CDC reopens, plans to double enrollment in 2024

By Anissa Connell, Garrison Public Affairs OfficeSeptember 26, 2023

CDC reopens, plans to double enrollment in 2024
FORT CARSON, Colo. — Armanda Hunt, Fort Carson Child and Youth Services coordinator, cuts the ceremonial ribbon to reopen the Cheyenne Mountain Child Development Center Sept. 22, 2023. (Photo Credit: Anissa Connell) VIEW ORIGINAL

FORT CARSON, Colo. — The Cheyenne Mountain Child Development Center (CDC) reopened Sept. 22, 2023, after being closed for 10 months due to staffing shortages.

“As COVID-19 came about, many child care facilities on and off the installation experienced staffing shortages as a result (of making) sure the programs that we could run were healthy and fully staffed,” said Armanda Hunt, Child and Youth Services (CYS) coordinator.

The Cheyenne Mountain CDC was able to reopen after CYS staffing increased from 58% to 81%. Hunt credits the boost in employment to new incentives offered to CYS employees. These incentives included offering 100% employee discount on child care for one child, allowing CYS employees access to the commissary and various recruitment and retention bonuses.

There are currently 20 child care providers at the Cheyenne Mountain CDC, but that number will double with more child care spaces becoming available in January.

The center has 80 pre-kindergarten aged children enrolled, with an additional 80 spaces opening in January to serve children 6 weeks to 5 years of age.

“We're also helping (children) transition into different areas like being more independent, making more choices, and communicating with Families and other children,” said Heidi Metzger-Morris, child care provider at Cheyenne Mountain CDC. “So, we have a great opportunity for a great learning environment.”

The CDC focuses on Strong Beginnings, which prepares children for kindergarten. The program focuses on teaching math, social studies, beginning reading, writing skills and good manners.

One of the biggest upgrades to the facility includes new furniture to accommodate the Strong Beginnings curriculum.

“The natural room, scientific room and the arts room require pieces of equipment that were all purchased brand new because of the type of programs we're offering out of this facility now,” said Hunt.

Cheyenne Mountain CDC’s reopening allows Families to go to work with the peace of mind that their children are cared for in a safe, nurturing and learning environment so they can focus on their mission.

“We want everybody to know about Strong Beginnings and to come out and see the program, take a tour, ask questions, get to know us and really just embrace CYS as we embrace the community,” said Hunt.

To learn more about CYS programs and services, visit or call 719-526-8220.