Karen Woland Payne, director of the Children’s Learning Center at Pennsylvania College of Technology, was named the Central Susquehanna Association for the Education of Young Children’s “2008 Outstanding Early Educator.”
Payne, a longtime member and former president of the association, received the honor during the group’s annual conference, held April 5 on the Penn College campus.
“Karen brings to the early care education field a strong work ethic and commitment to quality care for all children not just the ones enrolled in her particular center,” her nominator wrote. “What sets Karen apart from others is her vision of how to achieve quality care. Her expertise is not (used) for self-promotion, but is used in service to other professionals. While many speak of advocacy Karen puts action with the words.”
Payne has led the Children’s Learning Center in earning accreditation from both the National Association for the Education of Young Children and the Middle States Commission on Elementary Education. These awards have allowed the center to also achieve a Four Star rating in the state’s Keystone Stars program.
Beyond the Children’s Learning Center, she was instrumental in forming the Central Susquehanna Association for the Education of Young Children, is a member of the Lycoming County Engagement Committee, serves on the advisory board for the Milton School District child development program and is completing a term on the Head Start Policy Council.
She regularly attends conferences and professional training and has assisted other centers to achieve accreditation by offering workshops and advice.