Archive for Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Church to offer after-school care

June 22, 2005

A planned child care program will be located across the street from Tonganoxie Elementary School.

The United Methodist Church, 328 E. Fourth St., will house and sponsor Fun Quest, an after-school child care, as well as a Wednesday morning parents' day out.

Donna Higbee, director of children's ministries, said the after-school day care will be from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Children will participate in structured activities and they'll be able to use the computer lab that's also used with the Sunday school program.

Higbee, whose own children have outgrown the need for a daycare, said the after-school program will fill a need in the community. It will help, she said, that the church is located so close to the grade school.

"This is something we have been thinking about for quite a while," Higbee said. "... It's just a good way to reach out to the community and be able to affect the lives of the children."

The curriculum of the after-school care, and of the Wednesday morning program, will be faith-based, Higbee said, explaining the activities will include Biblical lessons, songs and stories.

The church will be licensed to accommodate 30 students in the after school program, Higbee said. The cost will be $37.50 a week for students who are in first grade through sixth grade, and $25 a week for kindergarten students.

"I think it's going to be a lot of fun," Higbee said, noting several teachers who attend the church have helped plan the lessons and activities.

The after-school care is better than having children go home to an empty house when their parents work, Higbee said.

"It's a safe place for them to come, and they're not going to be sitting here watching TV," Higbee said. "They're going to be doing a whole bunch of activities. We think it will really be an asset to the community."

The parents' day out program will be held from 8:15 a.m. until 11:15 a.m. Wednesdays, starting in September.

"It's just kind of an outlet for parents," Higbee said. "If they need to get some errands run, go to a doctor's appointment or get a haircut, they've got a safe place to care for their child."

This will be available for children age 18 months through pre-kindergarten, Higbee said. The cost will be $15 for a morning. Up to 12 children may attend. Like the after school program, where will be faith-based activities, stories, songs and play time, Higbee said.

Parents who are interested may contact the church by calling (913) 845-2480 between 8 a.m. and 3 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Higbee is looking forward to starting the program.

"We're all very optimistic," Higbee said. "We're ready for enrollment with both programs."

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