It is amazing how much has happened since Step Up to Quality, Nebraska’s quality rating and Improvement system, launched in 2014. While the program is only four years old, interest and growth of this primarily voluntary system has been phenomenal. To date, 570 programs have created Step Up to Quality Profiles in Nebraska’s Early Childhood Professional Records System (NECPRS), which is the first step in committing to the process, and 323 programs have become participating providers by requesting a step rating.
Parents and families now have resources available to help them identify high-quality programs in their area. Step Up to Quality provides parents with information to help them evaluate the quality of child care and early childhood education so that they can make the best decision when choosing a program for their child. See a map of Nebraska child care providers participating in Step Up to Quality.
Read how first-time mom Sheena Helgenberger found a child care program that was just what she wanted for her daughter. “I wanted to find a place where my baby would obviously be given the necessary basics, but I also want more for her. I want her to be in a place where she’s loved and cuddled, where she’s challenged to hit developmental milestones, and where I feel a partnership with the teachers, and Step Up to Quality helped me find that. My sweet Harper is my whole world, and knowing she’s safe and cared for and learning new things every day is priceless.”
The type of child care programs parents choose for their children can have a big impact on their future. Early learning builds the foundation for skills needed to be successful in school, work and life. Brain research tells us that the brain’s neural foundation, which will support all future learning, is developed during a child's first three years. Children who receive quality early child care and education are more likely to:
Let’s all take the lead in providing exemplary environments for Nebraska's kids to learn and grow because they deserve it!
Step Up to Quality Director
Nebraska Department of Education