Here’s an exciting birth announcement from The City of Boston, the Boston Housing Authority, and Nurtury (formerly known as Associated Early Care and Education):
It’s a brand new building!
The Nurtury Learning Lab at Bromley-Heath
Serving children ages 0 to 8
20,000 square feet of classroom space
14,000 square feet of outdoor learning and play areas
LEED Gold Certification
The new building had its ribbon cutting ceremony on Monday. And Boston Mayor Marty Walsh helped out with the ceremonial scissors.
“The Nurtury Learning Lab, located at the Boston Housing Authority’s (BHA) Bromley-Heath public housing development in Jamaica Plain, will anchor a campus of services for children and families,” according to a press release. The building “integrates early education, family and community learning opportunities and support, and professional development activities for early educators throughout Boston and eastern Massachusetts.”
A collaboration between the BHA and Nurtury, the Learning Lab will feature a community-based lab school for infants, toddlers, preschoolers, as well as after-school programming. “The education curriculum makes full use of the spacious, creatively-designed LEED Gold certified facility and children are encouraged to interact with the environment, which features an abundance of natural light and materials.”
“The parents are just as excited as the kids,” Robert Lewis, who grew up in Bromley-Health, told the Boston Globe. “I was talking to a couple of parents — [their children are] getting up early; they want to get there an hour early… They’re just excited about education and learning new things, and that’s really the key to everything.”
“The reason we called it a learning lab is it really was designed as a laboratory for us to learn and for others to learn,” Wayne Ysaguirre, Nurtury’s president and CEO told the Globe. “It’s important that we serve kids well, but it’s actually important that… we practice new things… There’s a lot of great information that comes out of research institutions… but it takes years before they get to practitioners.”
The Lab will serve 175 children: 63 infants and toddlers; 60 preschoolers; and 52 5- to 8-year-olds in a STEM focused after school program. The building has an art studio and science related classrooms. And Nurtury will engage parents by offering cooking classes, parenting workshops, health and wellness programs, and other activities.
The Learning Lab will also be “a professional development hub for early educators,” one with a “technologically compatible documentation room” where early educators can document their work and share their findings with colleagues. “Two early education rooms will allow early educators to observe children’s activities and development.”
“We really wanted to work with Nurtury to provide a better place for our kids to learn and play and prepare for their futures,” said BHA Administrator Bill McGonagle. “We’re excited to have the Learning Lab open and looking forward to its success.”
“All children should have access to the best learning and school readiness opportunities we can provide,” Mayor Walsh said, calling the Learning Lab a great example of a service that will greatly impact children’s lives and start them on a path for success.”