Child Care and Education Services

Malmstrom's Child and Youth Programs

The Malmstrom child and youth programs assist Department of Defense military and civilian personnel in balancing the competing demands of the accomplishment of the DoD mission and family life by managing and delivering a system of quality, available and affordable programs and services for eligible children and youth, birth through 18 years of age.  

All child care programs are part of the 341st Force Support Squadron's Family Member Programs.  The Training and Curriculum Section of the Family Member Programs provides leadership, support and comprehensive training to ensure staff and volunteers are well prepared to work with Malmstrom's young children and youth. This training contributes to the readiness of staff, providers and volunteers to provide quality programs for children and families. 

In addition to developing and managing appropriate curriculum, goals and objectives that promote children's social, emotional, cognitive and physical growth, the Training and Curriculum Specialist is also a valuable resource for parents desiring information on child development, special needs and a variety of parenting topics.

It is a common belief that child development and youth programs have a dramatic impact on the lives of the children who are enrolled in them. Early and middle childhood experiences are critical in determining a child's attitudes towards learning, social interactions and self-esteem. The attitudes and beliefs children develop early on stay with them throughout their lives. If their experiences are positive, then children's lives are enriched and their capabilities strengthened. The key factor in whether a program has this positive effect on children is the quality of the program. One of the critical elements in a quality program is quality training for staff, providers, volunteers and parents.

The Family Member Programs Flight Training and Curriculum Specialist serves as the focal point for development, implementation and maintenance of a training and curriculum program designed to meet the needs of the Youth Activities Center's school-age program, the Child Development Center and the licensed Family Child Care homes on Malmstrom Air Force Base. Staff and Family Child Care providers are required, by Air Force and DoD regulations to have a minimum of 21 to 24 hours of training annually. The FMP programs far exceed this requirement each year, with many individuals completing two to three times the required training.

Watching young children grow and develop new skills is one of the most rewarding parts of being involved in the lives of children. Quality training enables the FMP staff and providers to meet the developmental needs of children entrusted to their care. By understanding what to expect of children at various ages and stages of development, staff and providers can plan a curriculum that allows children to develop their optimum potential; physically, intellectually, socially and emotionally.  For questions or concerns regarding the training and/or curriculum of the FMP, call 731-2230 or email them by clicking here.


The following outlines several different Family Member Programs available to Malmstrom members, as well as various youth after school and education programs:


CHILD DEVELOPMENT CENTER

Malmstrom's Child Development Center provides center-based care for children 6 weeks to 5 years of age. The CDC provides care to children of active-duty military and Department of Defense and Non-Appropriated Fund civilian personnel families. The center is committed to providing the best developmental experiences for all children. The curriculum is designed to meet the cognitive, social, emotional and physical needs of children by using developmentally age-appropriate activities.  Below outlines different qualities of the CDC to guide parents through making the best possible decision for their children:
  • The Child Development Center was nationally accredited by NAEYC, the National Association for the Education of Young Children, on Dec. 22, 2008. This is a mark of quality in early childhood education and a measure achieved by only 8 percent of all child care centers nationwide.
     
  • All CDC staff is certified in CPR and First Aid. In addition, the staff exceeds the required amount of annual training by more than 100 percent.
     
  • Staff development is key.  Ten CDC staff members have completed degrees, four are currently pursuing degrees and 15 have earned the Child Development Associate credential.
     
  • The CDC program focuses on each child's individual needs as well as their social, emotional and intellectual development.
     
  • The CDC staff works as a team thus allowing them to be creative and use their education and experience to create imaginative programs.
     
  • The staff is carefully selected on the basis of educational background, experience and ability to meet the individual needs of the children in the program. The staff is continually learning new ideas through training courses and workshops; they strive to ensure the best possible care is available to Malmstrom's children.
Child care programs include infant care, pre-toddler care, toddler care and pre-school care.  

Infant care
The CDC's infant program is designed for children 6 weeks to 12 months. In order to meet each baby's individual needs and developmental stages, the CDC has four separate rooms - two for 6 weeks to 6 months and two for 6 months to 12 months.  The staff cares for each child in an environment filled with color and stimulation. To maintain continuity, a daily individual file is kept on each child's progress in the early developmental stages. Parents are provided with daily reports.

Pre-toddler care
The pre-toddler program cares for children ages 12 months to 24 months. The staff is carefully selected to give each child the care, stimuli, security and consistency they need at this time and throughout their childhood.  The program has been designed to develop a sense of awareness in the areas of color, sound, textures and feelings. The curriculum prepares the children towards their first step of independence before going into the toddler program. The staff maintains a daily file on each child's progress and will provide parents with a daily report.

Toddler care
The toddler program is for children ages 2 years to 3 years old. The program staff is trained to guide each child through the various stages of development when he/she is physically, emotionally and socially ready.  The toddlers enjoy safe and protective surroundings to explore and develop new abilities. Self-help skills such as toilet training, dressing, eating and hand washing are important parts of this program. Art, music, finger-painting, sand and water play, exercise and imaginative play are also a part of this program. Each child's participation in these activities increases vocabulary and language skills and develops fine and gross motor skills.

Pre-school care
The pre-school program is for children ages 3 years to 5 years old. The program staff provides the care needed to guide each child's social, emotional, intellectual and physical development.  Pre-schoolers begin to experience the joy of self-expression in music, science, art, movement and more. There is also story time, a writing center and organized games. Emphasis is placed on learning to share with friends, developing self-help skills and respect for others.

Family members, ages 6 weeks to 5 years old, of active-duty military members and Department of Defense or Non-Appropriated Fund civilians are eligible to use the CDC. The present center has an enrollment capacity of 180. To enroll parents must:
  • Download and complete DD Form 2606, Request for Care
  • Complete DD Form 2652, Application for DoD Child Care Fees
  • Complete AF Form 357, Family Care Plan (single and dual military families)
  • Submit copy of most current LES and/or pay stub
  • Sign CDC contract
Parents of children who cannot be accommodated in the CDC at the time care is required must complete DD Form 2606, DoD Child Development Program Request for Care Record. The CDC staff can provide parents with the Priority Placement Policy.

Fees and charges are based on total family income and are adjusted annually in accordance with the Military Child Care Act of 1989/1996.

The CDC participates in the U.S. Department of Agriculture Food Program; children are served a nutritious breakfast, lunch and snacks throughout the day.
The CDC is open Monday through Friday from 6:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and closed on Saturdays, Sundays, Federal Holidays, and Air Force Global Strike Command Family and Wing Down Days.  Click here to see CDC fees.

For further information, or to find out how to enroll children, call the CDC at 731-2417 or email them by clicking here.


FAMILY CHILD CARE

Family Child Care programs consist of in-home care provided by licensed and affiliated providers. Trained FCC providers are available for day, night, weekend and unusual hours of care for children 2 weeks to 12 years of age.

Providers are required to complete an extensive training program and are constantly monitored for quality to maintain their license. Family Child Care is a realistic alternative to a center-based care program. FCCs provide home-like, individualized care.  FCC programs benefit military families by providing care for children whose parents have a variety of work schedules, including evenings and weekends.  The program provides a quality alternative to center-based programs and expands the availability of childcare at Malmstrom. FCC homes are an integral part of the Family Member Programs. Each home is monitored on a monthly basis by the Family Child Care coordinator. There are also unannounced visits by representatives from fire, safety, public health and other related base agencies.

The FCC philosophy is to nurture the child through care, understanding, love and affection. FCC homes provide a relaxed atmosphere where a child can develop to his or her full potential. Providers encourage children to grow intellectually, physically, socially and emotionally through a daily routine of play and recreation.

The Family Childcare Program is  currently accepting applications for providers to care for infant, drop-in, night, weekend, special needs, mildly ill care, extended-duty care and missile care programs.  

Become an FCC provider
The following are requirements to become an FCC provider; the applicant must:
 
  • Be a spouse of an active-duty or retired military member living on- or off-base
  • Be at least 18 years old
  • Have the ability to ready, speak and write English
  • Be physically and mentally capable of providing care
  • Be willing and able to complete the required training and agree to the requirements of becoming an FCC provider
  • Be able to obtain the required insurance coverage.
  • Participate in a home interview with your family members.
  • Have no conviction of, admission to, or evidence of family violence, child abuse or neglect, alcohol abuse or use of illegal drugs.
In accordance with AFI 34-276, Family Child Care Programs, Para 1.3: "Any individual caring for other families' children a total of more than 10 hours a week on a regular basis must be licensed to provide care in on-base quarters." Unlicensed childcare on Malmstrom is a violation of base policy and may result in loss of base housing privileges. Applications and information on becoming a FCC provider are available through the FCC Coordinator's Office.  As FCC providers, approved applicants will receive: 
  • Pre-licensing and other required training
  • Monthly and quarterly training sessions
  • Assistance with preparing curriculum and developmentally appropriate activities
  • Training on how to use appropriate guidance techniques
  • Assistance in earning a Child Development Associate credential
  • Free lending program: supplies, outdoor play equipment, books, games, toys, safety gates, first aid kits, mats, child-sized tables and chairs, arts and craft supplies, child-sized plates, cups, and utensils, and much more.

Find an FCC provider
Providers and their homes are different and unique just as families are. Please arrange an interview with a potential FCC Provider to assure compatibility. The FCC Provider you select will play an important role in your child's life. Most of your child's waking hours will be spent with that Provider. The Provider will guide, teach, and nurture your child.

The following are items to check for and questions to ask when interviewing a potential provider:
  • Is the home kept clean?
  • Is there room for children to play indoors and outdoors?
  • Is there a place for naps?
  • Is the home free of safety hazards?
  • Does the provider seem to know a lot about child development and childcare?
  • Does the provider seem to truly like children and are they patient with the children?
  • What training has the provider had?
The FCC providers set fees. Prior to starting care families must complete a written contract regarding fees and policies and provide proof of immunizations.  Below are some other points to remember when finding care:
 
  • Visit the FCC home anytime during the day and check to see what kind of care is being provided
  • Discuss individual goals for the child and work with the provider to accomplish those goals
  • Keep the Provider informed about the health of each child; if a child is ill and will not be going to the FCC home, notify the provider as soon as possible
  • Pay for fees on time - the provider deserves consideration
  • Be thoughtful and considerate of the provider - drop off and pick up children on time or call for late drop offs or pick ups
More information on the FCC program can be obtained by calling them at 731-2116, emailing them by clicking here or by visiting the Malmstrom FCC Facebook page, here.


YOUTH PROGRAMS

Youth Programs provides activities and programs that improve and maintain the physical and mental well-being of youth ages 6 to 18.  The YP facility has a full sized gym, which also serves as an indoor roller-skating rink; game room with pool, foosball, air hockey and video games; TV room; ballroom; snack bar and school-age care wing.  YP also has an outdoor play area, basketball court and four baseball/softball fields.

Youth, ages 6 to 18, are eligible for annual memberships. The annual fee is $40 per child and is pro-rated quarterly. All memberships expire annually on Sept. 30.  Those with a YP membership receive a photo ID card, a "videos for kids" membership (with more than 200 video games), discounted or free selected programs and activities, and a monthly newsletter.

As per AFI 34-249, participation in youth programs is limited to youth up to 18 years old. Children 5 years and under are allowed to participate only in those activities organized specifically for their group. Family members of active duty, retired military, or Department of Defense and Non-Appropriated Fund civilian personnel are allowed to participate in programs and activities. Children 6 to 8 years old must be accompanied by a parent or sibling older than 16 years of age unless they are participating in an organized, supervised activity.

Parents must complete an AF Form 88, Youth Programs Application, whether their child is participating as a member or non-member.

Youth Program hours are Monday through Thursday from 3 to 7 p.m., Friday from 3 to 8 p.m. and Closed Saturdays, Sundays, holidays and Air Force Global Strike Command family days.  For more information, contact YP by calling 731-4634, email them by clicking here or visit their Facebook page, here.


PARENT'S ADVISORY BOARD

The Parent Advisory Board includes parents from all family member programs, including the Child Development Center, Family Child Care and Youth Programs.  The purpose of the board is to:
  • Function in an advisory capacity, providing recommendations for improving services in all Family Member Program areas
  • Improve staff and parent communications
  • Increase parent's knowledge of developmentally appropriate practices in FMP activities
  • Increase parent participation and involvement in FMP activities
The responsibilities of the board are to meet with the FMP flight chief and activity managers at least quarterly, as well as to meet with the 341st Mission Support Group commander at least annually.  For more information, the next meeting date or minutes from prior meetings, contact the Parent Advisory Board president at 727-2670 or the FCC office at 731-2116.