The West Valley College CDC is a 45-year-old early childhood program dedicated to supporting the needs of children and families in our community. We emphasize creating an environment of respect and understanding that supports the development of the whole child. We accomplish this through low adult-child ratios, highly educated teachers, and a focus on diversity. The program also serves as a lab school for the Child Studies department, helping to train the next generation of early childhood educators.
The program operates on a non-discriminatory basis, according equal opportunity for access to services and employment without regard to race, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, sexual preference, or special needs and disabilities. No religious instruction of any kind is provided.
We believe play is the natural medium through which growth and development can best be realized for each child. Therefore, our program reflects an emergent play-based curriculum in a natural setting. We establish an aesthetically beautiful environment in which children are free to explore, create, learn and grow.
We believe children learn by doing and discovering for themselves, so adults provide opportunities for children to experiment and explore their environment. Adults serve as guides, facilitators, and co-discoverers, rather than direct instructors. Curriculum topics emerge out of the interests and needs of the children.
The program is staffed by full-time teachers who have degrees in Early Childhood Education. The CDC staff have training and experience in all areas of child development. One adult is scheduled for every four to eight children.
Our curriculum is ethnically diverse, non-sexist, and anti-biased. This is demonstrated in the use of appropriate materials, toys, books, pictures, and foods. We employ a diverse staff and are often assisted by our parents and Child Studies students in providing unique ethnic and culturally relevant experiences.
We serve as a research-based teacher training school for the 700 Child Studies students
We are proactively addressing the achievement gap by providing children with high-quality early education while enabling their parents to achieve a college degree. Many of our parents are first-generation college students seeking to create a better life for their families.
We foster a spirit of inquiry through our emergent, play-based curriculum
Our presence on campus nurtures lasting relationships among children, students, departments, and the greater community
We practice sustainability in our outdoor classroom components