ISU closing Early Childhood Education Center until April 3

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TERRE HAUTE, Ind. — Indiana State University announced Saturday its Early Childhood Education Center will be closed from Monday, March 16, through Friday, April 3.

The ECEC often follows local elementary schools regarding closures. The Vigo County School Corporation announced Friday that it is closing at least through April 3. Closing the ECEC is also part of ISU’s effort to prevent spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19).

There are no known cases of COVID-19 at ISU or Vigo County as of 1 p.m. Saturday.

The ECEC, part of the Bayh College of Education, provides weekday care and education for children ranging from 6 weeks to 5 years of age. It is accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children and licensed by the state Family and Social Services Administration. The ECEC provides opportunities for teacher and allied professional training and research, and is available to children of university employees and the community.

“We have to do what’s best for our community by sharing in the burden of preventing the spread of this pandemic,” said Janet Buckenmeyer, Dean of the Bayh College of Education. “We know this causes disruption for hard-working parents, and we hope to get back to providing high-quality early-childhood care as soon as possible.”

As with the rest of the university, the ECEC is receiving extra, and advanced, cleaning measures. That will continue while the facility is closed. Electrostatic disinfectant sprayers ensure thorough cleaning of high-traffic areas and bathrooms. Door knobs, push plate areas on doors, and handrails are receiving increased treatment with disinfectants.

On Thursday, ISU announced that it will move to online-only instruction starting Monday, March 16. A week of spring break begins Monday, March 23. Then there will be two more weeks of online-only instruction.

Campus will remain open and staff members are expected to report to work. Faculty will continue teaching, except for spring break, and students are expected to fulfill their academic responsibilities.

ISU President Deborah Curtis has stressed that the safety of children, students, faculty, and staff is always ISU’s highest priority.

“We understand this situation will create difficulties for many people,” Curtis said. “We’ll work through it together in the Sycamore spirit of cooperation, support, and unity. In what we hope will be a short period of time, everyone will return to ISU and our beautiful campus will have its usual energy.”

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