We are 38 of New York City’s independent early childhood programs, and we would like to add our shared perspective to the ongoing dialogue regarding early childhood education and in support of the decisions, our parents confront in the approaching school year.
Preschool families are facing unique challenges, and these are occurring during the most critical time in their children’s lives. As educators and early childhood experts, we appreciate that parents of young children have questions and concerns about what their children’s education might look like this fall, and how safe it will be.
We know from decades of brain research that the most important years of human development take place in the first five years of life. The brain reaches 90% of its growth by age 5, and the majority of that growth occurs by age 3. Being in a formal early childhood setting that supports that development is critical in helping children to build healthy relationships with peers and adults, develop language acquisition, and strengthen fine and gross motor skills. During these years, children also learn how to ask questions and explore the world around them in a safe and nurturing environment.
Our schools have a long history of working together toward providing optimal safety while supporting learning during these critical developmental years. Long before the COVID-19 pandemic, we shared with each other the best practices based on CDC guidelines. Since the pandemic began, experts that specialize in COVID-19-based protocols regularly advise us on best procedures to follow in order to protect our children and staff members.
The schools listed below support New York families, with whom we have worked for generations. We want to assure them that we are here, eager to welcome them to exceptional, nurturing schools that have implemented appropriate COVID protocols, and ready to offer guidance on how best to support children during the most critical learning years of their lives.
To learn more about the Pine Street School program, please visit their education website HERE.