by Pastor St. John
A desire to remodel the preschool wing has been one of many dream projects. Only recently with the wisdom of the church board and pastoral staff has it become a reality.
We focused on 3 key elements that had to be accomplished with this remodel – Security of our children, a welcoming first impression to parents and a modern design offering our volunteers a state-of-art work environment. One recent visitor to our grand opening asked “What consulting team did you use to get these results?” Truth be told, it was an all in-house collaborative effort and excellent partnership with Woodruff Construction. The facility was done on-time and our preschoolers couldn’t wait to explore their new classrooms.
Security has been a concern nationwide for our youth. We strive to create a balance on how to protect kids in our care and give parents a sense of confidence. Seven security cameras are now in use with audio and video recording capabilities. Parents can easily check on their kids from the monitor in their new lounge. Front desk volunteers can also view the classrooms on a second monitor. A roll down security window and an electronic door buzzer have been added to control access to classrooms.
To create a great first impression a new Parent’s Lounge was added as a gathering space for adults and kids to comfortably wait until their classrooms were ready to accept kids. It includes a food and beverage bar, live streaming of the main service and comfortable seating areas.
Technology was another component added to this project. A new tracking software program is now underway that can rapidly check kids and volunteers into our care. It is rich with many features that include texting/emailing directly to parents/volunteers on a one-on-one basis, or across the board. Parents can check their kids in ahead of time (i.e. from home, in their car, etc.) with the KidCheck app and when they arrive at the check-in counter their security labels will automatically print for them. Another key feature of this sophisticated program is the ability for our directors to quickly move all check-in records to their phone. If we ever had to evacuate for an emergency situation like a fire we can immediately see what kids are in our care, take a headcount and even check kids out to their parents from a remote location.
With change can come challenges but our parents and volunteers have been very flexible with everything and Pastors St. John and Ronda are so thankful to them. We are now setting our sights on how to make it easy for guest to know where to go to get their kids checked in. Signage, foot traffic and parking are currently being evaluated.
Parkway values kids’ ministry and it shows.
To read the full newsletter this article appeared in, go to www.parkwaycc.com/newsletter, July 2018, Vol. 2, Issue 7.