Submitted by Missouri S&T
In Phelps County, only 11% of the demand for child care is met with existing licensed facilities, according to the 2018 Missouri Budget Project report. That lack of quality care means parents have to cut down on work hours, travel farther for licensed care or use unregulated in-home facilities.
Missouri S&T is stepping up to help meet the need by establishing a child care center in Rolla. The university won a$2.7 million-dollar grant from the state as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act Child Care Plan.
The Little Miners Child Care Center (LMC3) will be located at 1207 N. Elm St. in S&T’s Southwestern Bell Cultural Center. The university will use the majority of the grant funding to remodel the existing building. The center is expected to open by fall 2021 after renovations to the building are complete and a director and staff are hired and trained.
The facility will enroll up to 76 children ages 6 weeks to 5 years. Qualifying members of the community include undergraduate students, graduate students, campus staff, faculty and Rolla area workers.
“Access to quality child care is critical for working families, and attending college is often a full-time job,” said Missouri Gov. Mike Parson in an announcement Friday, Oct. 2. “With this funding, we have an opportunity to not only expand access to child care for student parents, but also strengthen our early childhood offerings, both of which are crucial to developing a strong workforce and moving our state forward.”
Missouri S&T interim Provost Stephen Roberts says the facility will transform Rolla and Phelps County into a more desirable home for university students and employees.
“The Little Miners Child Care Center will help satisfy one of our community’s greatest needs by providing affordable, high-quality child care,” says Roberts. “The establishment of a child care center has been a long-time priority for our staff, faculty and students who are parents of small children, and the center will become fully integrated into our diverse and vibrant campus life. It will certainly benefit from the stability of location at a public land-grant university with a 150-year history of growth and continuous operation.”
See the full story online at news.mst.edu/2020/10/missouri-st-wins-2-7-million-cares-act-grant-to-establish-child-care-center.
About Missouri University of Science and Technology
Missouri University of Science and Technology (Missouri S&T) is a STEM-focused research university of over 7,600 students and part of the four-campus University of Missouri System. Missouri S&T offers 99 different degree programs in 40 areas of study, including engineering, education, the sciences, business and information technology, the humanities, and the liberal arts. For more information, visit www.mst.edu.