By RACHEL PONDER, APG NewsJuly 30, 2009
To keep up with the growing demand for childcare on Aberdeen Proving Ground, parents who work and live here now have a new option for child care. Child, Youth & School Services opened a new Child Development Home for hourly child care for children ages 6 weeks to 5 years old, located in the Aberdeen Area at 3809E Pride Court.
The home, which opened July 13, is for all military, Department of Defense civilians and contractors assigned to APG.
The home had an open house on July 9 and 10 for parents and children to see the facility and to talk to child care providers, Tiffany Sanders a program lead, and Lisanne Blake, a training and curriculum specialist.
Blake said that the home will follow the Creative Curriculum, a comprehensive early childhood educational system that has been shown to promote the cognitive, language, social/emotional and physical development of young children. This program is credited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children.
Blake said that the children will do a variety of activities that are both fun and educational.
The home has an assortment of toys that children can play with, and a playground a short walk from the home.
Jennifer Ford, mother to Janelle Ford, who is 17 months old, said that she plans to take her daughter to the home twice a week so that she can learn new things by playing with other children.
"My daughter will enjoy coming to play with other kids and different toys," she said. "Plus it gives me a little break."
Rachel Hane, mother to Johnathan, 3, and William, 2, said that she is happy that the home is in a convenient location.
"I live in the neighborhood, so we can walk to the home," she said. "I plan to take my children here on days that I need to study." Hane is currently persuing a degree in early childhood education.
Angie Cumming, mother to Evie, 3, and Grant, 20 months, said that she is glad that they have a child development home on post because she feels like her son will feel more at ease with the small group setting.
"My son has separation anxiety, and I feel like he will feel less intimidated in a smaller group," she said.
Sanders, who will be taking care of the children full-time, along with an assistant, said that the limit of the number of children who can stay in the home is eight, with no more than two children under the age of two at one time.
In order for children to stay at the Child Development Home they must be registered in the CYS Services hourly program. To register, contact Central Registration, 410-278-7571/7479. Registration is free.
The hourly fee is $4 per child. Discounts are available for children of Soldiers deployed in the Global War on Terrorism through the Army Family Covenant.
"This is a very reasonable price for childcare," Blake said.
All reservations and payments will be made at the Aberdeen Area Child Development Center, building 2485, in person or by phone at 410-278-5748.
Operating hours for the home are 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. A healthy breakfast snack, lunch and an afternoon snack will be provided under the guidelines of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Childcare is available up to 25 hours a week. Reservations can be made the day of, up to 1 week in advance or through a monthly calendar. Calendar reservations may be made 7 days prior to the beginning of the month.
Blake added that more CYSS facilities will be built in the future, as the number of people who work on APG will grow due to base realignment and closure.
"We couldn't have done it without the support of the Army Family Covenant," Blake said. "It was instrumental in providing all the supplies and equipment necessary for the Child Development Home."