The Child Development Program, a part of the College of Education & Human Development, is comprised of two locations, the Lanette L. Suttles Child Development Center and the Capitol Hill Child Enrichment Center. The centers play an important role in University research efforts, supports teacher education programs, offers an ideal setting for students from a variety of disciplines to learn about young children through observation, interaction and research, and provides a model of “best practice” for Georgia’s early learning professionals at all levels of the professional ladder.
The goals of the program are based on current learning and child development theories. Young children learn through play. They grow and develop when they are in a supportive environment that encourages them to try new things and to express their natural curiosity. As the children play with appropriate materials and equipment, they gain knowledge about their world. Social skills increase as children interact with each other and with teachers.
The professional staff is trained to assess children’s needs and to plan a quality program that will meet those needs. The teachers make their classrooms exciting places where children can develop their full potential. Children thrive and grow in self-confidence in the program’s safe, non-competitive environment where they are fully accepted as they are. The program serves families from many cultures; their customs and traditions are respected, and their presence enriches the program.
The executive director, Stacey French-Lee, Ph.D., is responsible for over-seeing major activities such as budget and facilities. The associate director, Phyllis Kimbro, is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the Child Development Program, including supervision of staff.
Each classroom has a lead teacher, assistant lead teachers and assistants who are responsible for planning the daily schedule of activities. Each lead teacher is a professional with a background in early childhood education, child development, or a related field. The assistant lead teachers and assistants have a variety of educational backgrounds and years of experience working with young children.
Support staff includes a business manager, curriculum coordinator, resource coordinator, pre-kindergarten director, administrative assistant and a cook at each center. From time to time, interns are assigned to our program from various departments throughout the university.