Adams Central provides childcare for school district

Local4 News at 5
Published: Sep. 27, 2023 at 7:10 PM CDT
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JUNIATA, Neb. (KSNB) - On Aug. 7, the Adams Central School District added daycare in hopes to make childcare more accessible for the district. The school district had partnered with the Adams Central Foundation and received a $70,000 grant from DHHS for repairs to the building in Juniata.

The idea came about when parents started asking for childcare transportation.

The district’s daycare is open Monday through Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. It’s $40 per day, and $8 per hour for partial care.

In order to have daycare service, your child must be enrolled in preschool at Adams Central Early Childhood Center. Early Childhood Administrator, Susan Lindblad said there are approximately 50 kids attending on a regular basis, and they’re licensed for up to 55 per day.

Their peak hours are after school between 3 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. She said there can be up to 35 kids during that time, and learning is play-based.

“It is following the child on their investigation of the world of their interactions with the world, and we try to take that whole child approach,” Lindblad said. “So they are seeing things, they’re hearing about them, they are creating them, they are interacting.”

Superintendent Shawn Scott said kids thrive in a play-based environment.

“When you really sit down and you look at how important early childhood education is to kids, it’s phenomenal,” Scott said. “I mean kids are just like a sponge at this age, and soon as we can get them in a structured setting whether it’s preschool or childcare in a learning environment kids just blossom.”

Scott and Lindblad said the impact of the Early Childhood Center is visible when kids go to elementary school.

“Those students that have attended our preschool tend to be doing fairly well compared to their classmates in reading skills,” Lindblad said. “So they know letter sounds they know that you put these letters together and those make words. They’re starting to do blending early.”

Lindblad said the preschool uses high scopes curriculum and they added zoo phonics, which applies action to the words they’re learning. She said it’s a way kids can have fun while learning, and parents are loving the service.

“I love all the art projects that they do and this little guy loves to play outside,” Charlie Leibel, a parent said. “So I love that they get to go outside very often. He comes home tired, and with a little boy with lots of energy that is great.”

Liebel had an in-home daycare before enrolling him in Adams Central Early Childhood Center. At first it caused anxiety, but having the opportunity to put her son in each program and work at the center made her feel that he is safe.