This semester I have been gathering information regarding the proposal for UWO to buy Lincoln school and possibly use as the new childcare facility. My interest in this project began in a Gender Equity Council meeting. It has been suggested that a new childcare facility in a location such as Lincoln school would provide more space for children slightly off campus; this means that the center would be more convenient for guardians to drop off and pick-up as parking would not be as bad. This also means that the facility can be somewhat to itself, rather than in the center of campus.
After meeting with Sandy Kust of the current Children’s Learning & Care Center, it was clear that there is definite excitement about this possibility. While their current location is workable, the Lincoln school would allow the facility to expand and take in more children. Usually, the current facility receives so many requests for childcare that there is a waiting list for infants and toddlers. This puts strains on guardians, especially students who are also mothers, as other childcare facilities tend to be more costly and inconvenient. Extra space would provide more room for extra children and more jobs for more students; presently, there are 70 student workers at the Children’s Learning & Care Center.
In the meeting with Vice Chancellor Petra Roter, she explained that the proposed land is not zoned for commercial business, but it is zoned for institutional development. This means that the supposed proposal by McDonalds, KFC, and Taco Bell to outbid UWO for the Lincoln school is unlikely. While it is unsure as to what exactly UWO would do with the property (there are proposals for the child care center, health care center, and other academic interests), she ensured me that UWO is doing everything possible to secure the area; as of now, we must all sit and wait.