PCC unveils brand new childcare centers to serve students at Rock Creek and Sylvania

Story by Katherine Miller & Alfredo Moreno. | Start the discussion

Simone Chaves cuts ribbon at Sylvania.

Pint-sized potties, sensory tables, a climbing wall, calming colors from nature and much more were unveiled this week at Portland Community College’s brand new Sylvania Campus Child Development Center (CDC).

Faculty, staff and key individuals who helped make the state-of-the-art facility a reality toured the 14,000 square feet of space that will serve children aged 6 weeks to 5 years as well as students in Sylvania’s Early Education and Family Studies Program.

Sylvania Campus President Lisa Avery was among the college leadership at the ribbon-cutting, and she marveled at what the 2008 bond measure allowed the PCC to build.Outdoor play area.

“I want to thank our voters,” said Avery. “This is exactly where we see the future of childhood development. The new space is incredibly lovely. It’s light, it’s new, and just a huge, huge improvement over our current center. It will improve services for student parents and staff, and make us the signature space for our lab school, for training and continuing education, and for all of Southwest Portland.”

CDC Director Simone Chaves stressed that one of the major benefits of the spacious new center is that it will serve twice the number of infants and toddlers as it used to, helping fill “a high, high need in the community.” Counting preschoolers as well as infants and toddlers, the CDC has increased the number of slots available from 40 to 64.

Dan Saltzman, retired Portland City Commissioner and current PCC Board member, also praised the new CDC.

“I think it shows our college’s commitment to the community, especially those who have children,” he said. “This is a real investment in whole, complete families.”

Slots at Sylvania’s CDC are still available for the new term. Call (971) 722-4424 for further details.

Group poses with scissors

Childcare Collaboration Comes to Fruition at Rock Creek

Blustery conditions outside didn’t damper the enthusiasm as staff and faculty from the college’s Rock Creek Campus joined Fruit & Flower in celebrating the opening of the new child care center. The facility will welcome its first young students for the first time on Monday, Sept. 23, allowing PCC to offer childcare facilities at all four of its comprehensive campuses for the first time. 

The opening is the culmination of a $7 million project that was funded by both the 2008 (design) and 2017 (construction) bonds. The 7,800-square-foot facility can accommodate 67 full time slots for infants, toddlers, and pre-schoolers. 

“The opening of this facility is so important for our student success efforts at PCC,” said Rock Creek Campus President Chris Villa. “It allows our students with children to focus on school while knowing that their kids are receiving outstanding care in a safe, modern, and nurturing environment right here on the Rock Creek Campus.”Play area at RC.

With input from the Parenting Club at the Rock Creek Women’s Resource Center, longtime Portland child care provider Fruit & Flower was selected to manage the programming and staff at the new facility. The non-profit Fruit & Flower has served working and student families in the Portland metro area since 1906, providing a play-based childcare program that supports creative thinking, respect for diversity, and social awareness in each child. The organization’s flagship location is in Northwest Portland. 

The center is currently enrolling children of PCC students, staff and faculty, as well as members of the surrounding community. Enrollment options include full or half days from 2-5 days per week. The center is open from 6:45 a.m. to 6:15 p.m., Monday through Friday. 

PCC students and staff can benefit from reduced or waived fees and scholarships are available for those who qualify. To find out more about the services at the new childcare center visit Fruit and Flower website, or contact (503) 228-8349 or email receptionist@fruitandflower.org.

“Fruit & Flower has long standing traditions of providing financial assistance to families in need as part of our mission to help working parents raise generations of joyful learners and we’re thrilled to have this center at the Rock Creek Campus be a part of that now,” said Fruit & Flower Board President Amanda Harvey. “Together we’ll provide the love, care, and nurturing our children deserve.”

Outdoor play area.Play room.Play area at RC.Simone Chaves cuts ribbon at Sylvania.Group poses with scissorsChildcare grand openings.

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