Salvation Army Philadelphia Day Care program honored

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Citadel_daycare_reallynewsThe Salvation Army Philadelphia Citadel Corps Community Center Day Care earned Pennsylvania Keystone STARS “STAR 2” certification, reserved for child care organizations that have demonstrated efforts towards continuing education for staff members, providing a higher standard of educational opportunities for children, and meeting city criteria for educational topics.

The Keystone STARS initiative of the Office of Child Development and Early Learning (OCDEL) works to improve, support and recognize the continuous quality improvement efforts of early learning programs in Pennsylvania.

Located in the Lawncrest neighborhood of Philadelphia, The Salvation Army program offers both before and after-school care for school-aged children, including early mornings from 6:00 – 8:00 a.m. and evenings from 2:45 – 6:30 p.m. The center offers homework help, experiential learning, and project-based learning for children in grades K-9. In the summer months when school is out of session, the day care offers full-time care for approximately 160 children.

According to Monica Menten, director of youth services for the center, it’s rare for a part-time day care in Philadelphia to earn the STAR 2 level of accreditation.

“We are thrilled to receive this recognition, which will have a huge impact on our services especially during the summer months when we offer full-time care,” Menten said. “This has amazing implications for us. So much of education is going online, from online tutoring to virtual tours. There’s a great digital divide; it’s very hard for the working class to have access to technology. Before, we were worried about meeting the basic welfare of our students. Now, we’ll be able to offer more cutting edge programming to more students, as this makes our services more affordable for families.”

The Salvation Army Philadelphia Citadel Corps Community Center provides tutoring, re-enhancement of basic lessons taught in public schools, extracurricular enrichment, and emergent literacy.

“We’re proud to say that our facility has one of the best retention rates in the city,” Menten said. “We are very family oriented. We also now have the ability to implement programming that’s both effective and meaningful, to the point where my students have returned as staff members years later.”

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