OAKHURST–A new child development center has sprung up on Indian Springs Drive. Kidz Can 2, situated at the same location as the former Indian Springs Children’s Center, is new to the mountain area but not to the child care field. The center is owned by Nancy Alejandrez and operated in conjunction with her daughter and office manager, Alyssa Ybarra. Nancy has a history of 33 years in the day care field, plus over 24 units of child care education.
Alejandrez says, “I have a passion for children and seeing smiles on their faces. My number one goal is to have smiles on our kids’ faces, which means parents are happy and can go to work knowing their children are in safe hands.”
A privately-owned family business, they hold their Oakhurst grand opening on Saturday, October 9 at 4 pm, for adults only, with dinner served. A ribbon-cutting scheduled through Oakhurst Area Chamber of Commerce takes place on Monday, October 19 at 10 a.m. Both events are open to the public, as an opportunity to view the facility and meet the staff. The business opened to child care on August 2, 2021.
Renovations are in progress, including outside paint and purchasing new items for the play yard.
The original Kidz Can 2 in Fresno has been up and running for five years, when Nancy purchased the building from the prior owner for whom she’d worked until her retirement. That building was a day care center for thirty-plus years at that time. Nancy began looking for a second location some time ago and couldn’t locate anything suitable in the Fresno region. She recently moved to Coarsegold. When she heard that Indian Springs Children’s Center had been put on the market, she knew she had to investigate. Setting up a meeting with the current owner, Nancy fell in love with the building, and the rest is history. She calls this “the biggest blessing so far.” They currently have two locations with possible plans to add a third building in the future.
The center can accommodate up to 48 children at a time, up to 24 ages 2 to 5 years old and an additional 24 from 6 to 12 years of age, with a focus on learning and providing a safe and fun environment for enrollees. Their hours of operation are Monday through Friday 6:30 am to 6 pm.
Ybarra states, “We offer a preschool program. Our children enter kindergarten fully knowing how to read and write their first and last name. They will know around 50 sight words, the alphabet and numbers 1-20. We also have a summer program for our children. We take them on eight to sixteen field trips around the valley like the movies, zoo, underground garden, area zone and this year we will be visiting the Logger. We have a Christmas program with all of our classes where the kids get to sing Christmas songs to our parents.” Asked about children whose families might not celebrate Christian holidays, Ybarra says, “We will never leave a child out. We will definitely prepare an art project that is not Christmas-related especially for them. We do make accommodations for all of our children.”
The center is operated by a staff of five, including Ybarra and Alejandrez. Plans are in the works to hire a new teacher and a cook soon. All teachers are CPR/First Aid certified with fingerprint and background checks in place. All teachers have college child development credits.
Kidz Can 2 is located at 40088 Indian Springs Road, Oakhurst, between Fresno Flats Historical Village and Our Lady of the Sierras Catholic Church, at the entrance to Oak Creek Intermediate School. Contact them at 559/683-7654. View their website (for the Fresno facility currently) at KidzCan2cdc.com.