900 South Pine Street
Spartanburg, SC 29302
First Steps

“High quality learning programs ensure that children get the skills and education needed to be successful in life. Investing in the early years produces better health, education, social, and economic outcomes.”

Molly Talbot-Metz, MPH, Vice President of Programs, Mary Black Foundation


The evidence is clear.

Early childhood research matters—Quality Counts matters—because a child doesn’t get the option of repeating the first 4 years of his or her life. That means the time to act is now.

40 decades of research indicate best practices in child care and early learning, promoting healthy brain development and the importance of quality learning environments. Quality Counts strives to implement these best practices in participating programs across Spartanburg County to create a stronger, healthier community. Preparing for the future means investing in our young children today.

Choosing Quality Care

NAEYC: What to Look for in Child Care
Child Care Aware: Choosing Child Care
Quality Counts: Child Care Checklist

Classroom Best Practices

NAEYC: Developmentally Appropriate Practice
Community Playthings: Learning Environments
Caring for Our Children National Health and Safety Performance Standards

What the Experts Say

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Learn the Signs. Act Early.
American Academy of Pediatrics: Information for Parents
Consumer Product Safety Commission

Quick Links

Safe Kids
South Carolina First Steps
South Carolina Child Care Services

Current Research

Community Playthings: Inclusion: Finding a Common Understanding
Harvard’s Center on the Developing Child: Young Children Develop in an Environment of Relationships
Alliance for Childhood: Reading Instruction in Kindergarten: Little to Gain and Much to Lose