Sunshine & Rainbows Offers 33 Years of Experience
Sunshine & Rainbows Early Learning Center was established in 1985. Some of the staff, including Fairview resident and Center Director Julie Buchanan, have been there since the beginning. Regarding her favorite aspects of Sunshine & Rainbows, Buchanan said, “The children; they keep you young and joy-filled. I’ve known children who came to this program when they were two, and now they are married and bringing their children here. I like to see the children’s capacity for wonder develop and to see them gleeful over the same things that made us gleeful when we were children.” One of the recent glee bringing activities was indoor “ice skating”. The children “skated” up and down the hallways using wax paper as skates.
There are 14 classrooms at Sunshine & Rainbows, all of which are occupied each day the center is in session. They offer classes for two year olds through five year olds. There are two classes of two year olds, six classes of three year olds, four classes of four year olds and one class for five year olds (kindergarten). Additionally, they have separate classrooms with designated teachers for music, Spanish and a STEAM lab. Each class has two teachers. The teacher/student ratio for two and three year old classrooms is 2:12 and for the four and five year old rooms, 2:14. There is also a lunchroom and two playgrounds. The playgrounds are equipped with age appropriate equipment and riding toys.
Buchanan said the curriculum they use has been created by the staff over the last 33 years. She said they have combined various curriculums that are age appropriate and comprise traditional components of a preschool center. They also include age appropriate religious instruction as well as prayer in the classrooms. Once a month the children go to the main church (St. Jude Catholic Church) for a virtue themed service. They enjoy singing faith based songs in music class. The kindergarten class curriculum is based on the educational standards required by the state (TEKS).
Teachers in the four year old class and kindergarten are required to hold college degrees, many of the other teachers do as well. Buchanan describes the staff, “They are nurturing, loving and understand the developmental stages of children.”
Sunshine & Rainbows is located on the campus of St. Jude Catholic Church and many of the students at Sunshine & Rainbows are members of St. Jude. Buchanan describes the center as culturally diverse. Reviews from the parents include: “We love it because of the staff.” “It is a welcoming school environment.” “Our children are loved and safe.” Parent involvement is greatly encouraged. Buchanan said, “Being involved allows parents to make friends while being a part of school life.”
There are currently 155 children enrolled. Enrollment for the 2019 – 20 school year is Monday, Feb. 11 at 9:30 a.m. There are openings in each age group. They offer a variety of schedule options (two, three or four days a week) to meet each family’s needs. Their hours are Mon. – Thurs., 9:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. There is a summer program offered through St. Jude’s.
Sunshine & Rainbows is located at 1515 N. Greenville Ave, Allen 75002 at St. Jude Catholic Church in the education building. For more information, call 214-644-2080 or go to sunshineandrainbowselc.org.