Early Childhood Education

WVC prepares students in the early childhood education (ECE) program for careers that focus on children from birth to five years and their families. This program provides an understanding of a child's social, emotional, physical and cognitive development. It emphasizes practices that are developmentally appropriate and embrace both family and community.

The ECE program is designed to develop skilled professionals who understand and apply the principles of early childhood development to a broad spectrum of careers, advocate the early childhood education profession, and respond to community and workplace needs. Students and community members will also find the courses useful in helping them to become knowledgeable and confident parents.

Research shows that interactions between caregivers/educators and children are one of the most important indicators of a high-quality program. Caregivers and educators need the training and education opportunities that support high-quality interactions with children. Additionally, caregivers need clear and accessible pathways to attain professional goals, from local training opportunities to higher education.

The Department of Early Learning (DEL) partnered with the Washington State Board for Community and Technical Colleges (SBCTC) to develop a clear educational pathway for early learning professionals. This partnership has made it possible for Wenatchee Valley College Early Childhood Education students to earn the stackable certificates listed below.

ECE Programs:

  • Associate of Technical Science (ATS) Degree
  • Associate in Applied Science-Transfer (AAS-T) Degree
  • ECE Short Certificates
    • Initial Certificate
    • General Certificate
    • Infant/Toddler Certificate
    • School Age Certificate
    • Family Child Care Certificate
    • Administration Certificate
    • Early Childhood Education-State Certificate

To be eligible for a degree or certificate, students must earn at least a "C" grade (2.0) in all ECE core courses and a cumulative 2.0 grade point average. Core program courses may have prerequisite requirements. English and mathematics courses require qualifying assessment scores or acceptable preparatory coursework in those subjects.

Students who complete the ATS in Early Childhood Education will be able to:

  • Document foundational competency in the Washington state’s eleven Early Childhood Education Professional Core Competencies.
  • Demonstrate evidence of the ability to plan experiences and provide materials for young children in the four different Early Childhood settings – Infant/toddler program, Family/Home Child Care Program, Preschool Program and a Kindergarten,1st, 2nd or 3rd grade classroom.
  • Identify and use credible professional resources from multiple sources, allowing them to better serve children and families with a wide range of cultures, languages, needs and abilities.
  • Acquire training and education to seek employment or advance in current employment in the field of early childhood education.
  • Develop a foundation to continue their studies in early childhood education.