Today, Thursday, October 22, we mark Child Care Worker and Early Childhood Educator Appreciation Day – a day for us to take a moment and recognize the commitment, hard work and passion of our Designated Early Childhood Educators (DECEs). Every day, these educators support the learning and care of thousands of students in the Waterloo Region District School Board in the Extended Day and Core Day Kindergarten Programs.

This year’s theme of “Rising Up!”, developed by the Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care, recognizes the commitment and dedication of all staff who work to educate young children. In the face of unprecedented challenges, like a global pandemic, these educators have risen to the challenge and continue to help lay the foundations for future success for our students.

Through play-based and child-centred teaching and learning, our early childhood educators bring age-appropriate programming that supports student development, achievement and well-being. The partnership between our early childhood educators and teachers strengthens the core responsibility we have as a board to help our students succeed and reach their highest potential in a safe, equitable and inclusive learning environment.

We invite you to join us in thanking all of our DECEs for the important work they do and the contributions they make to our Extended Day and core day Kindergarten Programs. Thank you for teaching and nurturing our youngest learners in the critical development stages of life, for preparing our students for life-long learning and emotional well-being, and for creating a space where each student can experience a sense of belonging.