Transparency means that we are open about what we do and that we share that information freely. When the National Accreditation Commission conducts its review of our center, we openly share all of our daily practices. Our staff and parents are also surveyed and invited to ask questions and share feedback. We often hear the words “Quality Child Care,” but don’t know exactly what they mean or how they apply to our busy lives. Transparency and accountability are the foundations of Quality Child Care and the Florida Gold Seal status.
Our parents and families know that they are always welcome inside our classrooms. They know that the positive interactions that they see every day are also what the Department of Children and Families and the National Accreditation Commission review when they conduct on-site visits. We are always working toward further transparency and accountability in every aspect of our program.
“Some might say that accreditation doesn’t matter, that transparency doesn’t matter. They might say that just being a licensed center is good enough. There are even those who claim centers shouldn’t need a license from the Department of Children & Families, but we found that is simply not true,” says Open Doors Preschool founder, Rachel McIntyre.
“There are a lot of ‘soundbites’ out there. A cute video, a smiling photo, but those things are not a substitute for transparency. Fast food companies have the ’99 cent cheeseburger’; it looks great in the ads, but if you saw what went into them would you still want to eat it?” Mrs. McIntyre laughs. “How many people do you see inside a fast food chain smiling like they do in the ads or on social media? It looks good in the commercial, but you can’t polish a 99 cent cheeseburger.”
“When we began the self-study process with the National Accreditation Commission, it changed everything that we did for the better. The passion that we have for children began to shine through in our staff. Our parents were more confident in our practices. It was the positive freedom to say ‘This is who we are. This is what we do!’ We were no longer wondering if something was an indicator of quality–we knew. It was a transformation–and it continues to be a transformation! Transparency has done that. Every year as a Gold Seal Center just gets better!”