Step Up To Quality Stories

Spend Quality Time with Us

We’re thrilled to announce the launch of our podcast, Quality Time!

We decided to create a podcast for many reasons. We noticed there aren’t a lot of podcasts directed to early childhood education providers. And none targeted specifically for providers in Nebraska. We’ve also seen podcasts grow in popularity, so we wanted to tell the Step Up to Quality story in this impactful and personal way.

We are fortunate to have the most wonderful host for Quality Time. Colleen Schmit, an educator, speaker, author and an observer with Step Up to Quality. In each episode of Quality Time, Colleen interviews different early childhood education professionals from across the state.

Each episode will focus on uplifting those in early childhood education — providing a self-care space, showing appreciation for professionals in the field and giving you a new platform to learn from others in Nebraska. And we know your time is valuable, so each episode is about 30 minutes, give or take.

The inaugural guests are from our own team — Lauri Cimino, director of Step Up to Quality, Lynne Cook, the coach specialist, and Jenny Fleming, the quality specialist, talk about their own journeys in the field, discuss what it’s like to participate in Step Up to Quality, and express their gratitude for early childhood professionals.

Subscribe to the Step Up to Quality provider newsletter using the button below to get early access to our first episode. We’ll send out the first episode to newsletter subscribers on Tuesday, October 18th!

Future episodes for this first season will be released every other week, including topics like the importance of coaching, continuing your learning journey and more. This is a two-way conversation, so please let us know what you think of the podcast and what you’d like to hear in future episodes by emailing us at

We hope this podcast will make you feel seen and appreciated, because that’s exactly why it was made. We look forward to spending Quality Time with you!