Francis Institute

Since the 1970's, Metropolitan Community College-Penn Valley (MCC-Penn Valley) has offered college credit classes through the vocational program known as child growth and development.

In 1990, several community leaders and educators embarked on a journey to increase the quality of care for children by providing accessible and affordable education and professional development opportunities to adults working in the field. A unique partnership was formed by MCC-Penn Valley, the Francis Family Foundation, the Greater Kansas City Community Foundation, Affiliated Trusts and KCMC Child Development Corporation. Through this collaboration, the Francis Institute Resource Center was created to provide on-site technical assistance, education and training for early childhood and afterschool providers.

In 1995, with a lead gift from the Francis Family Foundation, a state-of-the art child care center was built to complement the existing Associate of Applied Science (A.A.S.) program, providing students with opportunities for internships and observation. This addition allowed all of the Francis Institute's services to be housed in one area; bringing new and existing programs under one umbrella and forming a three-tier entity which encompasses the Early Childhood Education and Development (ECED) Program, the child care center and the Francis Institute Resource Center.

Today, the Francis Institute provides trainings and resources for centers in the Kansas City area.

Francis Institute Principles

  1. Excellence: We are accountable for the work that we do and are committed to achieving results and positive outcomes. We strive to model "best practices" in the field.
  2. Diversity: We respect the importance of each individual's culture, religion, ethnicity, and lifestyle choice.
  3. Respect: We treat each person honestly with fairness, dignity and compassion.
  4. Collaboration: We work in cooperation with others to strengthen the profession and the community to make the best use of our resources.
  5. Professionalism: We are competent and highly skilled in our field, and we aspire to the highest quality in everything we do.
  6. Accessibility: We offer services that are affordable and available through a variety of delivery methods.
  7. Creativity: We explore and develop innovative ways to enhance our programs.


Francis Institute Resource Center

The Francis Institute has access to hundreds of resources on many different topics. Some of the topics include curriculums, classroom environments, assessment, as well as activities based on language and literacy, math, science and a variety of other content areas.

If you’d like to access the materials or have questions or recommendations for other resources, contact us.