Plans to Bring Somerset Co. First Judy Center Underway - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Plans to Bring Somerset Co. First Judy Center Underway

PRINCESS ANNE, Md.- Princess Anne Elementary School will soon be home for Somerset County’s first Judy Center.

Currently, Somerset County is the only jurisdiction in Maryland that does not have the Judith P. Hoyer Early Child Care and Family Education Center, a program that provides early childhood education and support services for low-income families.

The program aims to develop literacy, language and other skills for children preparing for Kindergarten.

Aaron Rababaah, whose oldest daughter graduated from Pre-Kindergarten Tuesday, said his youngest daughter would benefit greatly from the program.

“Most schools don’t accept children until after their four, so children before need some motivation to go to school after that age,” said Rababaah, who spoke about the importance of the getting young children ready for school.

Somerset County’s School Board recently hired Early Childhood Coordinator Karen Karten. One of Karten’s first priorities is to bring a Judy Center to the county. She will apply for the grant next week. Karten has been working closely with the county’s Early Learning Advisory Council to establish the center.

“We assess the children’s readiness for kindergarten, and what we find is that children are lacking skills in the area of language and literacy, mathematics and science,” Karten said.

Karen said the program, which involves several community partnerships, will help children in those areas. Other services will help parents as well. 

“They’re going to have story time at the library, sports activities, classes for adults and financial literacy programs for adults," Karten said.

Karten expects the program to be funded July 1st and  available this September.

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