A childcare facilitator at the Children’s Learning Center (CLC) at Moraine Valley Community College is one of four educators in the state named 2017 Children’s Champions by the Illinois Association for the Education of Young Children.
Carol Kackert, who has taught at the CLC for more than 30 years, was recognized as an outstanding early childhood leader through a special proclamation in the Illinois General Assembly and received her award at a ceremony in Springfield in May. She was nominated by the South Suburban Association for the Education of Young Children, where she has served on the board and various committees for more than 15 years. Fellow board member Vita Bates cited Kackert’s dedication to children as one of the qualifiers for the award. “Carol has a true passion for children, and it goes beyond the professional level as she is raising four of her own grandchildren,” Bates said.
Kackert said she is elated to be recognized by her colleagues. “I’m very excited to get this award,” she said. “I feel like I made a mark and that makes me proud. I’m trying to make things better for all children, and at different levels I think I’m doing that. It feels good.”
Denise Lumpkin, CLC director, said Kackert truly is a children’s champion. “Her genuine love for children is so evident in her daily interactions with them. When most of the children in her class leave at the end of the day, they must stop and give their beloved Ms. Carol a hug, as if they need that one last contact with her to tide them over until they see her again,” she said.