CYSS celebrates grand opening of new campus
June 30, 2011
By Amy Perry
FORT LEE, Va. (June 30, 2011) -- Child, Youth and School Services held a ribbon-cutting and grand opening of its new CYSS campus June 24 in front of Child Development Center Sisisky.
CDC Sisisky is the latest center to open as part of the campus. Due to open soon is a multi-purpose center that will offer hourly care, part-time preschool, two large multi-purpose rooms, two activity rooms, a computer lab and a kitchen for cooking demonstrations. The center will offer space for SKIES classes and the kindergarten before- and after-school program.
Soon, construction will begin on a new Youth Center, also located in the new campus area, which will allow the youth and school-aged children to have their own separate facilities.
"Our newly established CYSS Campus, with all facilities co-located in one area, is convenient for parents, supports management by (having everything in walking distance), allows for cross training of staff to support each other and provides a seamless delivery of all CYSS programs ... very similar to a college campus," said Donna Nelson, CYSS chief.
Another change is the relocation of the Parent Central Services, a special administrative area in the new CDC Sisisky.
"The new admin area provides space for the increase in administrative support staff due to the CYSS growth," said Nelson. "The Parent Central Services is better designed with separate areas (for more privacy) for parents to complete the registration process."
These new centers increase the child care spaces for children aged 6 weeks - 5 years by 35 percent, said Nelson.
"It helps us better meet demand," she said. "The wait list has been reduced by 60 percent, and we have been able to offer new options, such as part-day day care."
During the ceremony, Maj. Leona Brown, CYSS Parent Advisory Council chairperson, said the grand opening was a special day for the military members and families on Fort Lee.
"I'm sure all of us who are parents and have had the benefit of child development centers know how important it is to have quality child development services available," said Brown. "With the reassurance that our children are being well cared for and learn new things each day in a secure and stimulating environment, we are better able to focus on our own work and deal with life's other daily challenges."
The new campus is a major investment in the next generation of Fort Lee children, said Brown.
"There's no more important work than providing a firm foundation for our children's futures," she said. "When they attend these facilities, we know they are in a good and safe place. As a Soldier and parent, I know how important the CYSS services are and how much we depend on them each day."
Col. Michael G. Morrow, U.S. Army Garrison, Fort Lee commander, took time during the ceremony to recognize those who worked on the CYSS campus and said it was amazing to see the new centers and the work done by the CYSS staff.
"The CYSS staff is truly dedicated and committed to the care and development of our children," he said. "The continued patronage points to how good an organization it is. It really attests to the quality of the CYSS program."