In November 2011 Country Home Learning Center #8 — our North Austin location — became a Texas Rising Star 4-Star Preschool. Then, in March 2012, Country Home #7 — our South Austin Location — also earned that same designation. With the help of our Teacher Mentor who actively worked with both the administrative staff as well as the teaching staff, our school became a better place to learn and grow. We will continue to expand the program until all of our schools are certified by Texas Rising Stars.
What is Texas Rising Stars?
From Child Care Group: A Texas Rising Star (TRS) provider is A Child Care Assistance provider who voluntarily meets criteria that exceeds the Texas Department of Family and Protective (DFPS) Child Care Licensing Minimum Standards.
The TRS criteria looks at the overall operation of the facility and the experiences provided for children while in care. The criteria includes meeting the following requirements:
- Compliance with DFPS licensing
- Qualifications for directors and caregivers in licensed child care centers and registered and licensed child care homes
- Staff orientation for new employees
- Staff training for licensed child care centers registered and licensed child care homes
- Smaller than minimum standard group sizes
- Written program goals and objectives for curriculum and activities
- Positive caregiver/child interactions
- Appropriate indoor and outdoor environments and materials
- Focus on providing a healthy and safe environment
- Offer nutritious meals and snacks and practice age appropriate meal time routines
- Encourage parent involvement
What It Means to Be A 4-Star Provider
It is “the highest level; provider meets the majority of the criteria and represents the highest quality in the TRS program. Certification is issued for three years.”
What Texas Rising Stars Means to CHLC
“In implementing the changes to our program, we were able to find the strengths of each person in our team and expand on them. Our administrative team is more hands on in the classrooms; our teachers are allowed to show ownership in their classrooms. They are encouraged to take our curriculum and expand on it. One of our two year old classes made a Tee Pee in their room this week and talked about what it was like to live in a tee pee and cook over a fire. The teachers are very hands on with the children; they were in the tee pee with the children and sang songs around the fire. They had a pretend fire in their class. Our threes all had Chocolate Fever-spots in honor of Brown Day. We had a mock election this week. While it wasn’t in the Curriculum, our children were exposed to the process of electing the leaders of our country. The teachers at Country Home are excited to help the children grow and learn new things every day. Our school has a warm and inviting feel to it. Children want to come and see what they are going to do next.” –Janette McElreath, Director at Country Home Learning Center #8
“Meeting this criteria helps us stay above our competition. This certification helps us help our employees to further their education to provide better quality child care. The teachers and children are more engaged and excited about the environments. It enhances the curriculum we already have, with a huge emphasis on literacy. It makes our facility more enviting. It makes us more connected with our community and our parents.” –Shanon Martinez, Director at Country Home Learning Center #7
Missed the previous Your Child’s Care & Education posts? No Problem. Jump to the other posts to view information about our other certifications and accreditation.
Part 1: AdvancED Accreditation
Part 2: CDA Certified Teachers
Part 3: Eco Healthy Child Care