Johanna Hartnett ’76, M.S.Ed. ’03, who has directed the SUNY Cortland Child Care Center for almost 13 years, will retire on Friday, June 21.
Hartnett will remain with the center as a consultant to assist in the transition of Nicole Brooks into the position. Brooks began her duties on May 3.
In 2000, Hartnett took on her current position with the center, Cortland County’s only nationally accredited child care agency.
Hartnett joined SUNY Cortland with approximately nine years of day care administrative experience and many more as a teacher of young children.
The center, which turned 20 years old on Jan. 11, serves approximately 100 infants and youngsters between the ages of six weeks and five years from Cortland and neighboring counties while providing a living laboratory for generations of the College’s future educators and professionals. The program typically maintains a waiting list for children to enroll.
Hartnett supervises a staff of about 20 full-time and 20 part-time employees. Under her leadership, the center has maintained its continuous accreditation by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC), which sets the criteria used to measure quality practices for the top child care centers in the United States. NAEYC first accredited the center in 1996 and re-accredited it in 2000, 2003 and 2008. The program will be evaluated for a fifth time in September. Hartnett also works to ensure the center remains licensed with the New York State Office of Child and Family Services.
In 2009, Hartnett oversaw the relocation and expansion of the day care operation from five rooms in the lower floors of the student residential complex, Casey and Smith Halls, to eight rooms on the ground floor of the College’s newly constructed School of Education Building. With the move, the center was able to begin accommodating 35 additional children.
During the past six summers, the center also has operated a school-age camp licensed for 20 children.
While at SUNY Cortland, Hartnett has served as an adjunct lecturer in the Childhood/Early Childhood Education Department and taught as an adjunct professor at Tompkins Cortland Community College and Cazenovia College.
For many years, Hartnett has been active on the board of the Cortland Area Child Care Council and a member of the board of the Cortland Association for the Education of Young Children. She is a member of the NAEYC. Hartnett was president elect, secretary and treasurer for the New York State Coalition of Child Care Centers and served on the executive board of SUNY Directors for the past five years.
She previously directed the SUNY Upstate Child Care Center, another NAEYC-accredited facility, from 1998 to 2000. Hartnett was the assistant director of services for young children with The Racker Center in Cortland from 1994 to 1998.
She earned an Associate of Arts in Liberal Arts from Cayuga Community College. Hartnett graduated with honors with a Bachelor of Arts in Secondary Education: Spanish and a Master of Science in Education in Literacy from SUNY Cortland.
A resident of Cortland, she enjoys reading, walking, swimming and spending time with her children and grandchildren.