Almost two years (and one pandemic) after the West Seattle YMCA (WSB sponsor) announced its plan for a new preschool/child-care center on the north side of Westwood Village, it’s finally getting ready to open. We toured the space with its director, Jill Mudge:
She’s worked with the Y in West Seattle for 29 years and is excited about not just how the new center is coming together, but about what it will be like to work with 124 kids ages 4 weeks through 5 years. “It will be amazing to watch their growth.” The rooms at the center are spread across two levels of what used to be a vision clinic. Even former patients wouldn’t recognize the configuration – walls have been moved and removed to create the big, bright rooms.
The West Seattle area has desperately needed more chlid-care/preschool options, Mudge says – some couples whose babies haven’t arrived yet are already on a waitlist. Each infant room will have two staffers caring for up to eight babies.
While most of the rooms are age-specific, there’s also flexible space where smaller groups can have lessons, The preschool instructors will teach with The Creative Curriculum:
You might notice in that photo that some books are in Spanish – Mudge says they’ll have some bilingual instructors who can teach in Spanish as well as English. Lots of opportunities to play, too.
That includes outdoor play – by the time the center opens, an expansive playground will be set up a short walk away, in what’s currently little-used parking-lot space immediately south of the Westwood post office. Mudge also foresees the Y’s facility being a boon for the shopping center, too, with an infusion of families shopping and dining before/after picking up or dropping off their little ones. The center’s even designed with hygiene in mind – two little tot-height sinks close to the entry:
They’re expecting to be open by the end of January, 6:30 am-6 pm weekdays. Right now, the Y is offering tours of the space and taking applications – go here to find out more.