Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Why is the Center named Orfalea?
  2. Is the Child Development Center open to the general public?
  3. What are the Center’s adult to child ratios?
  4. Who works at the Child Development Center?
  5. Does my child need to be toilet trained in order to attend the Center?
  6. How is discipline handled?
  7. How can I arrange a tour of the Center?

1. Why is the Center named Orfalea?

Our program is named “Orfalea Child Development Center” in honor of Paul Orfalea, the founder of Kinko’s, who made a very generous financial endowment to the Center. We continue to receive support from the Orfalea Family Foundation and network with other programs endowed by the foundation.

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2. Is the Child Development Center open to the general public?

Yes. Ventura College students have priority for enrollment, but children of faculty and staff and community members are welcome as space allows. At any given time, about 25% of the children enrolled at the Center are from community families.

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3. What are the Center’s adult to child ratios?

In our 2-year-old classrooms, an adult to child ratio of 1:6 is maintained. The maximum group size may be 12 or 18, depending on the classroom.

In our traditional classrooms for 3's , 4's and young 5's, an adult to child ratio of 1:10 with a maximum group size of 20 is maintained.

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4. Who works at the Child Development Center?

The Center is staffed with both permanent college staff and student instructional aides. The permanent staff members serve as lead teachers in the early childhood classrooms and hold Child Development Center Permits issued by the California Department of Education. Ventura College students who have completed some coursework in child development serve as instructional aides in our classrooms. Both permanent staff and student aides must pass background checks conducted by the California Department of Justice and the Federal Bureau of Investigation before working in our Center.

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5. Does my child need to be toilet trained in order to attend the Center?

No. Toileting assistance is available in both our Sea Dragons (ages 2 - young 3) and Catfish (ages 3 - young 4) classrooms.

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6. How is discipline handled?

A wide variety of discipline and guidance strategies are used depending on the behavior that's happening, the age of the child, whether someone is being hurt and how long the behavior has been going on. The most commonly used technique is redirection; young children most often act out when they are bored or frustrated so when necessary, staff members redirect children to an activity that will better meet their needs. Staff also help children learn to express their feelings verbally so that they can resolve conflicts with others. Providing a good adult to child ratio allows Center staff to maintain visual supervision of children and prevent many situations from becoming problems. For toddlers, providing multiples of the same item is especially important, as it minimizes the need to wait for turns. Open communication between Center staff and families helps us work together as a team to best meet each child’s individual needs.

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7. How can I arrange a tour of the Center?

Call 289-6030 or e-mail rdouglas@vcccd.edu to make an appointment with the director, Robin Douglas.

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