Mid-State’s Children’s Learning Center (CLC) opened in 2007 as a small childcare center to support the recruitment of quality health care workers to the region. At this time, enrollment is open to anyone in the community and currently serves 22 children. While Mid-State’s mission is to ensure access to high-quality primary care regardless of ability to pay, the health and wellbeing of the community’s children cannot be overlooked. A feasibility assessment conducted in 2020 identified that 75% of the region’s infant and toddler childcare needs are currently unmet and a recent regional plan identifies access to childcare as a barrier to full-time employment in our rural region – a barrier that has grown exponentially during the pandemic.
Mid-State’s Board of Directors has risen to meet this need of our community and take a step forward in creating a solution by recognizing that a new, and larger, facility is essential in order to meet the rising demand for childcare. Mid-State has purchased, and will begin renovating, an existing 8,400 square foot building located at 742 Tenney Mountain Highway as the new home for the Children’s Learning Center. This expansion will enable the CLC to serve more families and increase capacity from 20 to 60+ children, with a particular focus to serve 51% low to moderate income families. I do not believe I am alone when I say we here at Mid-State, the community at large, including business owners, parents, and children alike, are eager for this project to get underway and be ready to accommodate our area’s youth by fall 2021.
The new center will build on our approach to childcare through an innovative care experience in a safe and supportive environment that will benefit the children of our rural region. Plans have been secured to build an energy-efficient facility with indoor and outdoor playground areas and ample classroom space. The state-of-the-art facility will not only serve as a safe haven for our community’s children, but as a learning environment. The facility is specially designed to support educational opportunities for children that promote personal health and environmental wellness, and the connection between the two.
We hope you will follow our progress as we anticipate completion later this year. Soon you will begin seeing plans, opportunities to participate in naming the new facility, marketing/logo roll out, child care enrollment information, capital campaign details, fundraising opportunities, events and more.
Mid-State looks forward to sharing our progress on the CLC expansion with our community in the months ahead.
Chief Executive Officer