Our Mission and Strategic Direction
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Download the PDF document to read about NAEYC's Strategic Direction.
All young children thrive and learn in a society dedicated to ensuring they reach their full potential.
NAEYC promotes high-quality early learning for all children, birth through age 8, by connecting practice, policy, and research. We advance a diverse, dynamic early childhood profession and support all who care for, educate, and work on behalf of young children.
Values and Beliefs
Our core values are defined in the NAEYC Code of Ethical Conduct and are deeply rooted in the early childhood profession. In addition, we seek to be a high–performing, inclusive organization that is enriched by and continually grows from our commitment to diversity, as embodied by our core beliefs.
We uphold these values and beliefs in all our interactions and initiatives:
- Appreciate childhood as a unique and valuable stage of the human life cycle.
- Base our work on knowledge of how children develop and learn.
- Appreciate and support the bond between the child and family.
- Recognize that children are best understood and supported in the context of family, culture, community, and society.
- Respect the dignity, worth, and uniqueness of each individual (child, family member, and colleague).
- Respect diversity in children, families, and colleagues.
- Recognize that children and adults achieve their full potential in the context of relationships that are based on trust and respect.
- Excellence and Innovation—We are imaginative risk takers willing to challenge assumptions while being accountable to our mission and fiscally responsible.
- Transparency—We act with openness and clarity.
- Reflection—We consider multiple sources of evidence and diverse perspectives to review past performance, note progress and successes, and engage in continuous quality improvement.
- Equity and Opportunity—We advocate for policies, practices, and systems that promote full and inclusive participation. We confront biases that create barriers and limit the potential of children, families, and early childhood professionals.
- Collaborative Relationships—We share leadership and responsibility in our work with others. We commit time and effort to ensure diverse participation and more effective outcomes. We act with integrity, respect, and trust.