Cynthia White Children’s Center Closes Temporarily

Recently, the Cynthia White Children’s Center (CWCC), the primary daycare center for the children of many faculty members, has battled closures and isolation protocols as the result of positive COVID cases in the school. 

The CWCC, named in honor of the wife of the school’s eighth headmaster, Arthur White, provides daycare for infants, toddlers, and preschool-aged children. Since the beginning of the pandemic in 2020, the CWCC has been adhering to the guidelines set out by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Connecticut Office of Early Childhood (OEC), maintaining high safety standards to protect unvaccinated children under its care. As part of this effort, CWCC limited enrollment this year to families within the school community.

In the past two weeks, multiple children attending the CWCC tested positive for COVID, resulting in required isolation protocols for those affected children as well as other children identified as close contacts. Ms. Athena Colucci, who has been the director of the CWCC since the summer of 2021, explained how the center adapted to interacting with children remotely while they are in quarantine. She said, “The Center has remained open, providing daycare for a very limited number of children these last two weeks. Our staff has been managing outreach to our families providing activity kits, Zoom lessons, and story times for those children currently at home.”

Mrs. Liz Dittmer, whose four children all went to the CWCC and whose three year old son, Freddie, is currently enrolled there, said that the temporary closure posed limited problems for her and her family. She said, “Mr. Dittmer and I were able to mostly teach in the same way [since] we have mostly opposing schedules. When we were overlapping, we alternated on Zoom. The CWCC have done a wonderful job keeping our kids safe, and we are so happy that they are open again and that our kids are able to attend school together again.”

The majority of children at CWCC were able to return to in-person daycare following the long winter weekend.