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KinderCare

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at KinderCare

Your child belongs in our circle. 

No matter how little your child is, you have big dreams for their future. So do we. At the heart of it all is making sure they grow up to be happy, show kindness to others, and make the world a better place.   

Children of all ages are able to learn how to practice empathy, compassion, and understanding. And everything they do—from reading books and making art to even having lunch—can be experienced through an inclusive lens.  

Browse through this page to learn how we approach educating early learners on the fundamentals of acceptance, how we normalize differences in our classrooms, and how we honor diversity both inside and outside of our community. You’ll also find resources for bringing diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) lessons home. 

Bring DEI education home. 

Teaching empathy, compassion and understanding to kids is much easier than you think! In fact, you may be doing a lot of it already. Click through the tabs below to get more ideas on how to bring important lessons from our classrooms to your living room!  
 
If your child is in our programs, we’ll keep you current on what we’re teaching, so you can extend DEI learning at home.

It’s never too early to learn about diversity, equity, and inclusion!

Babies begin to notice physical differences in others by three months of age. So, take this early opportunity to start small. The lessons they learn now will build on new ones as your child grows, helping them develop a foundation for empathy, compassion, and understanding. 

  • Introduce diverse experiences. Read books that show different cultures, identities, and characters than those in your own home, tune the radio to new music genres, and share little tastes of food with a wide variety of flavors from different cuisines. These small experiences build on each other, creating new thought patterns that help your child see differences as attributes.  

  • Point out “same” and “different”. Bring your baby’s attention to things they can see that are different and the same about themselves and yourself! Pointing to and naming parts of your body that are the same (i.e., your nose, my nose) or describing the qualities that are different (i.e., small hands, big hands), can help your child learn to appreciate and accept the ways we are alike and unique. 

  • Name feelings in themselves and others. When your child’s expressing big feelings, give them a name (i.e., “I see that loud noise made you feel scared”) so you can help them notice that feeling in others (i.e., “Your friend feels scared right now. Remember when you felt scared?”). When you create opportunities for empathy and understanding, you can help interrupt the development of biases before they start.

Integrate diversity into your child’s life (in big and small ways).

Now that you’ve planted the seeds of acceptance with your child (check out our Babies and Toddlers tab for more info), they're ready to practice looking at everyday moments from other points of view.  

Exposing your child to new experiences lays the foundation for empathy and compassion. Then, you can take the learning even further by talking with your kids about these experiences and relating them to the teachable moments that arise in your daily lives. 

  • Explore activities outside your neighborhood, like music class or gymnastics practice where you’ll broaden your family’s potential for meeting new groups of people, making fresh connections, and building diverse friendships. 

  • Seek out community events that celebrate cultures, holidays, and observances that are different from yours. Look to your local library for ideas—sometimes they also have free resources and events. 

  • Point out stereotypes and biases when you see them in media and books (for example, who is and isn’t represented in roles like doctors, lawyers, firefighters, villains, and heroes). 

  • Practice being upstanders together, and role-play things you can do or say when someone isn’t being treated respectfully. 

  • Don’t forget to focus on feelings that tie back to empathy and compassion! For example, “How did you feel when you saw that your friend was sad?” 

Involve older children in conversations about fairness and justice.

School-age kids are all about flexing their independence and expressing their individuality. You can open your elementary-schooler's mind by encouraging them to reflect on their own privilege and areas where they lack privilege to help them better understand other people, perspectives, and cultures. 

Talking about fairness and justice is a hot topic at this age (which is why you might hear “That’s not fair” more often)! That makes the concepts of equity and equality easy for them to relate to.  

  • Define the difference between equality and equity. To put it simply: Equality is when everyone gets the same thing. Equity is when everyone gets what they need to be successful. Together with your child, come up with three ways that equity helps us achieve equality!

  • Introduce the idea of privilege.  This concept can seem daunting, even for grownups, so try to approach it in bite-sized pieces. One way to get started is to write a list of everything your child is grateful for. Then use each item on that list to start a conversation: “I see you wrote you’re grateful for our house. So am I! There are some people in our community who don’t have that—why do you think that is?” Using relatable and tangible examples of privilege can help all of us notice it and understand what causes it.

  • Find examples in everyday life. Challenge your child to look for moments or places when they notice equity and equality in the world. Examples for where to start: handicapped parking spaces, over-sized bathroom stalls, Braille in elevators, and inclusive swings at the park. 

  • Keep the conversation going as things come up in the news or in your community—your child’s opinions and ideas might surprise you! 

What does DEI mean for kids in our classrooms and centers?

Respecting all kinds of families, and fostering a safe, welcoming community is foundational to who we are. In big cities and small towns, families come to us from every walk of life. When you join us, we’re committed to valuing the experiences and traditions you bring with you and honoring them within our community. We do this by: 

  • Using classroom materials that reflect diverse identities. 

  • Creating accessible and equitable spaces, made possible with the support of our Inclusion Services team. 

  • Educating children to help them recognize and speak out against unfairness, injustice, and prejudice.

  • Providing support and other accommodations for children with varying needs and abilities. 

Learning never stops for our teachers, either. Get a glimpse of their continuing education journey. Culturally Responsive Teaching leads to deeper, more meaningful connections with your child!


KinderCare is a place that welcomes every race, gender, religion, mobility, ability, sexual identity, and family structure. We strive to create a place where every child can thrive and feel confident in who they are.

Celebrating our commonalities and differences

Our curriculum creates opportunities for little learners to build understanding and knowledge of people around the globe and in our own communities. In addition to celebrating traditional American holidays like Christmas and New Year's Day, we also recognize special days and months throughout the year to build stronger connections that acknowledge our commonalities and celebrate our differences. See below on how to bring some of these learnings home all year long!

JANUARY–MARCH

During the winter months, we welcome the new year while honoring our heritage, and dreaming big. 

-February is Black History Month
-March is National Women’s History Month

APRIL–JUNE

Spring salutes our past while looking forward to creating a more inclusive world.  

-June is PRIDE Month

JULY–SEPTEMBER

Summer looks back at our history to build a more equitable tomorrow. 

-Hispanic Heritage Month (Sept. 15-Oct. 15) 
-July is for Disability Pride

OCTOBER–DECEMBER

Fall celebrates the rich history and traditions that surround us. 

Doing what’s right for our employees and our community.

Kids aren’t the only ones learning at KinderCare! Education is a lifelong journey, and we are committed to learning about and creating diverse, equitable, and inclusive spaces for all of our employees. In addition to leaning in and listening to our employees, as well as honoring their experiences, we’re working on taking meaningful steps forward in our DEI journey in ways that benefit our students, families, employees, and the communities where we work and live.  

“It’s our responsibility to challenge ourselves to do the work and nurture a diverse and inclusive environment, one where our employees and the children and families we serve are seen, heard, and valued.” 

–KinderCare Education Chairman and CEO Tom Wyatt. 
 
Here are a few things we’re doing right now: 

  • Giving our employees space to be heard and opportunities to learn with employee resource groups and training. 

  • Working with experts in the DEI field to help us identify areas for improvement and define a way forward. 

  • Partnering with underrepresented groups within our company and assigning a leadership caucus to represent interests within our business. 

  • Supporting local communities through partnerships that place importance on education equity, early childhood literacy, whole-child health, and more. 

  • Assisting families of all kinds with child care through benefits programs and subsidies that can help offset the cost of care. 

 When we all work together, we get closer to creating an inclusive community for all.

View videos from our students and staff. 

Continuing our commitment to listening and learning, our KinderCare family shows how we honor each other all year long.