The Westcliff Early Learning Academy broke ground at its inaugural campus Monday, October 9th, 2023 in front of Westcliff University leadership, members of the Greater Irvine Chamber of Commerce, leaders from RAM Construction, and the enthusiastic support of the Westcliff University cheer squad. President and CEO of Westcliff University, Dr. Lee, said, “The groundbreaking of this preschool holds a special place in my heart as a parent of two young children. My goal has always been to provide top-notch and affordable early childhood education for my children and the wider community.”
Westcliff Early Learning Academy, nestled in Irvine’s Westpark community, centrally located from multiple Irvine communities, will provide exceptional early childhood education and childcare services. The preschool will integrate health and wellness while nurturing each child’s innate love for learning. Inspired by, and one of the first schools in California to blend pedagogies such as Reggio Emilia, Montessori, and nature based learning. The academy is an exemplary model for quality early education that embraces hands-on learning to deliver exceptional early childhood education and childcare services from infant through Kindergarten. We honor each child’s natural joy of learning while educating the whole child. Offering dual language programs, we are committed to an immersive experience and ensuring an inclusive community of students, teachers, and families. Adding Westcliff Early Learning Academy to the Westcliff University and Westcliff Preparatory Academy family offers a unique long-term learning opportunity. Ensuring a quality education at many stages of life, including preschool, junior high, high school, and college with undergrad, post graduate and advanced doctoral degrees as well as certificates, fostering a consistent and supportive experience. This milestone marks a step closer to the overarching aspirations of Westcliff to create an opportunity for lifelong learning.
Dr. Lee also spoke of the importance of adding the academy to the community, saying, “There is a huge shortage of child care and early childhood education across the state and the nation. That motivated us to provide this need for the community.” Dr. Lee also spoke of what this addition means specifically to the Westcliff family, “It’s also exciting to be able to give members of the Westcliff community who have a growing family, whether that be staff, faculty, or students, the peace of mind of having a place they can entrust with the care of their children.” Just a short drive from Westcliff’s main campus, the location is ideal for members of Westcliff, and the central location within the City of Irvine makes it convenient for all working and living within or near the City.
The addition of early learning to Westcliff’s educational offerings is one that the City of Irvine has happily embraced. Bryan Starr, President and CEO of the Greater Irvine Chamber of Commerce, said, “Irvine is a city of education. It was planned around providing world-renowned education, which it has successfully done. It is why people want to move here internationally and want to raise a family here. This encompasses every facet of education, including early learning, which is incredibly important. We are proud to have Westcliff as a part of our community, and the Westcliff Early Learning Academy is an amazing opportunity for families in Irvine to be able to get an early start on the path of education.”
Westcliff Early Learning Academy, just as with Westcliff University, has embraced innovations in learning and looks to provide the highest quality and most relevant education possible. The director of this new early learning institute, Monica Heredia, spoke to this, saying, “I’m very passionate about early childhood education. Significantly, 90 percent of brain growth happens before the age of 5, which is why it is so important we focus on these critical years and give children the best opportunity to grow and learn. This being hands-on education with a quality curriculum in a beautiful setting.”
Westcliff Early Learning Academy looks to open its doors in the early part of 2024. Both full-time and part-time enrollment will be available. A brief overview of the programs being offered can be found below, or for more information, visit westcliffearlylearning.com.
If you are interested in enrolling your child, please fill out the priority form below.
Westcliff Early Learning Academy Interest Form.
Westcliff Early Learning Academy is currently seeking part-time and full-time educators; if you are interested, please apply at the links below.
Westcliff Early Learning Academy Careers: Daycare Teacher
Westcliff Early Learning Academy Careers: Assistant Teacher
Westcliff Employees and students will enjoy a substantial 50 percent scholarship on tuition.
Infant Program (12 weeks – 18 months)
Children at Westcliff Early Learning Academy engage in meaningful interactions with caregivers to explore the world using their senses. Specialized infant care teachers form close bonds with the children, nurturing their physical and cognitive development during this crucial period of brain development.
Toddler Program (18 months – 30 months)
Toddlers discover the world through hands-on sensory activities, promoting learning and confidence in a safe environment. Caring teachers establish respectful relationships, encourage idea exploration, and offer daily sensory experiences.
Primary Program (2.5 years – 6 years)
Westcliff Early Learning Academy empowers students to be independent, collaborative, and curious in a tranquil, home-like environment influenced by Montessori, Reggio Emilia, and Nature pedagogies.
Vietnamese Language Option
Introduces young children to dual languages, offering a solid linguistic foundation and promoting cognitive growth and cultural appreciation.
Westcliff’s Parent and Me
This Program provides a supportive environment for infants and toddlers to engage in group activities, sensory exploration, and social, emotional, physical, and cognitive development. Parents and caretakers can actively participate in their child’s growth in this nurturing setting.
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