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Empowering the Future: Yellow Brick Road ECDC’s Leadership in Training Program

ybr empowering the future

At Yellow Brick Road Early Childhood Development Center, we believe in nurturing not only the young minds of our children but also in fostering the growth and development of our educators and leaders. This is why we are thrilled to introduce our groundbreaking Leadership in Training (LIT) program, specifically designed to cultivate and enhance the leadership skills of our current team members, helping them to achieve their personal and professional best.  This program was launched in mid-2023 in our Nebraska campuses and has since blossomed into our other 15 locations company wide. 

Why Leadership Training Matters

In the fast-evolving field of early childhood education, leadership skills are paramount. Effective leaders can inspire their teams, improve classroom environments, and make a significant impact on the development of the children in their care. The LIT program at Yellow Brick Road ECDC is built on the understanding that every educator has the potential to be a great leader.

Goals of the LIT Program

Our primary goal is to identify and nurture potential leaders within our existing staff. By doing so, we aim to:

  1. Enhance Professional Development: Equip our educators with advanced professional development and knowledge that exceed the basics of classroom management and child care.
  2. Promote Internal Advancement: Encourage career growth within our center by preparing staff for higher responsibilities and leadership roles.
  3. Foster a Culture of Excellence: Build a supportive environment where continuous improvement and personal achievement are celebrated.

Program Structure

The LIT program is structured around a series of interactive workshops, mentorship opportunities, and hands-on leadership experiences. Key components include:

  • Workshops and Cohorts: Topics cover a range of leadership skills such as decision-making, effective communication, conflict resolution, and team motivation.  These are held weekly for those who have committed to attending.
  • Mentorship: Each participant is given direct access to our Executive Director of Talent, Learning and Development to provide guidance and support throughout their journey.
  • Practical Leadership Opportunities: Participants apply their learning in real-world scenarios, leading projects and initiatives within the center.

Success Stories

Since its inception, the LIT program has already seen remarkable success. For instance, our own Melissa Fuller was just promoted from within our Downtown Des Moines location to an Assistant Director role.  Melissa was paramount in the success of the initial launch of LiT in Iowa.  She participated regularly, completed any workshop/homework offered and grew more confident in a leadership position.

melissa fuller
samantha mclane

Our wonderful Samantha McLane, a mentor teacher in Plymouth, MN, has shared her experience and is excited about the opportunity to grow and succeed at a higher level.
“Being on the Lit call is so helpful because every topic each week is different and new. It’s important for me to be on it so I can learn and grow and eventually become an assistant director with the company and this is the best place to start. And I get lots of great feedback from the higher ups along with  other staff within the company.”

“I am passionate about the of value the quality early childhood educators. YBR is unique in its vision and program, so I love being a part of nurturing that next group of wonderful YBR educators. It’s a way to fulfill our mission statement!” – Alyssa Rodriguez

Ms. Alyssa is a fantastic infant mentor teacher in our Minnetonka, MN school. She is invaluable to our team.

ms alyssa
robin henrey

Robyn Henery, our mentor Pre-K teacher in Grimes, IA says, “I would have to start by saying that LIT has helped me to further my education in what kind of environment I need for myself at work, but also for the children I teach each and everyday. I have learned that communication within the workplace is a huge benefit in order to maintain order in your classroom, whether that is between staff or children. These LIT calls have opened my eyes to all of the new opportunities I get to include into my classroom that will benefit me and the children I teach on a daily. LIT is such an important opportunity and one I could not pass up because it pushes me to be better for myself, all of the children and even my coworkers. LIT has given me so many great ideas and opportunities to display these ideas within the work place, but it also allows me to benefit from using these opportunities outside of work as well. My long term goal with LIT is to learn as much as I can to better myself as a co-worker, employee, teacher and even a mentor to help out wherever and whenever I can.”

Join Us on This Journey

We are excited about the future and the impact the LIT program will have on our team and the children we serve. This initiative is more than just a training program; it’s a commitment to the personal and professional growth of every member of our team. At Yellow Brick Road ECDC, we are dedicated to building a brighter, more successful future for all. 

Through the LIT program, Yellow Brick Road ECDC continues to pave the way in early childhood education, ensuring our leaders are as well-prepared as the young minds they are shaping. Join us in this vital mission as we strive to empower each other and achieve our personal best while putting good humans into the world and leaving it better than we found it.