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Children's School Updates

10/27/2011

Dear Children’s School Parents,

I last wrote to you in August with updates on how the pending sale of our property at Westmoreland Place would affect the Children’s School. I have exciting news to report: the Infant/Toddler program is coming home to our California Blvd. campus, the same place where it began in the early 1970s. As an added benefit, our children will soon be the beneficiaries of a new built-from-the-ground-up library to open next fall between La Loma House and Peppers Yard. We’ve been carefully planning the details for each initiative and want to share the latest developments on both projects:

Our New Infant/Toddler Space

This will be the last semester our Infant/Toddler program will be housed at Westmoreland.  Starting early next year, the library space in La Loma House will be the new home for our Infant/Toddler program. Between now and then, we will hire an architect to design an optimum environment for our infants, toddlers, and their families. The space will be remodeled with refinished floors, a new bathroom, new deck, fresh paint, storage, an outdoor play environment, which will be the program’s permanent home. The plan is to have all of this work done by the time everybody comes back in 2012 from the holiday break.

Plan for Our New Library

To make room for the new Infant/Toddler program space, the library will first move temporarily to upstairs La Loma House and then eventually relocate to its new building.  During this time of transition the library will go on the road for the entire spring semester; with our librarian visiting every classroom with books, puppets, and flannel board stories during scheduled story-hour times. Parents and teachers will still be able to go upstairs to check out books, although building code won’t allow for children to occupy the upper level.

We see these projects as benefiting our school on many fronts. For one the Infant/Toddler program will again become integrated as part of the entire Children’s School community. The move means that parents with children at both locations will no longer be asked to commute between California Blvd. and Westmoreland. Another advantage for our infants and toddlers will be the natural flow between the indoor and outdoor environment. Children will be able to move about freely from the classroom to the porch to the play yard. The teachers and parents will be able to take their cues from the child, which is in keeping with our educational philosophy. As an added benefit we will soon be able to enjoy a newly designed library.

Our guiding principle throughout both projects is to do everything in a thoughtful way with an eye toward transparency. We will be scheduling community meetings to share our plans and architectural drawings in the near future.
A national model with more than 1,000 visitors a year, The Children’s School is influential in the design of early childhood play spaces, not just in Pasadena but well beyond the borders of our community. Our goal from the beginning has been to advance this commitment of excellence by ensuring that both new spaces will be a point of pride for Pacific Oaks while making our Children’s School an even better environment for learning and exploration with a commitment to preeminence, quality, and safety.

Please write, call, or stop by with your questions and ideas. I look forward to sharing more information with you in the days ahead.


Sincerely,

Jane E. Rosenberg
Executive Director
Pacific Oaks Children’s School