Holy cow, we got accredited! And not just barely, either. You only have to pass around 80% of the requirements and we had everything in the 90s% or 100%. Our classroom got a measly 94%! Woo hoo!
The visitation day was less stressful than I thought it would be. The visitor came to rooms based on a pre-printed schedule. She took notes and looked in cabinets and on shelves, but what was really nice is that she sat on the floor and talked with any child who wandered over. I wouldn't say she was overly friendly because she had a lot of paperwork to do, but she paused whenever a kiddo came over. She was really, really nice.
Since our program is part time she spent the mornings in the classrooms and the afternoons going through portfolios. I'm so glad I'm not her! The portfolio business didn't look like much fun, and since I know what was in mine I feel very sorry for her.
The areas where NAEYC felt we had room for improvement were science and technology. The technology part I totally get. Because many of our families are middle class or in grad school the program has made a decision not to have computers and televisions in the classrooms. The kids are only with us for a few mornings a week, so we feel it's more important to give them experiences and interactions than technology, which they will likely get at home. As for the science, all I can say is that many of us may have unconsciously chosen less-messy activities on the visitation days in case we needed to answer the visitor's questions, therefore making it more difficult for us to demonstrate our commitment to science education.
Many of us felt that as long as we did well on health and safety that our program would pretty much speak for itself. I think I agree in that the classroom visits probably would have gone well even without all our stressing. We do a pretty good job in keeping up with the current requirements on an ongoing basis. I know in our classroom we only made minor changes and I don't think they were all that critical.
So, for those of you going through this now, good luck! You can do it!