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NIH Record

New Day Care Center for NIH Preschool Planned

The NIH Preschool (also known as Parents of Preschoolers, Inc., or POPI) has been working closely with the Division of Space and Facility Management and the Division of Engineering Services in the design and development of its new day care facility, slated to open in January 2001. The new 22,000 gross square foot center will be located on the southeast side of the NIH campus, east of the Natcher Bldg. and north of Center Drive.

The interior layout of the new center will incorporate the latest child care amenities such as cable and computer connectivity, skylights, built-in lofts within classrooms, a multi-purpose room and a full service kitchen. The facility will have a fan-shape design that will allow for direct access from each of the five new large classrooms to a playground. The exterior of the facility will be constructed in light-colored stone similar to the Natcher Bldg., with large green-tinted windows. The groundbreaking for construction is set for late December 1999 or early January 2000.

The NIH Preschool has resided on the NIH campus in Bldg. 35 since June 1973 and was established through the efforts of parents and other NIH employees to offer high quality care to children of NIH'ers. Many employees are familiar with the little day care program located in the 1-story building near Old Georgetown Rd. that originally began with 18 children and through the years has grown to the present capacity of 65 children, ages 2 to 5 years. The program received recognition in 1997 from the quality of work life committee for its efforts and dedication toward improving the quality of work life for NIH employees.

The new center has been designed to accommodate the NIH Preschool's current enrollment of 65 children and provides an additional 35 spaces, bringing total enrollment capacity to 100 children. The program will be designed to accommodate four preschool classes and one accredited kindergarten program. The new center will be recertified by the Maryland state board of education as a nonpublic program - nursery school and accredited kindergarten. The program will also be reaccredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children and the state child care administration.

For more information about enrollment, applications and waiting list, contact Mary Haas, center director, at 496-5144. To learn more about the NIH Preschool and other child care programs, visit

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