A one-stop-shop for all childcare services. That is what’s in store when Revelstoke’s Neighbourhood Learning Centre opens its doors inside Begbie View Elementary school on Monday.
The new centre will see a number of childcare programs relocate to the same wing of the new school building, providing parents with one location for all childcare needs.
“It’s providing seemless childcare on site at an elementary school that will enhance services for family,” said Linda Chell, the executive director of the Revelstoke Child Care Society.
The centre will include:
The Child Care Resource and Referral program
The early learning lending library
The four cornerstones child care centres: Infant-Toddler Care, Group 3–5 care, pre-school and school-age
Strong Start Early Learning Centre
Leap Land Indoor Playground
The offices of the Revelstoke Child Care Society
The Columbia Basian Alliance for Literacy programs
Public health nurse’s office
The two kindergarten classroom’s of Begbie View Elementary are also located in the early learning wing. “That was a conscious decision,” said Anne Cooper, the superintendent of the Revelstoke School District.
What will it mean to have all these services in one place? Previously programs were divided into separate locations, with some at the Farwell School and others scattered elsewhere.
For Chell, it means parents can drop off one kid at kindergarten, another in pre-school and visit the lending library or public health nurse all at once.
“For parents its one-stop access,” she said. “All within a state-of-the-art LEED gold standard building that’s designed for children and families.”
It will also provide even greater connections between early-learning care providers and elementary school teachers and staff. “We already work very closely with the kindergarten teachers so now we’ll just expand that to the rest of the school,” Chell said.
For the school district, the benefits will come in getting to know parents and children at a very young age, said Cooper.
“I think the ability in this school to serve families with infants right through to grade seven, I think we’re going to form relationships with families at this particular school based on the NLC concept, the early-learning hub we don’t have in our other schools,” she said. I think that’s going to be a really unique experience and I’m looking forward to seeing how that unfolds over the years to come.”