The MSD of Lawrence Township, a long time innovative leader in early childhood education, houses kindergarten and pre-school programs in four NAEYC accredited Early Learning Centers located on the campuses of Amy Beverland, Brook Park, Mary Castle and Winding Ridge Elementary Schools.
Address: Lawrence Township
Q&A with Lawrence Township Early Learning Centers:
What makes Lawrence Township Early Learning Centers unique?
The beauty of The Early Learning Centers lies in the fact that we are a community of early childhood educators with a sole focus on the unique needs and development of children ages 2-6 years old. From the design of our buildings to the intentionally selected staff, our four NAEYC accredited Early Learning Centers are committed to providing educational and social/emotional experiences that honor and preserve childhood.
What is Lawrence Township Early Learning Centers’ educational philosophy?
Our educational philosophy is influenced by the schools of Reggio Emilia, Italy, the work of educational researchers Montessori, and Vygotsky, as well as traditional preschool components. First and foremost, we believe that young children are capable, competent, and have the right to a developmentally appropriate school experience. We understand that academic and social/emotional development are equally important and know that children learn best through active, hands-on experiences and play. We recognize the importance of a strong connection between school and family in supporting the student growth, valuing family’s unique cultural identities which we strive to incorporate into our curriculum and school experiences.
What is Lawrence Township Early Learning Centers’ age/grade range?
Our four Early Learning Center sites serve students ages 3-6. There is one toddler program at ELC Mary Castle that serves 2-year-olds. Families interested in dual language programming for Preschool or Kindergarten can apply to attend preschool and/or kindergarten at either Forest Glen or Skiles Test Elementary.
What is your enrollment policy? Are there any key dates parents should be aware of?
Admission is rolling, so those interested in attending one of the Early Learning Centers during the current academic year should visit the enrollment page of the district website. Enrollment for the 2021-2022 school year at the four Early Learning Centers begins in January. Families interested in dual language preschool/Kindergarten programming at Forest Glen or Skiles Test complete an early application process in the month of November.
What is the cost to attend one of the Early Learning Centers?
Preschool tuition is five days per week and is $140/week. Before Care for a week is $25/week and After Care is $50/week. Kindergarten is state-funded, so has no tuition fee.
All ELC sites accept CCDF. The purpose of CCDF is to assist low income families by increasing the availability of high quality, affordable early childhood programming.
What are the standard school day hours? Does Lawrence Township Early Learning Centers offer flexible day/hour options? Is before/after school care available?
Preschool operates between 8 AM – 3 PM. Kindergarten is 8 AM – 2:30 PM.
Before and After Care are available between at 6:30 AM until 6:00 PM.
How many children are in each class? How are children divided up?
The maximum number of children in any classroom is 20 and each class has both a lead teacher and assistant. Individual student needs are evaluated prior to placement in a particular classroom.
What is the teacher/child ratio?
Student to staff ratios are established by our accrediting/licensing entities. The maximum number of children in any classroom is 20 and each class has both a lead teacher and assistant.
What are the teacher’s credentials?
All sites are NAEYC accredited and Paths to Quality Level 4. Preschool instructors must have a CDA or an equivalent 2 year degree or higher. Kindergarten teachers must hold a valid Indiana Teaching license.
Is parental participation required?
Parents are encouraged to engage with their child’s school and are welcomed with open arms. We believe that families are an integral part of the education process. Decades of research have shown definitively that students of involved parents perform at a higher level, get better grades, have better attendance, demonstrate higher levels of self esteem, and have fewer discipline problems.
How do teachers communicate with parents? How often do parents receive updates?
Teachers and building leaders are in regular communication with parents. Tools utilized include SeeSaw and ParentSquare. Phone calls and email are also used. Teachers attempt to include photos of children in action in all communications.
Does Lawrence Township Early Learning Centers offer support for students with special needs?
Yes, each building has a full resource staff to support students who have special needs or who need additional accommodations. On-site speech, occupational, and physical therapy services are available to students who qualify.
How much time do the children spend outside?
At a minimum, students are outside for two 20 minute recess periods each day. Teachers are encouraged to take students outside when the weather is nice to do writing, reading, and exploration.
Are meals and/or snacks provided?
Breakfast and lunch are provided to students daily. Students have a morning and afternoon snack built into their schedule. The cost for breakfast is $1.25. The cost for lunch is $1.75. Free and Reduced price meal applications are available. Snack cost is built into the tuition fee.
Does my child need to be potty-trained?
We prefer that 3-year-olds be potty trained but if they are not, our staff will continue to help children master this skill while supporting them with their learning.
What enrichment programs/activities are offered?
All students participate in Studio (art) and Big Play Room (movement and literacy) activities.
What are Lawrence Township Early Learning Centers’ safety policies? What extra safety measures are being taking during the COVID-19 pandemic?
Safety of students and staff is the top priority. Any visitor is required to complete a quick Safe Visitor Solutions screening before proceeding into the building. With regard to COVID-19, the district has implemented enhanced cleaning protocols, mandated the wearing of masks, enforced social distancing, and restricted school visitors to help protect students and staff. A full virtual learning environment is available to all kindergarten students. A comprehensive web page dedicated to COVID-19 protocols is available on the district website.
Who should parents contact for more information about Lawrence Township Early Learning Centers?
Parents should go to www.elc.ltschools.org or contact the office of Early Childhood at 317-423-8363.
Are tours available for families wanting more information?
Due to COVID-19 restrictions, outside visitors are not permitted in the school building during the instructional day. However, tours are available by appointment before or after school.