By Rod Powers
Gulfport Child Development Care includes the Child Development Center (CDC), Home Program (CDH) and School Age Care Program (SAC). All programs are inspected by CNIC yearly and must maintain DoD certification to operate.
The CDC offers child care services for children aged 6 weeks through 5 years old, including full-time, hourly drop-in (based on available space) and a Pre-Kindergarten program. The Child Development Home program consists of certified providers who provide child care services for children in their own home. The care is offered to children aged 6 weeks through 12 years old. The School Age Care Program provides care before and after school, transportation to several schools and back to the center for children ages kindergarten through 12 years old. The Youth Activities Center has a complete schedule of summer, spring break and winter break programs for children attending kindergarten through age 12 years.
The CDC has a capacity for 285 children and CHD providers number from 12 to
20 on average. There is only one SAC program on the base.
The CDC is open 6 am until 5:30 pm, Monday through Friday, and offers Full Day, Part Day, Preschool Part Day, School Age Hourly Care and Special Needs Care. Proper information required about special needs and approval required for After/Before school programs on installation. All fees are according to total family income and a current Leave and Earning statement (LES) and payroll data must be provided.
Fees include lunch and programming. There is a $5 discount for more than one child. Also, there is a fee of $3 per hour per child for drop-ins (as space is available). Hourly care is strictly based on space available and parents can call up to a week in advance to seek space. Late fees are assessed at $25 per child for every 30 minutes you are late picking up your child.
First Priority Care is given to children of single parents and dual military.
Children must meet all eligibility requirements and have proof of military dependency. Registration for programs can be made locally or through the internet. There is a waiting list; however you can sign up online. Parents are expected to update their child monthly to remain active on the waiting list. All referrals for child care spaces are made from the waiting list.