Child Development Center
Caring for Children
Construction has begun on a full-day child development center (CDC) to increase access to high quality early care and education for families at various income levels. We will provide financial aid for 25% of students with scholarships equal to 25% of tuition on average.
It has been well documented that children’s earliest years have a profound impact on their school success, their career success, and their lives. Education serves as an equalizer with the potential to make up for the deficits many children face due to socio-economic circumstances.
Unfortunately, in our community, access to high quality early childhood care is limited by cost and available spaces.
Our new, high-quality CDC will contribute to economic mobility in our community by serving families at different income levels.
Meet our director
Chris Callaway will join the Covenant staff May 1 as director of our new Child Development Center.
A lifelong educator, Chris began working at a child care center while in high school in his hometown of Ojai, Ca. He earned a degree in child development from Cal State - Northridge. He's been director of an Easter Seals Child Development Center, a Seasonal and Migrant Head Start program, and, most recently, the Isla Vista Children's Center.
In his own words, "I have dedicated my career to enriching the lives of the children and families involved in my programs. My philosophy is to provide high quality educational opportunities in a fun, safe, and caring environment that is tailored to each child's unique abilities and culture."
Chris and his wife, Karla, have two daughters and are expecting in September. Please join us in welcoming Chris to Covenant and supporting him in this important endeavor for our community.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: When will the Covenant Child Development Center (CDC) open?
Construction on the new building has been delayed due to rain. The revised projection to receive a Certificate of Occupancy (CO) is mid-October. Upon receipt of the CO, the CDC space must be inspected and licensed by the N.C. Department of Human Resources. Currently, we hope to open in early November 2019.
Q: When will the CDC begin taking names for a waiting list?
The Child Development Center anticipates being able to accept interest forms starting June 17, 2019. All requests for child care will be accepted through an interest form available on this page. Forms will only be accepted online. Each interest form will be worked in the order of receipt. The interest form will provide the CDC with basic information about your child and will note whether your family is requesting financial assistance. The CDC Director will follow up with you about enrollment or the wait list process.
Q: Will there be any preference given to Covenant members?
Children of Covenant Presbyterian Church members have a priority status so long as the CDC operates within its commitment to diversity. Should the CDC population begin to approach 50% or higher of Covenant members, the Advisory Council is directed to review and, if appropriate, recommend revisions to the Enrollment Priorities and the marketing strategy to ensure that the vision of a fully diverse CDC can be met.
Q: Where can I go to view the Enrollment Policy, the CDC Governance Policy, and the Financial Assistance Policy?
The three policies have recently been approved by the Covenant Session and are available on this site under the Policies <hyperlink> tab. A Financial Assistance Policy FAQ provides answers to questions about the Financial Assistance Policy.
Q: What programming will the CDC offer?
Covenant Presbyterian Church Child Development Center will adhere to enhanced North Carolina teacher-to-child ratio requirements and use an approved classroom curriculum.
Our fully qualified, staff have experience in early childhood care and education and are passionate about nurturing students.
We offer enrichment programs that broaden and deepen classroom curriculum and help bring concepts and lessons to life.
All children enjoy daily playtime in our new, dynamic outdoor learning environment.
Nutritious breakfast, lunch and snacks are provided on-site daily.
Q: Where will the CDC be located?
The Covenant CDC will be located on the lower floor of our new hospitality center at our 1000 E. Morehead Street campus. Our CDC will operate within a defined, secure area of the Covenant church campus. Entrances are accessible only by staff, family and guardians of students in the CDC program. The CDC will share newly renovated playground space with the Covenant Preschool.
Q: Will transportation to the CDC be offered?
Currently, we do not anticipate offering transportation.
Q: Part of the CDC mission is to serve children from a variety of backgrounds. What is the CDC’s commitment to diversity?
Central to preparing our young students for this world and ensuring the highest quality of education is creating a diverse classroom community within the CDC. Research shows that a diverse environment leads to better learning outcomes for all students. Therefore, the CDC will seek to serve a population of children that is diverse across socioeconomic status, race, and ethnicity.
Q: How will the CDC achieve diversity?
Our CDC Advisory Council will include partners representative of the broader Charlotte community. Through these representatives, we will identify opportunities to market our CDC program to families outside of the Covenant church community and the immediate surrounding area.
Q: Will the CDC offer financial assistance for tuition?
Yes, a number of studies show that benefits of socio-economically diverse classrooms include, but are not limited to, enhancing ”soft skills” like compassion, kindness, and seeing things from another’s perspective.
Accordingly, Covenant will offer financial assistance through a program that will serve at least 25% of the CDC’s children (or about 21 children). Assistance will equal approximately 25% of the monthly tuition. The Covenant CDC will actively seek community partnerships to help us find students and families who will qualify for the assistance.
Once the Covenant CDC is licensed as a NC 4- or 5-star CDC, it will work with Child Care Resources to enroll children who have qualified for subsidized child care. Subsidy payments typically cover approximately 75% of the market cost of high-quality full day care. The Covenant CDC may provide additional financial assistance to families as needed to make the child care affordable.
Q: Why did the CDC decide that the average financial assistance amount will be 25% of the tuition?
Financial assistance of 25% of tuition can have a meaningful impact for a family seeking a quality educational and child care experience with limited income.
We estimate that a 25% financial assistance will support a child’s tuition by $285 per month or over $3,000 for the year.
Q: How will Covenant fund the CDC Financial Assistance Program?
A CDC Scholarship Endowment has been established. This endowment will provide the bedrock of funding for the financial assistance program, ensuring that there is CDC financial assistance funding available from the start and in perpetuity. Covenant’s goal is for the CDC to have adequate financial assistance funds to effectively reserve 25% of the seats for families requesting financial assistance when the CDC opens and each year thereafter.
This endowment will be seeded with a $2 million capital injection from the capital campaign. Establishing this endowment sets a clear precedent and discipline now and for future generations as to the importance of offering meaningful financial assistance to a significant number of children who would not otherwise be able to attend our CDC.
Q: How will the CDC determine which families qualify for financial assistance?
The CDC Advisory Council will be responsible for ensuring that the CDC adheres to its mission to provide a diverse learning environment and will establish guidelines for awarding financial aid. A financial assistance committee of the Advisory Council will consider the financial situation of families who apply for aid and make the final award decision based on these guidelines. A Financial Assistance policy and FAQ will be available under the Policies tab of this site.
Q: How will the CDC affect parking and traffic on campus?
We do not anticipate a significant impact on traffic or parking. CDC drop-off and pick-up times do not coincide with preschool hours and will be staggered according to each family’s work schedule.
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