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Meridian in the News

Helping kids with behavioral problems

Dec 5

Written by:
Monday, December 5, 2016  RssIcon

From The StarPress

A new partnership in Muncie will make it easier for families and child care providers to get help with children's behavioral issues.

Meridian Health Services' Suzanne Gresham Center and Huffer Child Care Resource & Referral are working together and have designated a few early childhood experts, with the help of Carrie Bale, executive director of BY5 Early Childhood Initiative.

BY5 anonymously surveyed 30 local child care providers earlier this year and found 40 percent have expelled a child from their programs because of behavioral problems.

Nationally, the average expulsion rate for child care providers is 30 percent, Bale said. She took the high number in Delaware County to meant hat local providers need help getting her children extra services.

"Currently many early childhood providers asked families to find another setting if they are unable to meet the child's needs, and so begins the long road of failures for the family and child," she said. "These struggles continue into elementary school and beyond for many children.

"We want to work head on with families and children and early learning providers to strengthen the child's social emotional foundation."

Meridian will have a core staff of three or four early childhood specialties and therapists, Bale said. Huffer will have a staff of eight.

Along with counseling, Meridian and Huff could also offer parent workshops and training for professionals. And the two centers will make sure families are referred to the right place.

Bale said either a parent or child care provider can call to "trigger process" and get extra help. Hopefully by next year the survey will come back with a  much smaller number of expelled students, she said.

If Your Child Needs Services

For information, call any of the following:

Huffer Child Care Resource and Referral, 765-289-0409

Meridian Health Services, 765-288-1928

Muncie BY5, 765-216-7423

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