Viking Day Care Serves Community

Ashley Elston, Staff Writer

An affordable, safe, and educational child care center is available at Hudson Valley. Students who are also parents can bring their children to the center while they go to class. The building is on-campus, which makes access convenient and even allows parents to visit their children between classes.

The Viking Child Care Center is an education-based, nationally accredited child care facility with college educated instructors.The facility enrolls 120 children, aged anywhere from six weeks to five years of age, on a semesterly basis. Three out of every four enrolled children are those of college students, while the rest are from the surrounding community. The cost of child care depends on the parents’ income. There are also grants available, making the tuition flexible for those in need.

The child care facility has 10 classrooms; two infant, four toddler and four preschool. Their Universal Pre-K follows their own curriculum as well as that of the Troy city school district. Rather than just providing basic child care, the Viking Child Care educates children in skills that will help them succeed later on.

“We don’t hire anyone unless they have at least an associate’s degree. Because we’re nationally accredited, we’re looking for at least a bachelor’s degree. We are not a glorified daycare, ” said assistant director Noreen Ferra. “What we’re doing [with our program] from infants to toddler to preschool, is trying to make sure that they have the best foundation for their future.”

The Viking Child Care center is a $3 million dollar facility built in 2000 and is overseen by the Faculty Student Association. Some of its features include a parent room for waiting or studying, two secure playgrounds, a gross-motor room for when children are not able go outside, and security-code locked doors.

The building is very secure, with fenced outside areas and secured doors which only parents and staff get codes to. Anyone else must be buzzed in. “We want to make sure everyone is safe,” said Noreen.

The children get to play outside up to twice a day. When it’s raining, they go in the gross-motor room so they can get the physical activity they need. Learning and skills building is incorporated throughout the day.

They children learn sharing, kindness, and people skills with focused learning through themes and play. Sometimes computers are used for education or so that the teacher can give visuals for a learning theme. Besides learning and play time, the children get naptime and are provided with a nutritionist-balanced breakfast, lunch, and afternoon snack.

When space is available, interested parties are able to receive a tour of the building. There is also a waiting list to accommodate interest when the center is full.

The Viking Child Care Center is located on Williams Road and can be found on the campus maps. They are currently enrolling, and contact information can be found at the Faculty Student Association office on the second floor of the Siek Campus Center or on the Hudson Valley website.

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