Community Partners

Jumpstart is a program that provides language, literacy, and social-emotional skills for preschool children in the community. Jumpstart promotes reading times, small groups, and individual activities for 3-5 year-olds in local preschools. Jumpstart focuses on getting children ready for success in kindergarten.

Through the support of the Heart of Missouri United Way, care at MLJCLC is able to be offered through a sliding fee scale making quality early childhood care and educational programing accessible to everyone.

The University of Missouri’s Colleges of Education, Nursing, Family and Community Medicine, Food Service, Nutrition and Exercise, and Health Services participate with MLJCLC, providing student practicum experience and increasing the overall services MLJCLC is able to provide.

College students within this program are able to provide assistance within the classrooms creating additional adult positive interactions for the children and assistance for the teaching staff to focus on individual child’s needs.

MLJCLC benefits from participation with The Food Bank to supplement food expenses for the meals and snack provided daily for the children. The reduction in overall expenses allows MLJCLC to focus food costs on purchase of high nutrition choices which often come at higher expense. 

The C.A.R.E. Program’s partnership with MLJCLC provides opportunity for youth of Columbia to work 20 hours a week during summer school recess and experience the field of early childhood education. This program allows youth to experience work ethic, communication skills, and team work in a real world work environment Participants in the past have gone on to pursue higher education training in the field of early childhood education after their experience at MLJCLC through the C.A.R.E. Program

MLJCLC has participated in CACFP for many years. MLJCLC receives reimbursement for children qualifying under the free and reduced meal program. A subset within the USDA Food Program is the Eat Smart Program which is a new tiered recognition program under the USDA Food Program. Over the past year with, one on one instruction and oversight, adjustments to the menu and purchasing, changes to nutrition policies, and four hours of required staff training, MLJCLC has recently submitted the paperwork to become the very first childcare facility in central Missouri to qualify at the Advanced Level as a recognized Eat Smart Center. This level is achieved by serving a high variety and quality of nutritionally sound foods with a high amount of fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grain products, and very little processed or sweet foods.

The mission of Boone County Community Services is to support the greatest possible level of independence and self-sufficiency of Boone County residents by promoting their physical, mental and social well being to cultivate a safe and healthy community. We partner with BCCS to assist in providing healthy choices for children, nutrition education in our classrooms and health and wellness education for our families and our community. 

© 2017 by Mary Lee Johnston Community Learning Center

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