The Christian County Public Schools board of education continued to prepare for the opening of the new Inspire Early Learning Academy on Thursday night at the regular monthly meeting by approving a parent handbook for the upcoming childcare facility.

The center was approved last month by the board and will provide high-quality childcare for employees of Christian County Schools — as well as industry partners in the area. The center will be located at Martin Luther King, Jr. Elementary school. The Inspire Early Learning Academy is a partnership with the South Western Kentucky Economic Development Council to help ease the burden of finding childcare in the area.

Businesses from the industrial park have pledged close to $80,000 to fund the start-up costs associated with opening the center.

The handbook sets the cost for tuition at $150 per week for each student.

“That is an all-inclusive payment,” said CCPS assistant superintendent Jessica Addison. “That means parents don’t have to bring food or snacks — it covers that. If we had a planned field trip or something like that, it would be included in that weekly tuition.”

The board discussed giving a tuition discount for having multiple children enrolled in the facility, but Addison said that until it was determined how self-sustaining the preschool can be, that won’t be an option.

Parents enrolling more than one child, however, will be exempt from paying the enrollment fee more than once.

Addison said that so far this month, the administration has been getting the word out to other teachers and staff about the Inspire Academy.

“January has been all about taking that information to our faculty and staff at each school campus,” Addison said. “We’ve been working to make sure all CCPS staff are informed of this upcoming opportunity in advance of us offering signups for those spots.”

The handbook approved Thursday also allows district employees to opt for a 10-month plan if they don’t work in the summer.

“We know that will be helpful for many of our employees,” Addison said. “I know it would have been for me when my children were young. I still paid in the summer, every week.”

Addison said that right now, the plan is to start allowing registration for the Inspire Academy on Feb. 1.

“Those that are first come, first served on that list would have access to those spots until they are no longer available,” Addison said.

She said that the administration is currently looking for grants and other funding opportunities that would allow them to lower the cost for parents.

“We’re looking for anything we can do to help with expenses would help us to possibly reduce that tuition payment,” Addison said.

Also at Thursday’s meeting, assistant superintendent Josh Hunt got board approval to reconvene the local planning committee for the purpose of looking into possibly moving sixth grade students back into the middle schools.

“If we’re going to do any changes like that, we’re going to have to revisit the local planning committee,” Hunt said.

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