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UNM-G daycare center to close

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UNM-Gallup administration issued a press release June 13, that effective July 31, the Early Childhood and Family Center will shutter its doors.

The center had its grand opening on May 12, 2015, and has been available to students and community members offering educational and childcare services to children from infants to preschool age.

“As an institution, we are committed to providing high quality educational services to our students,” Interim Chief Executive Officer Jerry Dominguez stated, in a press release. “We realize that a lack of childcare options can be a barrier for our students so we will work with them to identify available resources and help them start, continue and complete their education at UNM-Gallup.”

ECFC Manager Kelly Dineyazhe-Hunter sent a letter to parents on May 24, broadly stating the reasons for the closure.

“Due to the financial constraints of current operating costs, and the uncertainty of the state budget to higher education institutions, it is in the best interest of the University of New Mexico to suspend operations presently,” she said.

Petranovich echoed Dineyazhe-Hunter, saying that budget shortfalls were a contributing factor, but did not have dollar figures immediately available.

She said the college’s CFO will likely discuss budget shortfalls at the next UNM-G advisory board meeting.

Petraonvich also said the university will further explore the academic angle, such as pairing early childhood education development programs with the daycare program.

Dominguez express a similar tone in a press release.

“It is our plan to look at different operating models for the Center and hopefully re-open in the future,” he said.

Petranovich said as far she knows, no incidents or management pitfalls contributed to the looming closure.

About 12 employees will be out of job when the facility closes in July, she added.

The college’s advisory board meets at 1 pm on June 20, in the director’s conference room, 705 Gurley Ave.

By Babette Herrmann

Sun Editor