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Developments > NorthStar Learning Center

NorthStar Learning Center

Project at a Glance:
New Bedford
Development Type:
Northstar Learning Centers, Inc.

a new state-of-art early education and community center. This new Center will eliminate two outdated facilities; be operationally and fiscally efficient; and expand enrollment capacity by 70% - to 134 children between the ages of 0 and 5. Ninety-five percent of NorthStar’s early education and care program “graduates” test ready for kindergarten in New Bedford, compared to 66% of children statewide. NorthStar takes in children who have been expelled from other early education and care settings, and never gives up on any child. Like all of NorthStar’s programs, mental health training and support for teachers are embedded in the program and mental health services are available for families. This new Center will have several lab training classrooms in partnership with UMass Dartmouth, preparing the new generation of early childhood educators. The facility will be state of art inside and outside, literally designed to meet the developmental and learning needs of this age group. With a commercial kitchen, NorthStar will employ a full time cook to ensure that all meals fed to children are homemade, with well-being in mind. NorthStar's Manifest Love program - in partnership with other local organizations - will use the kitchen and kitchen storage capacity to continue to more broadly provide healthy food for families. Evenings and weekends this commercial kitchen will be part of the Community Center aspect of this project, for community events and for use by food entrepreneurs. Further, the large indoor multipurpose space adjacent to the kitchen will provide indoor gross motor space for the children and offer flexible space for the community. With the opening of this Center NorthStar will offer 14 new FT jobs with excellent benefits, and will also allow 55 parents or caregivers to get into the local workforce, with their children in excellent hands at NorthStar.