How to Choose an Early Childhood Education Center

Choosing a program for your child is an important decision. Take a tour of the facility, talk to the director and ask lots of questions.  At a minimum, make sure the program is licensed by DPW (Department of Public Welfare).  Also, look for participation in the Keystone STARS quality rating system (STAR 3 and 4 are the highest levels), and/or national accreditation by NAEYC (National Association for the Education of Young Children).


The relationship between your child and the teacher is critical for developing trust and attachment, and is a foundation for learning. What are the teacher qualifications? What is the turn-over rate for teachers? What is your first impression of the teachers? Watch how teachers relate to the children – are they positive, energetic and interested?

Safety and Supervision:

What is the ratio of children to teachers? State guidelines require minimum ratio requirements based on a child’s age as well as constant supervision of children. Some early childhood education centers exceed state requirements to provide better care.  Is there sufficient and safe space for children to be active, play, learn and nap? Visit the classrooms, multi-purpose rooms and the playground.

Curriculum and Learning Environment:

What curriculum is used? Is it developmentally appropriate with a mixture of teacher planned activities and free choice for children? Are there opportunities for hands-on exploration and interactive learning? Is there a written schedule that includes time for active play, quiet play and nap/rest time? Does the program relate to the local school for a smooth transition to kindergarten?


Visit one of Early Childhood Innovative Connections' Member Programs!

Schedule a tour, ask questions, and learn more about how our member programs are focusing on quality early learning in their programs.

 The Children’s Corner at Moravian Manor 

Director:  Mary Jane Hudock                                                                                                                300 W Lemon St, Lititz, PA  17543                                                                                                     717-625-6128

 STAR 4 Center Serving Ages Infant – 5 Years m                                                                                NAEYC Accredited                                                                                                                                   ECIC Member Since 2013

 Cocalico Care Center

Director: Charlotte Brady                                                                                                                      659 S. 4th Street, Denver, PA  17517                                                                                                 717-336-4007

 STAR 4 Center Serving Ages 3 Years – Grade 5                                                                                     ECIC Member Since 2011

Diamond Street Early Childhood Center 

Directors: Gloria Nwabueze & Mindy Reigel                                            

1311 Diamond Street, Akron, PA  17501                                                                                          


 STAR 4 Center Serving Ages Infant – Grade 6                                                                             NAEYC Accredited                                                                                                                           ECIC Founding Member

  Ephrata Church of the Brethren Children’s Center

201Crescent Ave, Ephrata, PA  17522                                                                                               717-738-1012

 STAR 2 Center Serving Ages 13 months ­- Grade 6                                                                          ECIC Member Since 2015


New Holland Early Learning Center                                                                                           Director: Wanda Coleman                                                                                                                    18 Western Ave, New Holland, PA   17557                                                                                       


 STAR 2 Center Serving Ages Infant – Age 13                                                                                  ECIC Member Since 2013


Reamstown Early Learning Center

Executive Director: Cindy Hogg                                                                                                             58 S Reamstown Rd, Reamstown, PA 17567                                                                                   717-336-3233

 STAR 4 Center Serving Ages Infant – Grade 6


Sonshine Child Development Center

Director: Christine Shebish                                                                                                                  1060 East Newport Rd, Lititz, PA  17543                                                                                            717-627-7919

 STAR 4 Center Serving Ages Infant – PreK                                                                                      ECIC Member Since 2013


Steps to Success

Executive Director: Michelle Harbaugh                                                                                                  56 Hillcrest Ave., Leola, PA  17540                                                                                                    717-656-3363

 STAR 4 Center Serving Ages Infant – 12 Years                                                                                ECIC Member Since 2011


St. Paul Christian Early Learning Center

Executive Director: Karen Schaeffer                                                                                                             200 W. Orange St., Lititz, PA  17543                                                                                                 717-627-0900

 STAR 4 Center Serving Ages Infant – Grade 6                                                                                 NAEYC Accredited                                                                                                                           ECIC Founding Member 2011



 The mission of Early Childhood Innovative Connections (ECIC) is to strengthen the delivery of impactful early childhood education through localized partnerships and shared resources to maximize the quality and efficiency of independent programs. |  717-588-4800