Dec. 28, 2015 By Christian Murray
A large childcare facility will be opening in Court Square next year that will cater to the needs of about 190 infants/children.
The Learning Experience, which will be located at 27-28 Thomson Avenue, will take up 13,500 square feet of ground floor retail space in the Arris Lofts building, according to owner Nicole Collins. It will be comprised of 13 classrooms and will cater to six-week old babies through to 5 year-olds.
“I expect to open in spring,” Collins said. “Construction should be completed by the end of February and then I have to get my licenses.”
The facility will include a 1,200 square foot indoor playground space, which will be divided in two. One area with be for infants/toddlers, while the other for pre-schoolers. It will come with swings and slides as well as little picnic tables.
Collins, who is a Forest Hills resident and mother of three, knows the area well having worked at Citigroup in Court Square in the compliance area for a number of years.
“I used to walk by the space (Arris Lofts) all the time,” she said.
However, she went back to school for her master’s degree in early childhood education and decided to switch careers.
Collins said that there aren’t too many child care facilities that cater to babies as young as six weeks in the area. However, she believes there is a need for it.
“Most parents don’t want to have to go back to work [when their children are so young] but many often have little choice,” Collins said.
The facility will be open year round, Monday through Friday from 6:30 am to 6:30 pm, with summer camp programs during July and August.
Collins said the Learning Experience offers a program where children can learn, play and develop.
She said the program emphasizes the importance of a well-rounded education and offers a curriculum that includes computers, math, music, drama, physical fitness, dance, group play and an early reading program.