Learning Lamp’s Jennerstown Daycare Closure

The search for the learning lamp for a new daycare center in Jennerstown has been unsuccessful so far. But the organization’s executive director said they still hope a solution exists, somewhere within the North Star School District.

“The center closes at the end of April,” said Leah Spangler, CEO of The Learning Lamp.

“We didn’t find the right person, but we worked with the families so that everyone had a care solution in other places. We continue to search for a new home in the North Star School District.

About 34 children were enrolled in the Jennerstown daycare. Almost half of these children were enrolled in full-time child care, while the remainder participated in before- and after-school child care.

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Some of the children in full-time care have moved to other locations in The Learning Lamp’s child care program, while others are in the care of another provider close to the North Star School District, but not inside.

“A lot of families have already made the switch to other locations,” Spangler said, noting that children in before and after school care can continue to meet at the Jennerstown location for the rest of the year. school.

All Jennerstown staff are also moving to other Learning Lamp facilities, she added.

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Even if a new location became available today in the school district, Spangler said, there isn’t enough time to go through the state-required inspection and licensing to prevent the center from closing.

Learning Lamp employees, however, have not stopped looking for another viable option for the Jennerstown center to reopen in the future.

“We’re still hoping something will pop up,” Spangler said, “but we don’t know when.”

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A construction project is also not an option, as The Learning Lamp’s plans to renovate the Somerset day care center are underway. Spangler said bids will soon be awarded for the first phase of this project, which converts a currently unused part of the building into classrooms.

A renovation project is due to start soon at The Learning Lamp's Somerset daycare.  A currently unused part of the building - which once housed a fitness center - is to be converted into additional classroom space.

“We’re in the middle of the Somerset Center project right now, and we can’t do two projects at once,” Spangler said.

“Building bids for Central Somerset have been much higher than initial estimates, so we are continuing to fundraise for this project.”