Planned child care center to open by fall 2016

December 1, 2014  

A child care facility with capacity for 116 children will open on the west side of Purdue's West Lafayette campus by fall 2016, President Mitch Daniels announced Monday (Nov. 17).

Daniels, who announced the details during a University Senate meeting, said the facility will be a public-private partnership involving Purdue, the Purdue Research Foundation and a center operator, which will be determined later.

The facility will represent a 63 percent increase in the campus' full-time child care capacity slots, bringing Purdue to the midpoint of child care capacity available at other Big Ten and peer institutions. The additional capacity is expected to improve the University's reputation as a family-friendly work environment, Daniels said.

In addition to the full-time child care slots it will offer, the facility will include a school-age classroom that will provide a variety of camps and drop-in days for children ages 6-12 when their school is not in session. The classroom will have the capacity to accommodate 24 children at a time.

The facility will be located on the north side of State Street about half a block west of McCormick Road. CSO Architects, an Indianapolis contractor, will design the facility, which will incorporate best practices as determined through the ongoing operation of the Patty Jischke Early Care and Education Center. Children’s Choice Learning Centers/Bright Horizons, a contracted vendor, operates that center.

Purdue's other child care centers are the Ben & Maxine Miller Child Development Laboratory School, operated by the College of Health and Human Sciences; and Purdue Village Preschool, operated by Housing and Food Services. Purdue currently has capacity to accommodate 182 children on a full-time basis and 60 on a part-time basis.

The additional child care capacity that the new facility will provide is a direct response to the recommendations of the University's Child Care Task Force. The task force was made up of nine faculty and staff members from across campus.

The planned child care facility will be the second step that has been taken in response to the task force's recommendations. In October, the University hired a worksite health and child care specialist, who will work to implement task force recommendations related to child care at the University. Hiring a coordinator was another of the task force's recommendations.

Writer: Amanda Hamon Kunz, 49-61325, 

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