I would like to share the facts regarding the recent front page article on Wednesday, Oct. 14 titled "IVCC considers eliminating day care center." The front page title and article is devastating to our center.

This has caused great concern among our currently enrolled families and staff as well as any families who may have considered future enrollment at the center.

I am unsure as to how this can be undone. Hopefully the facts will shed a more positive outlook on IVCC's Early Childhood Education Center/Lab School.

1. There is no intention to eliminate the IVCC Early Childhood Education Center/Lab School. Although I did not attend the board's facilities committee meeting held Tuesday, Oct. 13, I took immediate action to speak with individuals who had attended the meeting. The discussion centered on the relocation of the early childhood education center/lab school vs. the elimination of the center.

2. The Early Childhood Education Center/Lab School has current enrollment of 20 children (DCFS licensing capacity of 15 children) vs. the 5 children stated by Mr. Kevin Caufield. We are at full capacity Monday- Thursday with 2 full-time slots available on Fridays. I credit the enrollment to our wonderful staff (Virginia Pokryfke and Christine Torri) as they have gone above and beyond to provide a high-quality educational program/center for families and children. The Center also serves as an educational facility for IVCC student observations, field experiences and student teaching. The courses/programs that have utilized the Center as a lab component include early childhood education, education, psychology, and nursing.

3. The whole day care issue keeps getting worse. "What's our payback?" was a comment cited from one of the board members. According to a long-term study by the High Scope Perry Preschool Project, adults (at the age or 40) who received high-quality early childhood education care and education show economic and social gain and less crime.

The study documented a return to society of more than $16 for every tax dollar invested in the early care and education program. For greater follow-up on this research study, please visit http://www.highscope.org. The IVCC Early Childhood Education program has recently received federal funding to support the child care needs of student parents through a financial subsidy grant (CCAMPIS) that may provide free educational care for their child(ren) while attending IVCC.

Diane Christianson IVCC ECE Program Coordinator Princeton, Illinois

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