EAST HARTFORD – At Goodwin College, students lead busy lives. Work and family on top of the commitment to come back to school can be difficult. That’s why the College launched its Kid Care program, to provide a fun, safe learning environment for children while their parents are attending classes.
Beginning with free care for SNAP and Pell Grant students, demand quickly pushed Goodwin to broaden its model and offer full-time and drop-in child care to its students. The program, which provides comprehensive child care solutions, focuses on a Reggio Emilia-inspired classroom environment.
“We really do have a curriculum. We plan activities every day,” said Kid Care Program Director Jill Brown. “It’s a blend of school and after care.”
The Kid Care program “curriculum” include arts & crafts, active outdoor play, and nature-based activities for the children. And quiet rest centers provide places to rest, or take a moment for themselves.
By taking the needs of adult students into account, Goodwin created the program to provide both all-day, Monday-through-Friday care to its students. And the program also allows for a drop-in care model that allows students to attend class or study in the library without having to pay the cost of full day child care.
“It’s the first time a lot of these kids are with other kids whose parents are making this sacrifice” to go back to school, Brown said of the current Kid Care students. “And we know we’ve been successful because after just a day or two, even kids who were worried about leaving their parents will cry when they know it’s time to leave Kid Care for the day.”