MONTCLAIR, NJ - A group of Montclair preschool center directors received a proclamation proclaiming "Week of the Young Child April 24 -28, 2017." 

On Tuesday, April 25, 2017 early pre-school programs and providers from several Montclair programs, gathered at the Montclair Township Municipal building  to receive a proclamation recognizing "Week of the young child."  Recognized by NAEYC (National Association for the Education of Young Children), April 24-28, 2017 is a week long recognition of children, teachers, families and organizations that work in the field of pre-school education for children ages 0-5.

The proclamation request was spearheaded by Avissa Beek Peniston, Executive Director of the Neighborhood Child Care Center located at 30 Maple Ave.  Peniston spoke as a member of a group, known as the Montclair Director's Group, which is comprised of early childhood and head start professionals who aspire to work collaboratively together as a network of educators focusing on the needs of children and their families.

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Fourth Ward Councilor Renee Baskerville and Third Ward Councilor Sean Spiller presented and read the proclamation proclaiming 'Week of the Young Child' before the town council.

Educators representing the various programs in Montclair forming the Montclair Directors Group include:

Sandy Schultz - St.James Pre-school,
Lynn Kulik - Park Street Academy,
Avissa Beek - Peniston Neighborhood childcare center,
Joan Quartro - United Way,
Tanya Poteet  - Montclair Head Start ,
Roselyn Terry - Montclair Head Start ,
Carolyn Divito - Montclair Pre-K,
Cindy Pillsbury Benson - Pillsbury School.

Peniston commented by saying, "We celebrate our children all year long but as the seasons change so do the activities. We know parents are busy and this is a week designed to celebrate children, their families and the teachers that work daily with children left in our care." She added, "So we ask for parents to participate and take time from their schedule. "

NAEYC has suggested activities for programs, however, it leaves it up to the individual programs to be creative, innovative, but most importantly fun and hands on . 

Activities at the Neighborhood Childcare center included:

Monday -April 24 ,2017  Parent Grab and go Breakfast  &  The power of creative  Music 

Tuesday -April 25,  2017 - International food day learning of other cultures through food

Wednesday - April 26, 2017- supporting children in creative art 

Thursday -  April 27, 2017  - Story time and sharing family traditions

Friday -  April 28, 2017 -Purple T-Shirt Day and Ice cream social 

In writing the proclamation and presenting it, the Township of Montclair recognizes the work that is done in educating and preparing children to enter school districts in Montclair and the surrounding areas and equipping them for kindergarten.

For information pertaining to the Directors Group contact Avissa -Beek Peniston at (973) 744-4228 


For information for National Association for the Education of Young Children go to