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A place to play and learn: Carter Childcare West offers new daycare option

By: Jeremy D. Wells

Carter County Times

 Parents who live or work near Olive Hill now have a new option for daycare in town – Carter Childcare West. The new facility, located between the West Carter Middle and High Schools in the old Wilson Martial Arts location, has been open for nearly a month now, but still has some slots available for those who need regular childcare. For those who just need occasional childcare, for a day or just a few hours, the center also has drop-in rates. Those who wish to take advantage of drop-in childcare should call in advance to see if space is available, however. 

“We offer care for children from birth through 12 years,” explained Sheila Porter, who serves as a co-director of the facility alongside Shelby Riley. 

During the school year, she explained, they only offer care to school-age children during after-school hours. But, with summer break upon us, the childcare center does hope to offer some programs for older children. 

“We hope to do a summer program,” Porter said, explaining that school-aged children from five to 12 would be on one side of the building while the pre-school children would be kept on the other side.

“We hope to do some summer activities and different things with them, so we’ll have a teacher over here with them doing different activities, bigger activities than for the little ones.”

Smaller children are also separated into different age groups, with infants kept separate from toddlers and older preschoolers for age appropriate play and activities. 

The facility is open “all day,” from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Parents are free to drop their children off or pick them up anytime between those hours, for as long as they need. There are different fees, however, for drop-in hours and for regularly scheduled days. 

“Full time is $135 a week, and part time is $85,” Porter said, explaining that full time care is anything more than 24 hours in a week, and part time is 24 hours in a week or less. 

Drop-in rates, for one day a week, are $45 a day. 

“If you need one day a week, and you aren’t sure what that day is going to be, we consider that a drop-in rate,” she said. “So, you would just call ahead, to make sure we have room for your child that day.” 

Special rates are also available if you have a single day each week that you know you will need care, on a regular basis, and they can plan on having your child there. These rates are moderately cheaper than their drop-in rates. 

They also offer variable rates, based on income, to those who qualify for the Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP). 

The location has a full kitchen, and serves USDA approved breakfasts and lunches, as well as full laundry facilities on site, which can be helpful for any messy emergencies. 

“There are lots of things that happen behind the scenes,” Porter laughed. “Once the last kid leaves there is lots of cleaning, disinfecting. The toys have to be disinfected. Tables. Mats. All of that stuff has to be disinfected on the daily.”

All of this work, though, goes toward creating a healthy, happy, and educational environment for the children who attend, Porter said, something that is important to herself and Riley, whose children also attend the center when their mother is working. 

For more information on Carter Childcare West, including availability and pricing for your situation, call (606)315-0111. 

Contact the writer at editor@cartercountytimes.com

Toddlers stretch out for nap time at Carter Childcare West. (Photo by Jeremy D. Wells, Carter County Times)


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