LLCC provides first-rate daycare center for students and community


Teresa Brummett

Children build with blocks together in the LLCC Child Development Center.

Madison Mings, Staff Writer

SPRINGFIELD — Are you a parent that is stressing over finding a daycare, or know someone who is looking for one? Lincoln Land Community College has a daycare called Child Development Center, that will fit your child’s needs.

The Child Development Center was started in 1994. Before that, it was a farmhouse called the Montgomery house before it was changed into the LLCC Child Development Center.

Laurie Rhodes is the director of the Child Development Center and this will be her 20th year working for the center.

She graduated in the early childhood program and now teaches as part-time. I asked Rhodes what kind of child care center is the Child Development Center, “We are a nationally accredited lab school with students on a regular basis.” She said.

The Child Development Center accepts children ages 15 months to Kindergarten. And the cost of the daycare for each family is based on the age of the child. The center also offers student rates and community rates to those families.

The Child Development Center offers full-time or part-time care to families within the community, including those who are not students. The center is open Monday – Friday from 6:45 a.m. to 6 p.m. The rates for community members are:

  • Toddle rate: $50.00 per day or $201.00 per week
  • Two-year-old rate: $47.50 per day or $192.00 per week
  • Three years and older: $45.00 per day or $183.00 per week

For students, care is available for children at a half day rate from 7 a.m. to noon or noon to 5 p.m. or at a full day rate 7 am to 5 pm

  • Toddle rate: (15 months to age 24 months) $20.10 per half day/$40.20 per full day
  • Two-year-old rate: $18.37 per half day/ $36.73 full day
  • Three years and older: $13.78 per half day/$27.55 full day

The student’s space is based on their time and schedules and the center will help work around your work or class schedules. Students don’t have to pay when classes aren’t in session and the center does offer child assistance help with paying for the daycare. “Majority of parents receive help with Child Care Access Means Parents in School Program (CCAMPIS) which is a Pell grant and is eligible for limited funds.” Rhodes said.

The Child Development Center currently has 18 students that help as teacher assistants and the daycare has 68 children at one time. Since the daycare is a lab learning center the children learn through play creative curriculum settings with environmental hands-on learning.

The center has students that are practicum which is a graduate level course that is often in a specialized field of study, that gives students supervised the practical application of a studied theory. Two students for the center do 20 hours a week the first semester and 20 hours their final week.

The center has a great safety plan in place for the kids, with the daycare always to be locked and supervised by staff. Once you walk into the building you will see a doorbell and keypad to enter a code which is the way to get in. The center does fire drills and tornado drills. All children will receive their own cubbies to store their belongings.

If parents have any direct concerns about their child they can talk to their teacher and ask about what meals are provided at the center. With the food being sponsored by Nelson’s Catering.

The center is here for students and parents Rhodes said, “We have a support group called MOSAIC moms, its for parents to get together and talk about the same things that they are going through with each other”. MOSAIC moms are to support moms with limited access to social support that addresses the mental health and well-being of women and children.

If your child also has a disability the center works with that too, all teachers are trained for any age of a child. Rhodes also added that if your child has a disability that a therapist is available.

There are different classrooms for the children and they are based on age groups as well. There is an art, music, science, mathematics, and a social development room. They also have a playroom inside and a playground outside. The classrooms will include the teacher and at least two student assistants. But in total there are 4 teachers and 4 student workers, and the students can also fill in for the teachers.

Rhodes told me the daycare doesn’t do field trips but instead, they do nature walks around the campus, feeding the ducks, going to the biology wing on campus and looking at the fish, with the LLCC police come over and visit the children. They even have pet guinea pigs named snickerdoodle and patches. The children love to brush their teeth Rhodes said as an activity.

They have 15 children in each classroom. The classrooms are filled with toys and books, and the walls are covered in artwork from the children and even have polls of what each child enjoys like for example what flavor of milkshake is their favorite.

The daycare also has an observation room so that teachers and staff can keep an eye on each classroom and see what the children are doing.

LLCC is very supportive of the daycare with using donations and the daycare is very diverse with families and it’s economic diverse as well, anyone can enroll their child with the center. “We are here for the students and parents, and everyone gets hugs here at the center.” Rhodes said happily.

If you would like more information or set up a tour of the facility you can email the Child Development Center at [email protected] or call the center at 217-786-2450.

Madison Mings can be reached at [email protected]