A glimpse of SCC-CAAEYC History...
Honoring Betty Mott
A petite but powerful pioneer advocate for quality early childhood education died at age 102 in September 2020. The Southern California Chapter of the California Association for the Education of Young Children (SCC-CAAEYC) is proud to honor Betty for her many contributions to our field, but especially during April 2021, the 50th Anniversary of the WEEK OF THE YOUNG CHILD, which had its beginnings in Betty’s creative imagination.
Betty dreamed up the idea as a way of highlighting the importance of the early years, and it quickly caught on here in California and was adopted by our parent organization, the National Association for the Education of Young Children.
In addition, Betty was the Director of the Kathleen Mott Play Center in Santa Monica for 30 years, a program originally established by her husband, George Mott, and her mother-in-law, Kathleen Mott to meet the needs of young children with disabilities. The program, which then became one of the early nursery schools in Santa Monica, is still in existence today and continues to exemplify the high-quality early childhood practices which Betty believed in so strongly. Betty was also instrumental in the establishment of the Early Childhood Education Program at Santa Monica College and served as the second President of the North Bay Chapter of The Southern California Association for the Education of Young Children.
In her retirement years, Betty was a co-founder and active volunteer of the California Heritage Museum in Santa Monica. She was a wonderful friend to many in our field, and a visit to her home was always sure to be memorable for its delicious food and wide-ranging conversation, but most of all for Betty’s loving and sparkling personality.
With hearty thanks to her daughter Bonnie Etz, and colleague Linda Gordon for their contributions to this article.
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