New childcare program beneficial to college students


Courtesy of Creative Commons

The program was introduced at Austin Community College this past January.

Austin Community College has partnered with the YMCA to launch an affordable child care program at their Highland campus for the Spring 2019 semester. The program began on January 28th and will extend until the end of the spring semester, but will most likely be continued by the school in the future. All colleges should consider implementing a program like this because it helps out single or working parents, and would benefit the school as well.

Programs like this are important and should be utilized by more colleges because the number of parents with young children attending college has increased, while the percentage of colleges with on-campus daycare programs has decreased. Some people may see this as a poor use of funding, but in reality it is a great way to bring in new students who may have young children that need to be watched.

To qualify for this program, the parent of the child must be currently enrolled in a class, taking a test or using a program at the Highland campus. The cost is low at just $4 an hour which is significantly cheaper than other daycare centers around Austin. Most child care programs cost upwards of $20 an hour which is much more than parents going through college should be paying. Even if a college had to charge more than $4 an hour in order for this program to succeed on their campus, it would be lower than $20 which would be easier for the parents to pay, and the school would still make money.

The program’s hours allow parents to attend classes they have either in the morning or at night because the center is open from 8am-8pm Monday through Thursday, and 8am-2pm on Fridays and Saturdays. These hours are just as convenient for the parents as a regular daycare, but the location is much better. Even at a big college, parents would be able to pick their students up right on campus after their classes and not worry about driving to another location to get their child after they have been in school for hours.

ACC now has daycare centers at multiple campuses and they plan to open more like it across their other locations around Austin. This is an easy way to draw in parents who would like to go back to school, as they know they would have a very convenient child care option. The success of these programs at ACC shows that it would be beneficial to all colleges to open centers like this on their own campuses because of the influx of students and the revenue they could make.

If more colleges introduced child care programs like this, more parents with young children would be inclined to take classes and pursue a degree. The center will benefit not only the parents, but the school as well, which ultimately makes it a great addition to their campus.