Tangelo Park’s early childhood program, affectionately called the Two-Year-Old Program, is the substance of the Tangelo Park’s achievements. The Tangelo community chose a pre-school in a home setting rather than in a day care center. The Two-Three-and Four-Year-Old Program expanded from a Community Circle Time program established in 1993 that met from 10 am to 12noon. In 1995, Rosen expanded the childcare opportunity to all children in Tangelo Park. Today there are 9-10 day care provider homes in the community—depending on the number of children–with a caregiver ratio of 1:6 under the supervision of a certified early childhood education specialist. The care providers are 4-C certified in the State of Florida. The specialist is in each home 4 times per week, managing the curriculum and program. The care providers offer developmental, social, and educational skills, 5 days/week, and 50 weeks/year from 7:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
These children develop their fine and gross motor skills and cognitive and social skills, enabling them to transition into Pre-K and Kindergarten already reading, writing, and doing simple mathematic skills. When they enter elementary school, they are fully ready and eager to begin first grade. The University of Central Florida has provided computers with printers and software to each childcare center.
This program has created 10 home-based care providers, all of whom volunteered to convert their homes in accordance with state standards and funded by Harris Rosen. Rosen also funds 1.5 nurses for the children in the care provider homes and in the Tangelo Park Elementary School. Rosen also provides the insurance coverage so the children can use the playground and meet as a large group at the Tangelo Park YMCA. When Pre-K classes were not available on the elementary school campus, Rosen paid for Head Start. Rosen also pays for a second Pre-K program on the elementary school campus.
The childcare program enables parents to go back to school or work. It eases the burden of childcare expenses. The care providers work closely with the parents of their children to complement home care and day care developmental, educational and psychological milestones. The secrets of success within the Two-Year-Old Program are the networking and team work of the care providers. The care providers enjoy the parents and children who are still attached to them, a bond that sometimes continues through college. The program has also helped put care providers’ children through college.
To enroll in the program you will need:
1. Up-to-date shot record
2. Up-to-date physical
3. Child’s birth certificate
4. A recent bill in the parent and/or guardian’s name or proof of lease at a Tangelo Park address
5. Driver’s license or photo ID at a Tangelo Park address