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Adams County Communities for Kids launches survey to evaluate early childcare, educational programs

Published: Sep. 16, 2020 at 5:56 PM CDT
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HASTINGS, Neb. (KSNB) - Adams County Communities for Kids is looking to improve early childhood care in the area and wants the public’s input.

The group launched a survey to get people’s thoughts on what they feel is needed for quality childcare and educational opportunities throughout Adams County. The survey is anonymous and asks a variety of questions, from programming needs to thoughts on childcare costs.

Wendy Keele, the program liaison, said the need for quality early childhood care is a pressing concern, especially for infants.

“It builds on everything that a child is going to need for the rest of their life,” Keele said. “So we really want secure, well-developed, emotionally stable children so that when they start going into kindergarten they’re ready to learn.”

The goal of the survey is to see what people’s perceptions are in different towns and to see how Communities for Kids can help in moving forward.

Keele said not all rural towns have licensed providers. The group will see if that’s a concern based on responses in the survey.

“It’s very difficult, because a lot of people from the smaller communities come to Hastings," Keele said. "So they may bring their children there, but there are a lot of good reasons to have them in that hometown as well. We’re trying to find out what the needs are.”

Keele said Kenesaw is one of the areas that has licensed providers. She said Communities for Kids is working with a group there to bring a larger program to the area based on what’s supported in the survey.

The first three years of life are crucial to a child’s development, which is why Keele said it’s important to have strong early childhood programs for families.

The survey opened Monday. Keele said they’ve received about 100 responses so far. The survey will remain open for three weeks. Anyone within Adams County is welcome to participate.

The Adams County Communities for Kids is made up of 25 individuals form many walks of life, including daycare providers, nonprofits, educators and businesses. The organization is funded through the Nebraska Children and Families Foundation, which will send survey results on a weekly basis.

Copyright 2020 KSNB. All rights reserved.

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