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Old 07-16-2018, 10:34 PM
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Default Opening a Center - Church

Hello! Iíve run a registered Home Daycare for 14 years (plus 3 years when my oldest was little) and am currently finishing my BS in ECE. Recently I was referred by our local CCRR to a pastor whoíd like to open a Daycare in his church or rent the rooms so someone else can open a daycare.

Previously the rooms for used for headstart and later voluntary pre-k but they now have locations in the school buildings and no longer need the church.

I meet the requirements to be a center director in my state and plan to look at the space this week. Iíve been in the rooms when they were used for voluntary pre-k but need measurements etc. to determine their capacity and if I could make them work for a center. I also plan to ask the pastor about the zoning since itís next to a school but in a residential area. I will look at to make sure the rooms meet regulations but besides size, zoning and regulations I donít know what else to ask/consider.

The church is next to a school and I think it would be great as 1/2 day care for the voluntary pre-K students. Our pre-k program is from about 9-1 so itís hard for working parents to utilize if they canít find a provider or center to transport (most donít). We also have a ton of need for infant care but because of ratios I donít think infant care would be very profitable after paying staff. In addition itís close to my house and I think my clients would follow me there (all children between 2-4yo).

Opening a center has been a long time dream of mine but I wasnít expecting this so Iím scrambling for information.

Iím trying to think of all of the pros/cons/considerations of working for the church as the director of their center vs. renting the space and opening my own center and was hoping you gals could help.
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Old 07-17-2018, 06:37 AM
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I am currently operating a licensed childcare center in a church, that I started from the ground up and would be happy to help you in any way I can. Our childcare center took us 3 years to open because of having to update a new sprinkler system and having to have new architectural plans done because the building was renovated. We had to do this for the state of TN.Cost:$65,000 The rooms were bare and I had to buy furniture as well as toys, etc, which is not included in the $65,000. All in all we spent around $160,000 before we even opened. It is a money pit, and the state makes things extremely difficult. My suggestion to you would be, make sure that is something you want to do because you must have a passion to do it. I cannot begin to tell you how hard of a job this is, I have developed an anxiety disorder as well as a stress ulcer from this job. We are a 3 star center and we have been open for a 1 year and 1/2. No one can prepare you for the stress that comes with the state as well as staff turnover. The staff turnover is a revolving door, and I pay $11-$12 an hr, which no other childcare center in this region does. I also give benefits. I don't want to discourage you, I just want to be honest. If I knew now what it took to do this, I would have pursued other options. I would be happy to offer you any advice or answer any questions you have.
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Old 07-17-2018, 08:11 AM
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I would suggest talking to your licensor or someone in their office if they have different people cover family daycares than centers, and having someone with the state walk through with you and tell you what you would need to do to get the church licensed. They should be more than happy to help!
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