23 Jun YPG Child Development Center updates preschool classroom
YUMA — The preschool class entering the fall 2023 school year and going forward will get to experience the newly renovated classroom at U.S. Army Yuma Proving Ground’s Child Development Center (CDC).
The CDC was built in 1989 and had an outdated floorplan which led to dings when it came to inspections explains Child and Youth Services Director, Sommer Cloinger.
“The classroom has seen various improvements throughout the years but one of the biggest things structural wise that was a problem as inspections developed, was there was a lot of blind spots, for what the room has evolved into.”
The biggest of those blind spots was the immediate wall blocking the view through the room when walking into the classroom. That structure housed the bathrooms which were in the middle of the classroom. In current times this went against the Higher Headquarters Inspection and the Multidisciplinary Inclusion Team standards requirements.
After an abundance of behind the scenes work to obtain approvals, plans and funding on March 6 the demolition crew took over and gutted the entire room. Cloinger describes the work.
“They tore out the entire floor, they took out the structure that was in the middle of the room, they have laid the floors down, they have added new plumbing, so they can relocate the booth rooms.”
The bathrooms that were once obstructing views across the classroom are now placed against the left wall as are two closets along the same wall.
Cloinger praises the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for their diligent work.
“They have communicated everything from the flooring to the cabinets, to the mirrors, to the actual construction on what to expect.”
Cloinger and CDC staff feared they might have to close the center because of the construction and were prepared with their contingency plans yet they haven’t seen much of a disruption aside from not being able to use that room.
“They coordinated with the people doing the construction and demo and some of the demolition was done on the weekend so it wouldn’t disturb the kids.”
CDC staff have been pleasantly surprised by the progress.
“They have worked diligently, quietly, fast, they have done amazing work in such a short period of time.”
The CDC has temporarily moved the preschool kids to the Strong Beginnings classroom which is a bit smaller than the preschool room. One perk due to the construction is having the preschool Strong Beginning kids learn out of the Youth Services building during school hours which is where they will be headed next year if they continue receiving before and after care through Youth Services.
When the classroom is complete everything will be new including the furniture and it will create more space so the CDC will open additional spots in the preschool classroom.