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On eagle’s wings

New preschool in Craig embraces Christian values

Michelle Balleck

— Opening a Christian preschool has been in the back of Pastor Rod Compton’s mind for some time.

“I believe the best way to start kids out right is to get them an early Christian education,” Compton said.

And he knew just the person for the job – Calvary Baptist Church member Angie Roberts, who’d had the same dream.

“I’ve always wanted to have a Christian preschool,” Roberts said. “I’ve always felt that in my heart.”

So, the two teamed up and are getting Eagle’s Nest Preschool off the ground this fall. The name comes from a Bible verse: “They shall mount up with wings like eagles.”

Roberts will direct the preschool, which will have five teachers including her. She has an associate degree in early childhood education and is a certified director.

Roberts also has 14 years teaching experience – four years at St. Mark’s Preschool and 10 at Moffat County School District’s Early Childhood Center.

She said Rosemary Crosthwaite and Sarah Hepworth, who lead those schools, respectively, taught her much of what she brings to the new preschool.

“They’re both successful preschools because of great leadership,” Roberts said. “And they have given that to me.”

The preschool will serve children ages 3 to 5 in morning and afternoon sessions. Classes begin Sept. 4 and will run through the end of May.

The preschool has a capacity of 26 students in the morning and 26 in the afternoon. Thus far, 20 students have enrolled, Roberts said.

“It is filling up already,” she said.

Compton said that’s evidence of the necessity for an additional preschool in Craig, as many carry hefty waiting lists.

“There’s a huge need for preschool in this town,” he said. “As it grows, we want to grow with it and maybe be a little bit ahead of it.”

Roberts said encouraging Christian values through prayer, songs and Bible stories is an important mission of the preschool. It will not center one denomination, however.

“As a church, children are important to us,” Roberts said. “We feel if you can reach them when they are young, we can instill that in them. It’s important to reach them when they’re little.”

It’s a sentiment shared by others, Roberts said. The preschool has received various donations from within the congregation, other churches and local businesses.

“It’s just been awesome to see the community have an interest and a love for children, too,” Roberts said.

Compton said that support is encouraging, especially as the church aims to construct a new facility behind the church on North Yampa Avenue and perhaps grow to a pre K-12 school someday.

But for now, Compton said he and Roberts are focusing on the students enrolled and having a successful first year.

“We want them to know, first of all, is that they’re loved – not only by our teachers, but by the Lord,” Compton said. “We also want them to get a quality education so when they enter kindergarten, they’re ready.

“This also gives us an opportunity to touch some families we don’t usually have the opportunity to touch.”

For more information on Eagle’s Nest Preschool or how to enroll children, call 824-2552.

Michelle Perry can be reached at 824-7031, ext. 213, or mperry@craigdailypress.com.


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