In this inspirational episode, we hear from Kris’s very first client Alison Pfeister and her daughter Alexandra Kroon. Their school, the TLC Academy for Young Children in Hudson, Ohio is a family owned business, founded by Alison and her husband in 1989 after the birth of Alexandra, who now serves as the director. Alison shares the story of how TLC continues to be successful after many years, highlights of her journey as an early child care business owner, and provides resources and inspiration for building a culture of play, respect, and transparency.
Key Takeaways From This Podcast:
Big announcement — the company name has changed! The Child Care Success Company is in the process of transitioning to be The Child Care Success Company. Kris couldn’t be more excited for the rebrand and it fits the mission and vision perfectly.
Alison and her husband Kent decided to create their own child development center that would provide the best in care and education. They couldn’t find one that they felt 100% certain about, so they put their careers on hold and renovated a church. They opened TLC in March of 1990. Their daughter Alexandra was the first baby, and now she is the director. They used her as the standard and now it’s come three generations, with Alexandra’s children attending the school as well.
Typically, the cycle of enrollment tightly follows employment and jobs in this country. That is a major reason why schools must work hard to become recession-proof and build the strength of their business.
TLC is at 75-80 max capacity with a high retention rate, and it has been almost 30 years since the doors of TLC first sprang open, but the motto remains the same: The best is the least we can do for your child.
Kris and her team’s vision is to make a difference in the lives of one million children. They are in the process of tracking exactly how many, but they think they’ve touched 750,000 children so far!
A cool feature of TLC is their mud kitchen. Along with a garden, components of an outdoor classroom, a farm-to-table program and walking field trips. Experiential learning is very important and they like to foster a connection with nature.
At TLC, they encourage teachers to remember that each child is different and it’s important to be flexible when coming up with solutions.
Consistency in training is important, and letting the teachers feel heard is one of the ways they can keep them healthy and happy. TLC also offers professional development, organizational structure, and the blessing to grow and learn as needed.
To Alison and Alexandra, being a child care rockstar is someone that has the ability to create safety for the children and the patience and dedication to develop a bond with both the child and their parents.
College programs with young ECE students are often great resources for student teachers.