Letter to the Editor

We (Jessica Warning, Sadie Fordyce, Amanda Speier, Amanda Hardcorn, Nina Miracle, Ebony Jackson) are social work students doing an awareness project for our SWK405-002 Community Organization class. We are raising awareness of how the Early Childhood Center (ECC) on Northern Kentucky University’s Campus only accepts children two years of age to school readiness.

This can pose a problem for students, staff who have infants. The ECC offers discounted rates to students’ and staff. After speaking with Assistant Vice President for Student Affairs Lisa Rhine, it was determined that the ECC is unable to accept children younger than two years of age due to the inadequate space available to them. Funding is a problem and the main reason they are not able to expand. The ECC plans on traveling to Frankfort to raise awareness of this issue and to declare funding from Obama’s stimulus package.

We conducted 350 surveys of students, staff, and parents who currently are using the ECC. Our findings were that 267 of them agreed that this in an important issue, 288 said this would benefit the campus. One question that was asked was if they would be willing to pay a five dollar tuition increase; 273 responded yes! Majority of the surveyors commented, ‘A five dollar tuition increase is nothing!’ We came up with this idea because the students of NKU had a tuition increase to support the study abroad.

Also, after researching childcare centers at tri-state high schools (Campbell County, Dayton, Simon Kenton, and Holmes) we found that they all accept infants starting at six weeks of age. There also were some tri-state colleges we looked into (University of Louisville, University of Kentucky, Morehead State University, University of Cincinnati, and Indiana State University) and the findings were that four out of the five of them accept infants at six weeks of age and the other one accepts them at three months of age. This obviously leaves the ECC at NKU as the only tri-state center that does not accept children less than two years of age.

Now we ask you to ask yourself what we can do as a community to come together as one to support the ECC on expanding their center so they can take children less than two years of age, so no one has to lose out on an education due to having no care for their infant.