Glendale day care center desperately needs new site

first_imgGLENDALE – One of the city’s largest day care centers is in danger of closing because its lease is up and its operators can’t find a new site. Children’s Community Center, which serves 75 kids a day, has until May 31, 2008, to find a new home, but parents and administrators say their options are limited because Glendale is already densely packed. “It’s hard to find that much land that we could actually afford in Glendale,” said Paul Ramey, curriculum coordinator for the center, which is run by Glendale Adventist Medical Center. “It’s getting more and more difficult to do that, and a lot of property is being bought up by developers and we can’t compete on that level, financially.” At 1015 N. Central Ave. in a building owned by a Catholic church, the center is one of three in Glendale accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children, an advocacy group based in Washington, D.C. Having that designation is a boon, setting the facility apart from many others in town. But it also complicates efforts to find a new site, administrators said. To keep its accreditation, the center must have at least 35 square feet per child in each classroom, and even more space for babies, who need 50 square feet each to make room for cribs. The site also must be at street level so kids can quickly evacuate in an emergency. And it needs 3,225 square feet of outdoor space for a play area. While the lease isn’t up for eight months, getting the state to license a site for child care can take up to six months, Ramey said. Most of the parents whose children use the center work at Nestle USA, Dreamworks and other Glendale businesses. They have formed a task force to look for a new site. “The unknown is frustrating in any instance, but particularly when you’re dealing with your children,” said parent Julie Johnson, 36. “So that has been really stressing the urgency for all of us.” The center leases a building owned by Incarnation Catholic Church. The church has already extended the lease, but it needs the space for its own needs. Earlier this week, children in one room at the center napped on cots, wrapped in blankets, as classical music played softly. In another room, a 4-year-old fashioned “cookies” out of Playdough, while her classmates colored and spun tops on the floor. In the infant room, caregivers in yellow coveralls played with babies rolling around on the carpet. Parent Denis Dillon, 37, works at Nestle, as does his wife. Having spent his early years at home with his mother, he said he was reluctant to put his children in day care. The center – which charges $875 a month for a preschooler – is not cheap, he said. But after seeing his son socialize, paint, sing and dance, he wants to keep him there. “You figure out,” he said, “it’s a matter of days before he becomes smarter than me.” [email protected] (818) 546-3304160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img

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