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Highest Quality Early Childhood Development through Honoring Relationships Rooted in Equity and Social Justice

Reflections from Our Director

“We believe that when an engaged community – a community of parents, educators, health providers and the public at large – comes together with shared dreams for our youngest children, there is a force that pulls everyone forward to create the kind of future where all children thrive.”

Lois Vermilya
Director, 2003 – Present

Lois Vermilya

At the heart of the Family Development Program’s Wemagination Resource Center is an image of a child who is powerful, curious and infinitely competent as an active, dynamic learner. We do everything in our power to keep this remarkable spark of learning alive.

FDP Mission

Since our earliest beginnings, the Family Development Program has promoted a philosophy of child-centered learning, where teachers and parents are collaborators in supporting children’s natural joy, passion for creative discovery, and a wonder of learning.

We believe that quality education for every child defines one of our greatest challenges as a society and as a citizenry. We believe that equity is every child’s unalienable right. Our approach to our work is rooted in a deep, enduring respect for the cultural and family heritage that our youngest children know and love dearly. Those strengths are really what we value and call “our home.”

We believe that our children need to be surrounded by circles of support that actively engage their families as full partners with early learning programs and schools. We need strong and trusted relationships with families to tackle this complex and very tough job of education. It’s a huge responsibility to instill a lifelong love of learning – learning that nourishes and builds our citizenship, our communities, and quality of life that is shared by all.

I am proud to give leadership to this powerful set of values, ideas and approaches that represent decades of expertise.  The heartfelt understanding and nurturance of children with their families is what defines the Family Development Program -- and is what I personally hold very dear.