Shining Star Andrew C. is ready to learn

A Wayne County, Keystone STARS preschool helped Andrew to be ready for kindergarten in just one year!

Andrew C. Is A Shining STAR!

My son was 4 years old when he began going to Myrtis's Preschool and Day Care Center. Before that, he had responsible day care, but not as structured as we needed to get him ready for the rigors of school. He needed to be ready in just 1 year. As a teacher myself, I knew how challenging that can be. With the support of the teachers there, he received that help.

In partnership with the local school district, he went to structured classes in the morning at Myrtis's, and then classes in the afternoon at the school. These structured classes included parent-teacher conferences. At that time, he needed additional services. It was at Myrtis's that I first learned that he needed some extra help. He received the services needed, and by the time I was ready to send my son to kindergarten, he was ready without needing additional services. Today, my son is reading above his grade level.

In addition to teaching my son skills that he would need academically; he received social and behavioral education. I am lucky and grateful that my son is a well-behavior youngster. In the three years he has been in school, I may have received one negative behavioral phone call. My son was regretful, and this year, he has only been given 1 warning. Every other day, he has achieved the highest behavioral rating. Myrtis's made sure that he was used to structured care; he learned that there would be consistent consequences if he did not behave properly. Because of this early care and education, he does not display any behaviors that will hinder him in learning.

Lastly, my son continues to go to Myrtis's after school, during school recesses, and in the summer. It is wonderful to know that the teachers at the center provide additional activities to keep my son learning year-round. He has been in plays and has been given access to books and learning that is geared to his interests. What I find the most memorable is a time that all the teachers and other parents helped me and my soon out last summer due to a fire that left us having to move in just 1 day. They helped me gather needed household items and made sure my son was well care for while I looked for additional housing. They are a part of the community and a part of our family.

And now a note from the Director of Myrtis's Preschool and Creative Learning Center:

I first became a participant of the Keystone Stars Program in 2004. The program has provided my staff and me with the means to make continuous quality improvements in all domains of quality child care and education. It has brought about reflection and change in classroom environments, parent involvement, education and business practices.

I have chosen all of these nominees because the Stars program has helped all these children grow and develop in their cognitive, social-emotion, motor, creative, language, mathematical, scientific, health, and community skills. I've seen and experienced all of these children conquer great milestones and I truly believe the Keystone Stars has played a great part in their success. All children are shining stars and it is a comfort to know that our state takes pride in providing them and our center with the best possible outlets to make each and every one successful now and for years to come.

Myrtis Podejko


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