NAEYC Restructure Update

I wanted to update you on the amazing work which was done on your behalf this past weekend in Urbana as we move through the restructuring process with NAEYC.  
25 people representing 13 of 17 affiliates met on Friday night and worked tirelessly until 10 PM and began work again for 5 hours on Saturday as well as attending the quarterly board meeting. We had 27 people participating in the work on Saturday.  We were well fed thanks to the generosity of:  Jan Deissler, Rhonda Costa, Jackie Farber, Heart of Illinois AEYC and Betsy Mitchell!  We needed plenty of sustenance to help us get through all of the hard work!
I’d like to highlight our accomplishments:

  • Reviewed several state agreements between affiliates and chapters
  • Worked in small groups to decide what would work/not work in Illinois
  • Devised an outline for a template for the affiliate-chapter agreement in Illinois
  • Brainstormed the geographic layout of chapters in Illinois and the under served areas

WHEW!  It was a whirlwind weekend and I believe that everyone in attendance was on a high  upon leaving Urbana! Our big AH HA moment was during our discussion of the Illinois map.  We realized that our MEMBERS are the heart of our work, not the chapter location, and when we realized this, our work became crystal clear!  You could feel the energy as this realization filtered through the room!  Here are some member comments as we ended the day:
We came here as us/them and are leaving united.”
“There were no right/wrong ideas; no one feeling they were in charge.”
“This was a very collaborative and congenial meeting.”
“I enjoyed working in small groups with diversity from around the state; it was nice to learn from mentors in the state.”
“This was new to me and very inviting.”
“We have the potential to be a great presence.”
“It is important to hang together to see this process through."
No doubt we still have much work to be done.  An ad hoc committee will be forming and will continue to hammer out the format of the draft template to have ready for approval at the June board meeting.  Meanwhile, please check in with your local affiliate to see how you can become involved with this process.  
We will continue to keep you informed and if you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me at or Tonya Frehner at
Thank you for all you do on behalf of the children in Illinois!  



Carol Weisheit

Illinois AEYC President

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