With so many demands on today's families, parents need all the support they can get. That's
why child care at the Y is about more than looking after kids. It's about nurturing their
development, by providing a safe place to learn foundational skills, develop healthy,
trusting relationships and building self-reliance through the Y core values of caring,
honesty, respect and responsibility.
Safe Kids…..Our Commitment
Parents place their trust in the YMCA to help their children and youth thrive. Our core
values-caring, honesty, respect, and responsibility-are part of everything we do. Because
of this, we place great value on ensuring a safe environment.
Child Protection Steps
State Licensed Early Child Care
The YMCA of Central Ohio proudly offers full-day infant-through-preschool child care
at three Educare Centers in Columbus. Our Educare Centers are licensed by the Ohio
Department of Job and Family Services and accredited by the National Association
for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC). Children in our Educare programs are
cared for in a warm, caring and safe environment. Staff are well trained in early
childhood education and follow age-appropriate lesson plans that are designed to
stimulate childrens' minds as well as provide a fun and creative day for your child.
The YMCA of Central Ohio offers State Licensed Preschool programs in 4 YMCA branches.
Our preschool programs also follow an educational enriching curriculum that focuses
on kindergarten readiness, character development, health and fitness, diversity and
values education. Swim time is available at some locations. YMCA Preschool is a great
way for your child to interact with other children and gain the social skills they will
need as they grow and mature into school-agers.
The Head Start Program is a program of the United States Department of Health and Human
Services that provides comprehensive education, health, nutrition, and parent involvement services to low-income
children and their families. The program's services and resources are designed to foster stable family relationships,
enhance children's physical and emotional well-being, and establish an environment to develop strong cognitive skills.
The transition from preschool to kindergarten imposes diverse developmental challenges that include requiring the
children to engage successfully with their peers outside of the family network, adjust to the space of a classroom,
and meet the expectations the school setting provides.
State Licensed School-Age Child Care
Before/After - School Care
The YMCA of Central Ohio offers state-licensed before and/or after-school care at
over 50 locations throughout Central Ohio. While our programs allow for activity
choice, they provide an educationally based curriculum which includes homework
assistance and a fitness component.
School Days Off
The YMCA is committed to Central Ohio communities. During the school year, there
are many occasions for schools to close, such as parent/teacher conference days,
single day holidays and longer holiday breaks. On these days, the YMCA offers full-day
child care, "School Days Off," from 7 am-6 pm at select branches. Pre-registration
for School Days Off may be necessary.
Emergency Weather Days
The YMCA of Central Ohio is committed to ensuring Central Ohio families with safe,
accessible child care options when schools close due to weather emergencies when possible.
Select YMCA branches offer full-day child care for school-agers during most weather emergency
situations. Please call ahead on emergency weather days to check if the program is able to
operate. Pre-registration for School Days Off may be necessary.
Food Program & Y-Kids Are Fit
Ohio Department of Education
The YMCA is proud to participate in the Child and Adult Care Food Program. The
goal of this program is to increase the YMCA's ability to meet the nutritional needs
of children in our care by getting reimbursed for meals and snacks that meet CACFP
requirements. In addition, we promote understanding of the role of nutrition in
the physical, mental and social health of children and help develop positive food
attitudes and eating behaviors.
Moving Kids Towards a Healthy Lifestyle
The YMCA of Central Ohio contracts with schools & organizations to provide the
Y-Kids Are Fit curriculum or programs can opt to have their own staff implement the curriculum.
Y-Kids Are Fit gives children the opportunity to participate in regular physical activity and to
learn about healthy choices is what Y-Kids are Fit is all about. The focus of the program is on
fitness, health and nutrition.