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The Nest Nursery School Relocating, Expanding to Grant Park

By Heather Corrigan
In August 2016, The Nest Nursery School will relocate to a larger facility in the Grant Park community, allowing the school to grow to serve 64 children and their families. Since opening in August 2011 in a small house on Moreland Avenue in Ormewood Park, the Reggio Emilia-inspired nursery school has evolved from a tiny program of 18 families to a busting-at-the-seams community of 29 families with a long wait list.
“With a continuing annual waitlist, we wanted to be able to offer this type of education to more families, and the new location will allow us to expand and support our interested families. With support from the community, we hope and desire to create a unique play and learning space where our current families and future families’ children can grow and thrive. Our southeastern Atlanta community is built, in large part, on a strong commitment to education, and our schools are a cornerstone in the foundation of who we are as neighbors. The Nest is honored to extend its commitment to high quality, child-centered, community-driven early education to more families, believing their participation is important in supporting the neighborhood tradition of valuing schools,” Kristi Cameron, Nest co-founder, said.
The Nest Nursery School offers a full-day, year-round, high-quality educational experience for children ages 3 months to 4 years. With inspiration from the schools of Reggio Emilia, Italy, The Nest holds the image of the child as a powerful, competent, capable and integral member of the community. The school envisions each family as unique, deserving of respect and the center of the child’s life, as it fosters interpersonal relationships among children and adults.
The Nest will be moving to 1040 Grant Street, two and a half miles away, into the historic neighborhood of Grant Park. The larger space is a blank slate in terms of design possibilities. Construction has already begun at the new location with an anticipated opening date of August 3. The former warehouse is being gutted, re-roofed, and rebuilt from the concrete floor to the very high ceilings. The large greenspace adjacent to the building offers exciting possibilities and will be converted into a creative play scape and outdoor classroom. A group of parents, children, and teachers from The Nest are working together with a landscape design team to create a wide range of experiences that reflect the belief of the school that children have a natural disposition for learning and an innate curiosity that, when intentionally and carefully nurtured, blossoms into a life-long love of learning. Mandy Palmer, school co-founder, said, “children have a right to regular time spent outdoors because outdoor experiences are vital to healthy development. With this in mind, we are engaged in a design process that will result in an outdoor space that is engaging, stimulating, and open with never-ending possibilities.”
With expansion, the hope is that the school’s annual “Nest Fest” benefit can serve to build a scholarship fund, so that income is less of a factor in families’ choices of high-quality child care. The expansion will also assist the school in continuing to maintain a high quality staff and well-balanced organic meals.
The Nest Nursery School is now in the process of enrollment for the 2016-2017 school year. They are also hiring curious, bright adults who have a respect and love for children, are collaborative team players, and are excited at the prospect of being part of the evolution of a school community. To learn more about The Nest, please email us at info@thenestnurseryschool.org, or call (404) 627-1200.
The Nest Nursery School embraces childhood as a magical time. The name of the school reflects the intention to work alongside families to create a special environment for young children feels like a home away from home – an environment built on a respect for childhood and a love of children. The Nest strives every day to do the very best with the huge responsibility to care for a group of the community’s youngest citizen, to teach them well so they may go out into the world with confidence in their own worth and curiosity about life; to lend peace of mind to the community’s families, knowing that their children are cared for, educated, and attended to each day with love and respect; and to participate in and invite participation from the community with the understanding that our lives are lived better together than in isolation from one another.
The Nest Nursery School is asking for donations from current school parents, Grant Park residents, and surrounding communities to build out a new innovative learning location to support the growing community’s need for additional childcare and educational opportunities. Funding from the community is key to creating a new dynamic learning space and establishing The Nest as a new standard of childcare in Grant Park. To learn more or donate, please visit The Nest Nursery School website at www.thenestnurseryschool.org. Please look for more upcoming fundraising events here in The Porch Press.

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