ECISD and YMCA cut the ribbon at the Pagewood Learning Center

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Aug 5 – Ahead of Thursday’s groundbreaking ceremony at the Pagewood Learning Center, Heather Ortiz said she was scrambling to find a pre-K 3 program for her son.

Ortiz said she originally planned to take her son, Levi, to Burnett Elementary, but found the school no longer offered a pre-K program.

After calling other pre-K programs in Odessa, Ortiz was directed to the Pagewood Learning Center, which was due to start classes this year.

“I was a little worried that we weren’t going to figure it out, but thank goodness it went well,” said Ortiz, a mother of five. “He’s really excited. He talks about his class, his teacher and his friends.

“Knowing that he will have the opportunity to start his studies early and to have the foundations and the stepping stones to move on to elementary school means a lot.”

Levi Ortiz helped members of the Ector County Independent School District and the YMCA cut the ribbon Thursday morning to officially open the Pagewood Learning Center.

Heather Ortiz said it was special for ECIDD and the YMCA to welcome her son with open arms.

“For them to reach out to us and invite us here, it certainly meant a lot to him,” she said with a smile. “When he found out he was going to help cut the ribbon, he stood up and was ready.”

The Pagewood Learning Center becomes the third pre-K program that works in conjunction with ECISD. The other two are the Lamar Early Education Center and the Carver Early Education Center.

However, the Pagewood Learning Center is unique from other preschool education centers as it will provide both before and after school child care.

Crissy Medina, CEO of Odessa Family YMCA, said children who need after-school child care will be transported to another YMCA site while licensed child care at the Pagewood facility is finalized. Medina hopes to obtain the license by September 1.

“I think this will be a really beneficial service for parents who are worried about their child and are going to watch their child after half a day of pre-K,” Medina said.

ECIDD Superintendent Scott Muri said the need for extended pre-kindergarten arose when figures showed two years ago that 1,300 children were not ready for kindergarten. The Pre-K 3 program will be a half day which will be a Frog Street 3 program, which is specially designed for children from pre-K to 3 years old.

Muri said the pre-K 4 program spans a full day of learning to prepare children for kindergarten.

“A lot of those preschool skills that kids need are letter recognition skills, color recognition skills, learning to work in groups; a lot of socialization happens especially at age 3,” he said. he declared. “…. A lot of socialization activities will take place as part of the pre-K program.”

Medina said the partnership between the YMCA and ECISD was a great fit.

The Pagewood Learning Center will have 14 classrooms with a facility that spans 21,000 square feet on land that spans 7.3 acres. Medina said this facility will be the cornerstone of learning for many children.

“We were already doing similar programs within our organization,” she said. “The transition was almost meant to be.”

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