Children’s Learning Center Receives Keystone STARS Funding

Published 02.28.2013

School of Sciences, Humanities & Visual Communications News

Pennsylvania College of Technology’s Robert and Maureen Dunham Children’s Learning Center received a Keystone STARS Merit Award and a Keystone STARS Education and Retention Award totaling $43,870 for 2012-13.

The center uses the funds for staff development, the purchase of toys and furniture for the children, accreditation-related expenses, special health and nutrition activities, and family events.

Other grant-funded activities include attendance by staff members at professional-development conferences, including the Pennsylvania Early Childhood Summit and the annual conference of the National Association of Campus Children’s Centers.

Children will enjoy free sessions with Stretch-n-Grow, a local movement and health program, and children’s theater productions at the Community Arts Center. Also included are various get-togethers for children and families, including a fall Welcome Back Night, a holiday family tea, a Valentine’s Day “Book Bingo,” and a spring outing on the Hiawatha Paddlewheel Riverboat.

Keystone STARS is an initiative of the state Office of Child Development and Early Learning. The intent of the STARS Merit Award is to support continuous quality improvement in early learning and school-age programs by encouraging and supporting them in developing and sustaining higher levels of quality, strengthening outcomes for children and families, and improving school readiness.

To be eligible for the award, facilities must maintain at least a Star 2 designation through the Keystone STARS initiative. The Children’s Learning Center is a Star 4 facility, the highest recognition level.

The intent of the Keystone STARS Education and Retention Award is to establish a stable workforce of highly qualified staff, reducing turnover and increasing the level of educational attainment of early childhood professionals.

Keystone STARS grants are made from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services through the Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare and STEP Inc.

The Children’s Learning Center at Penn College serves students, faculty and staff whose children need high-quality, on-campus care and early childhood education while their parents work or attend classes. The center cares for children ages 14 months to 5 years.

The center is accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children and the Middle States Commission on Elementary Education.

For more about Penn College, email Admissions Office or call toll-free 800-367-9222.

For more information about grant-funding opportunities, faculty and staff may contact the Grants and Contracts Office at ext. 7562 or through its Web portal.