NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WECT) - More than three dozen school districts across North Carolina have decided to close their classrooms on Wednesday due to a teachers rally in Raleigh, creating an unplanned day off for more than two-thirds of the state's 1.5 million public school students.
School systems in the Cape Fear region are no exception. New Hanover, Brunswick, and Pender county schools all announced last week they will be closed after an excessive number of teachers requested Wednesday off.
As many parents have full-time jobs, several organizations and local businesses are ramping up daycare options to accommodate the influx of additional children.
"We want to make sure that we let our families know that we are there for them no matter what the case is," said Julian Williams with the Brigade Boys and Girls Club. "This was all a surprise to us so we want to make sure the doors are open for the kids to come in for a regular day of school and after school care."
"We wanted to help the parents, we were getting so many calls as they were trying to find childcare, and we are so connected to our community, that we are actually giving 50 percent of our profits Wednesday back to New Hanover County School system," said Amy Atkins Director of Giggle's Drop-in Care.
Below is a list of several places offering extended childcare services, day camps, or opening for the day to accommodate children out of school:
Brigade Boys and Girls Club (New Hanover County):
- For current members only
- Youth Center: 7 a.m. - 6 p.m.
- Teen Center: 12 p.m. - 7 p.m.
- Houston Moore and Hillcrest will be closed.
- Onslow and Pender county sites will be closed.
Giggle's Childcare (Wilmington)
- Offering a daily rate of $65 per child, which includes 8 hours of care and lunch
- 50 percent of sales will go towards area schools, which include: Ogden Elementary, Wrightsville Beach Elementary, Bradley Creek Elementary, College Park Elementary, and Murrayville Elementary.
Jellybean's Skating Rink (Wilmington)
- Drop in Daycare from 7:30 a.m. - 6:00 p.m.
- 1 child: $25
- 2 children: $40
- 3 children: $60
- No registration fee is needed for this day
- Jellybeans will provide 2 snacks and 3 drinks. You may purchase lunch or you may bring your own.
Porter's Neck Play House (New Hanover County)
- Due to the high volume expected on Wednesday, monthly clients will be taken first and “drop-in” services will be on a first come, first served basis.
- If you are not a regular client (who attends 3-5 days per week) please call before arrival to ensure there is space available.
In New Hanover County, many area schools will provide free breakfast and lunch for children 18 years old or younger through the summer food program. Those schools are:
- Mary C. Williams Elementary School
- Bradley Creek Elementary School
- Wrightsboro Elementary School
- Williston Middle School
- D.C. Virgo Preparatory Academy
- Sunset Park Elementary School