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IdahoSTARS continues to showcase the highest quality child care facilities in the State. Meet real-life examples of quality child care, celebrate their successes, and see the possibilities for other child care providers reaching the same goals. 

Please join us in celebrating Jacqueline Maurer, Owner and Director of Jax Daycare in Post Falls. Maurer has earned a Steps to Quality, Step 4 rating. In this question-and-answer series with Maurer from October 5, 2021, learn more about her experiences becoming recognized as a high-quality child care facility:

IdahoSTARS: What are you most proud of about your facility?

Maurer: It is a small daycare out of my home, but it has a spacious area for the children to play and I have spent a lot of time investing in ways children can have quiet time, alone time, and large motor skills (time). I feel children can feel at home here while learning.

IdahoSTARS: What are your future goals for your facility?

Maurer: Hopefully in the near future, I will be moving to a new home that will provide more space that is just for daycare. I would also like to have more of a learning curriculum.

IdahoSTARS: Can you describe your journey through the Steps to Quality program?

Maurer: When I first started the program, I really did not know too much about the business. I started working with Tammy who was wonderful in teaching me and guiding me along on ways to organize the daycare and make it more enjoyable for the children as well as me. I learned about the business end of things as well. As time went on, I learned about safety, education, food, and always learning about new child development.

IdahoSTARS: What attributes does someone need to be successful in reaching the higher steps of Steps to Quality?

Maurer: I think you just have to have the want to learn and serve the children. It does take a little time and effort, but it is worth it for everyone.

IdahoSTARS: Knowing “success” is not only being measured by step advancement, in what ways other than a step rating have you measured your success in Steps to Quality?

Maurer: I am proud of my daycare and myself for what I have accomplished. I went from a “baby sitter” to a full-function daycare and state-approved care provider. I understand children and the business better. I believe the children enjoy being here and spending time with me. I feel they learn, and the parents are satisfied with the care I provide.

IdahoSTARS: What challenges did you face to reaching the higher steps of Steps to Quality? How did you overcome those challenges?

Maurer: At first, I did not want to invest the time in classes, because I have my own family, or the money to provide some of the required things. I hate paperwork and keeping records. However, once you get used to it, it is not that bad. Taking the time to learn and incorporate good practices, time management, and using grants were some to the big ways I overcame (challenges).

IdahoSTARS: What motivated you to participate in Steps to Quality? In what ways did you utilize regional office or coaching supports to help you increase quality in your facility?

Maurer: I love learning and improving myself. I also enjoy the financial motivation. I enjoy the knowledge of the people who have been able to coach me and come by for visits. I used to call often for information. I was a little nervous when I first started on how everything was supposed to work. I was always asking questions.

Thanks for reading! If you haven’t already, please join our Steps to Quality (STQ) program for free coaching support, a transparent process, eligibility for grants and monetary recognition, and your center name promoted on our website.  Where to start? 1. Login to your RISE account. 2. Select the Help tab. 3. Click on Steps to Quality.