|Roeland Park ECDC receives five-star rating from KQRIS|
"We're really happy and proud of our work," Roeland Park Child Care Director Rosanna Munoz said of the award. "I think this shows that we provide quality care for children and their families and we care about our program and that we strive to be the best that we can.
"It's hard to get a five-start rating because your staff are evaluated on how they interact with kids, so it says a lot about the staff working there and their commitment to the program and to the kids," added Gardner Childrens Services Specialist Lisa Hughes.
KQRIS is a five-star quality rating system for child care centers, preschools, Head Start facilities, faith-based preschool programs, and family child-care homes. Participating sites receive a comprehensive assessment that results in a quality rating of one to five stars.
The process involved an extensive application as well as an on-site visit by a KQRIS assessor. Applicants are judged on five criteria: learning environment, family partnerships, teacher qualifications, ratios, and accreditation status. The learning environment is the most inclusive of these and covers: classroom materials and arrangement, interactions with children, communication with children, and handwashing practices.
As a five-star center, Roeland Park will have to renew its rating every two years, Munoz said.
Hughes said that of the JCPRD's three early childhood development centers, only Roeland Park meets the criteria for participating in KQRIS because the other two also have school-age programs, which disqualifies them from the program.
United Way of Wyandotte County oversees KQRIS as well as Tri County SmartStart, a quality improvement initiative working to increase the number of quality early learning programs in Johnson, Leavenworth, and Wyandotte Counties. Through Smart Start, the Roeland Park center receives wage supplements for two staff members as well as flexible benefits and education grants which provide $3,000 for staff training.