Philosophy -- Home -- Staff


Many years ago I had a vision. My vision was to create an ideal early childhood program that is based solely on the best interests of children, regardless of their abilities, differences, and their family background - "all children belong" would be the motto. It would meet and enhance the developmental stages of young children in an environment that provides state-of-the-art early learning experiences - a program where all children are treated as individuals with a need for love, security, comfort, guidance, opportunity, freedom, and most of all RESPECT.

Ultimately, my goal was to provide a healthy environment where children are given every opportunity to safely and freely explore and discover as they learn and grow. I also believe that children must be given the tools they need to learn to make good choices and guided and nurtured in a positive way in order to allow them to grow to be happy, confident, healthy, responsible, productive, and brave individuals.

Today, just as I imagined, Pride and Joy Preschool stands proud in the heart of the City of El Cerrito.

My passion for creating this program was very personal. I would like to share it with you because without the story of how it began, the history of Pride and Joy would not be complete and it would not convey what our program is all about. It all began with a very special individual, who is very dear to my heart. His name is Anson and he is my ultimate Pride and Joy. Anson not only inspired me to create a program for him, but he also inspired me, as a parent, to fight for the rights of children to receive proper education, the rights of children to exercise their freedom to learn without fear, and the rights of children to be cared for as respected, valued individuals.

Anson was born with a condition called autism. Our program is the result of having first-hand experience of nurturing a child with this profound disability. As with most parents, finding a suitable program that would meet the needs of a special needs child despite school district bureaucracy was nearly impossible. There came a time when we had to make a well-informed decision that ultimately changed our lives to meet our priority. As Anson was and is my priority, I felt that his early childhood experience was just as important as respecting his individuality and his individual needs. For this reason, Pride and Joy program was created for him. Because Anson is my Pride and Joy I didn't have to think too hard to find a name for my program. Looking back, the creation of Pride and Joy is the best thing that ever happened.

Although my son outgrew our program many years ago, I have been, ever since, in the field of early childhood education and continue to enjoy it. Although it was Anson's needs that inspired me to become a childcare professional, it was a decision I made with absolutely no regrets. I must confess that though at times meeting children’s need may be a challenge, it is nevertheless a rewarding experience to be able to contribute to the society at large a healthy and sound early childhood program for our new generation of children. Thus, I feel a sense of pride in achieving my goal and a feeling of joy in making a difference in our children's lives.

With that said, I would like to take this opportunity to wholeheartedly thank our parents for their support of Pride and Joy Preschool and for allowing me the opportunity to serve your children.