five years of life are a period of incredible growth in children. Thus, it is imperative that the early childhood workforce have the knowledge and competencies necessary to optimize children's development and prepare them for current and future success.

All new staff, consultants, and volunteers receive orientation that focuses, at a minimum, on the goals and philosophy of the program and their implementation process.

At a minimum, staff receive 16 clock hours of professional development per year.

Professional development topics include, but not limited to:

  • Building knowledge, experience, and competencies to improve child and family outcomes

  • Best practices for implementing family engagement strategies

  • Health and safety practices that ensure children are kept safe at all times

  • Methods to handle suspected or known child abuse and neglect cases

  • Research-based approaches focused on effective curricula implementation

  • Research-based coordinated coaching

  • Full and effective participation of children who are dual language learners or have disabilities

School Age

Knowledge is a lifelong process. The Great Explorations program is committed to providing staff with continuous professional development opportunities.

Upon hire, staff receive an orientation and program introduction. Site coordinators review the daily routine, mandated reporting, the principles of program quality, child and youth development, and other components. Training is ongoing from the point of hire with weekly opportunities for learning. Annually staff members receive a minimum of 16 hours of training. Great Explorations is home to three Center for Youth Program Quality-Youth Work Methods facilitators. Trainings vary but may include:

  • Active Learning

  • Communicating with Youth (Ask-Listen-Encourage)

  • Building Community

  • Inviting Youth Voice

  • Homework Help

  • Refraining Conflict

  • The Great Explorations programs also participate in regular self-assessment, including goal setting and site-specific professional development to ensure needs within varying student populations are met.

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