ACCREDITATION & LICENSING
Bell's School adheres to all North Carolina laws designed to protect children through the NC Division of Child Development and Early Education's licensing program. These include building, sanitation, electrical and fire codes. All licensed facilities must meet these minimal standards, even 1-star and provisional licensed programs. Bell's School earned a 5-star license, achieving the highest possible criteria as set by the state.
Beyond our 5-star rating, Bell's School voluntarily meets standards set by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC). These standards exceed those required by the state, and are not required by the state licensing program.
DEVELOPMENTALLY APPROPRIATE PRACTICE
In what is known is Developmentally Appropriate Practice (DAP), all teachers at Bell's School are trained in and practice these concepts. It assures that young children are not subjected to desk sitting and workbooks but instead are actively engaged in activities of manipulation, discovery, experimentation and participation. These activities are critical in promoting higher order thinking and problem solving skills.
ABOUT OUR TEACHERS
Teachers at Bell's School have BS or BA degrees in Early Childhood Education or a related field, or an AAS degree in Early Childhood Education. All teachers are supported in continuing education to remain current on the best practices in the field. This ensures our teachers are current on the latest research, findings and data that are ever evolving.
Annually, each teacher is evaluated using the Classroom Assessment Scoring System (CLASS), developed by the University of Virginia. The system evaluates classroom and teacher/child interactions as well as classroom climate to ensure that the teacher is a secure base for children and the environment is positive.
Nature is one of our greatest teachers.
The outdoor play areas at Bell's School are natural playgrounds. Guided by the National Wildlife Federation, our playground engages children to plant, tend and harvest a vegetable garden or care for butterfly gardens and worm composts. This effort is guided by the understanding that children are multi-sensory and should be encouraged to spend time outside in natural settings.
We partner with Asheville Greenworks for environmental eduction, recycling education and composting. The school participates in the Appalachian State Agriculture Project's (ASAP) Growing Minds Programs. The program supplies our school with assistance and curriculum support for our natural outdoor spaces and gardening.
TEACHER TO STUDENT RATIO
Group sizes and teacher/student ratios are significantly lower at Bell's School than is required by NC licensing law. This is a major part of the "Michaux Method" that the school uses as a guide. The result is a calmer, less stressful daily routine for all.