What do you want the children in your care to gain while in your program?:
Confidence in themselves, pro social behavior, learning to live in a diverse world, learning to relate well with others, how to be a good friend and interact positively with peers in group settings.
What sets your Agency apart from the other area Agencies?:
1. The longevity of our programs, having been founded in 1913
2. The culture of seeking and providing education for our children and our teachers.
3. The Guild provides more care for DCF children than any other childcare agency in Massachusetts
4. The Guild is large. Base on our size we are able provide services in rural and urban settings, we are able to provide more resources for children, families and employees, we are able to provide excellent employee benefits, economy of scale allows us to save dollars.
Do you have the resources to accept special needs children?:
What is your Agency’s educational philosophy?:
At the Guild of St. Agnes, we provide a safe and loving environment for toddler children to 12 years. Our teachers are trained professionals certified through the Department of Early Education and Care, as well as associate and bachelor degreed. We base our philosophy on the theories of Jean Piaget, Howard Gardner and Lev Vygotsky. These theories stated that children learn through play and interaction. We provide learning areas that allow children to interact with peers, adults and the environment.
Children’s learning cycle beginning in awareness, moving to exploring, inquiry and finally utilization. Opportunities are provided for children to explore curriculum topics through hands on activities and play. The curriculum and age appropriate materials allow children to develop though each stage of learning at their own pace.
The teachers are knowledgeable in child development, supportive of children and their families and will plan a curriculum designed to meet the needs of both the individual and the group. The staff will be open to and encourage communications with parents/families. When parents/families and teachers have effective communication, the child will feel safe and secure. Making children feel safe and secure to promote learning is the foundation of the program. All Guild Centers meet the licensing standards of the MA DEEC and are accredited by NAEYC.
Have you had an “aha” moment with a child and/or a surprising result from the use of a classroom activity?:
We have a child with Down Syndrome who is also partially non verbal. Teachers have worked with him and other children in the classroom teaching sign language. One particular day a classmate of our “special” child was building a block structure when our “special” child attempted to knock over the structure. The young boy was able to use the sign language for stop and our “special” child did just that.
On another occasion a child told the teacher that his TV needed to be fixed. When the teacher asked him why his TV needed to be fixed he said “because everyone is telling me that the President is black, but on my TV he is brown”.
Is there anything else about your Agency that you would like to be mentioned?:
Yes, the Guild contracts with over 120 Family Child Care providers who take infants and offer an infant referral service.
Also, recently we had a consultant review our agency. Comments from his results included:
“More than three quarters of the Guild’s resources are personnel. The approach to and management of these resources is, at this point in the study exemplary.”
“There is a pervasive and remarkably consistent tone that has been reported in twelve interviews of Guild leadership: pride, ownership and a keen sense of membership in the organization.”
“While each staff member said it in their own words, the depth of personal engagement and commitment is remarkable and with little exception resonant throughout.”