New on-campus child care partnership with Aldine-Greenspoint YMCA

Beginning fall 2008, the Aldine-Greenspoint YMCA will be partnering with Lone Star College-North Harris to provide on-campus child care services. The Aldine-Greenspoint YMCA is part of the YMCA of the Greater Houston Area, which has a 100-year history of helping build strong kids, strong families and strong communities.

"We are thrilled to be able to continue our mission of community outreach through this partnership with Lone Star College-North Harris," says Ralph Wheeler, Aldine-Greenspoint YMCA executive director. "The philosophy of our early child care program is simple. We view youth as assets to our community. All young people, regardless of ethnicity, gender, economic, geographic or religious background, face choices that can positively or negatively influence their futures. Under the guidance of caring adults, children can learn fair play and positive communication-all skills that are needed to succeed."

The new YMCA at Lone Star College-North Harris child care program will offer accessible, affordable and high-quality child care serving the college's students, employees and the community. For the past eight years, LSC-North Harris has been the home of a Child Development Lab School (CDLS), which featured outstanding Montessori programs, but child care needs have changed significantly over the past few years and the CDLS is simply not an affordable alternative for most students and employees.

"After careful study and reviewing this situation for almost a year, it was determined that we needed to restructure this important resource. An estimated 30 to 40 percent of our students face the challenge of balancing work, college and young children on a very limited budget," says Dr. Steve Head, LSC-North Harris president. "Providing these students with easy access to high-quality, reasonably-priced child care removes a major barrier for them as they try to complete their educational goals."

The YMCA at Lone Star College-North Harris will offer three child care options, including pre-school care for children ages 3 to 4 years, after-school care for elementary-age children, and a special drop-in care program called "Child Watch," for children 18 months through 5 years of age. Child Watch is reserved for current and future enrolled LSC-North Harris students and offered in four-hour blocks of care. It is specifically designed for those students who may need child care during the times they attend classes or when a student's regular day care falls through.

"The facilities are outstanding," says Dr. Head. "The building and grounds were specifically designed as a state-of-the-art child care center and learning lab with observation hallways, age-appropriate activity rooms, and outside play areas.  

YMCA at Lone Star College-North Harris will open Monday, Aug. 25. Operational hours will be 6:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Costs for the all-day pre-school (ages three and four) program is $110 per week, after-school care (ages 5 to 12) is $50 per week. For more information about enrolling your child call 281.765.7730.

Lone Star College-North Harris is located at 2700 W.W. Thorne Drive, one-half mile south of FM 1960 E, between Aldine-Westfield and Hardy Roads. For more information about the college, call 281.618.5400 or visit: NorthHarris.LoneStar.edu.

Lone Star College System consists of five colleges, including CyFair, Kingwood, Montgomery, North Harris, and Tomball, six centers and Lone Star College-University Center. It is the largest college system in the Houston area, and third largest community college district in Texas. To learn more, visit LoneStar.edu.

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