Frequently Asked Questions

How is the Lighthouse for Children Child Development Center (Center) related to First 5 Fresno County and the Fresno County Office of Education (FCOE)?

The Center represents an innovative partnership between First 5 Fresno County (F5FC) and the Fresno County Office of Education (FCOE). As a part of its strategic plan, First 5 Fresno County built the Lighthouse for Children and is providing FCOE the space to operate the Center.

When will the Child Development Center open?

In mid-April, the Center opened one infant and one preschool classroom. The goal is for the Center to open all classrooms by or before July 2016.

How many classes will the Center operate?

The Center will operate a total of six classrooms.

What are the age ranges for each classroom and the adult to child ratios?

Infants: 6 weeks to 18 months (1 adult per 3 children)

Toddler: 18 to 36 months (1 adult per 4 children)

Preschool: 3 to 5 years (1 adult per 8 children)

Does the Center offer full-time and part-time care?

The Center only offers full time care.

Who can enroll at the Center?

All families can apply for enrollment at the Center.

How do you define downtown Fresno?

We use the City of Fresno’s definition of downtown Fresno, which is the area within the “triangle” bound by the 180, 41 and 99 freeways. Click here to view a map of the area.

How will children be selected for enrollment?

A public lottery will be held to determine which children will be enrolled in the Center. Interested families must be eligible for enrollment to enter the lottery. To be eligible, a child’s legal guardian must live or work in downtown Fresno. If the initial lottery does not fill all enrollment slots, families living and working outside of downtown Fresno will have an opportunity to apply for enrollment.

When is the lottery and how can I enter my child in the lottery?

To enter the lottery, families must complete the pre-enrollment form (click here to download) and return to the First 5 Fresno County offices at the Lighthouse for Children (2405 Tulare Street) or via email at no later than 5:30 p.m. on Monday, January 4, 2015. The enrollment lottery will be held at 5:30 p.m. on Monday, January 11, 2016 at the Lighthouse for Children. Families are invited and encouraged to attend this public lottery.

How can I apply for the First 5 Scholarship Program?

To be eligible for the First 5 Scholarship Program, families must meet particular income guidelines. Please view the chart located here to determine if your family meets the First 5 Scholarship Program income guidelines.

Are parents who have an alternative payment resource able to apply?

We accept alternative payments such as CalWORKs, Supportive Services, Central Valley Children’s Services Network, and PACE Alternative Payment Program.  Enrollment is contingent upon availability of open slots and the agency’s funding.

How much is tuition at the Center?

Click here to see tuition rates.

What are the Center’s hours of operation?

The Center is open Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Program Closed for Observance for listed Holidays: (May 30th, 2016 Memorial Day)

Independence Day       07/04/16

Labor Day                          09/05/16

Veteran’s Day                   11/11/16

Thanksgiving Day           11/24/16

Local Holiday                    11/25/16

Christmas Eve                    12/23/16

Christmas Day                   12/26/16

New Year’s Day                 01/02/17

Martin Luther King         01/16/17

Lincoln’s Day                     02/13/17

President’s Day                  02/20/17

Local Holiday                      04/14/17

May I visit my child while he is attending the center?

Parents are always welcome to visit their children.

Are there any extra fees for supplies?

No, there are no extra fees. Tuition has been determined based upon the cost of providing quality services including, materials, supplies, equipment, and a well-qualified, educated staff.

Is there a breastfeeding room available?

Yes. We have rooms available in the Child Development Center, as well as on the 2nd floor.

What curricula and/or approaches are implemented in the Child Development Center?

We implement the Program for Infant/Toddler Care Approach (PITC) approach in our infant and toddler classrooms. The PITC approach to care emphasizes developing responsive relationships with infants and their families. The preschool curriculum encompasses a variety of educational approaches including the Reggio Emilia inspired Project Approach, Child Centered Emergent Curriculum, and Creative Curriculum to provide rich experiences for the children.

Does my child need to be potty-trained to be enrolled at the Center?

Children do not need to be potty-trained to attend the Center. Teachers partner with families and offer potty-training for students who need it.

I’ve heard the Center is an innovation lab/demonstration site. What does that mean?

To encourage a well-trained child development workforce in Fresno County, college students/interns,  and professionals in the child development field may observe and/or interact with children enrolled at the Center. All individuals who interact with the children enrolled at the Center are fingerprinted and undergo a background check.

How can I apply for employment at the Center?

To apply for a job at the Center, visit FCOE’s EdJoin page located here.

What qualifications do the teachers have in your program?

Our ECE Teachers hold a minimum of an A.S. Degree or the required experience  and units to qualify for the California Department of Education, Commission on Teacher Credentialing Child Development Teacher permit or higher.  All the staff will be required to maintain their Child Development status through further education or professional Growth activities.

Is parking available at the Center?

Parking at the Lighthouse for Children is available for Center families during the time they are dropping off and picking up their children. Families will not be permitted to park in the parking lot for other purposes. Metered parking is available near the Lighthouse for Children should families have other business to attend in the area.

Are there other childcare options you can refer me to?

Yes. Please contact Central Valley Children’s Services Networks F.I.N.D. Care  at  (559) 456-8195.