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Your Auraria Early Learning Center questions answered

Learn how to join the AELC wait list and how the center has adapted to the impacts of Covid-19.

By Lindsey Coulter

February 10, 2021

Auraria Early Learning Center logo.Auraria Early Learning Center staff members recognize the critical role the center plays in providing exceptional care and education for children as the campus community (and community at large) navigates the ever-changing challenges of Covid-19. Learn how the center continues to serve the Auraria Campus and how to apply for enrollment.

Is the Auraria Early Learning Center still open?

Yes. The Auraria Early Learning Center continues to operate under all health, safety and child-care guidelines set forth by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment and other licensing organizations to protect employees, children and their families.

What is the center’s capacity?

Under normal operations, the AELC maintains 12 classrooms that accommodate 250 enrolled children. Due to Covid-19 distancing guidelines, however, the AELC had to reduce enrollment to keep children and staff safe. In adherence with safety guidelines, the AELC reduced its capacity to nine classrooms serving 92 enrolled children. 

The pandemic also has made it hard to find qualified full-time staff to fill vacant positions. And with the current Covid-19 precautions and many classes being delivered remotely, the center has faced difficulty hiring students as teacher aides to support the supervising teachers, compounding enrollment challenges.

How can I apply to enroll my child?

Under normal operations, the AELC offers three enrollment opportunities, each about a month prior to the beginning of a new semester. This includes an open-enrollment opportunity for students with children during which families participate in a lottery for spots where they draw a number upon entry. Each number is called in numerical order until an age group is full. On the next day, the same process is conducted for staff and faculty members. Any remaining spots are then offered to the community.

Under current circumstances, however, the AELC is keeping a list of interested families who will be contacted when the center is able to open another room. Any vacancies will be filled with the established contacts. 

To be added to the contact list, please fill out the AELC’s online enrollment form. Additional enrollment questions can be directed to Emily Nelson, interim director.

How is the center funded?

The AELC is 100% funded by the parents who enroll their children in the ELC.  It is not funded via the general fund by all institutions, our student enrollment or a fee. 

How can I learn more about the AELC?

Please visit the center’s webpage for information on hours of operation, the center’s Colorado Shines rating, philosophy of care and more.

Topics: AHEC

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