Welcome to WNMU’s

Early Childhood Programs


How to enroll your child in the Early Childhood Programs

WNMU has two programs that serve young children and their families: The Child Development Center (CDC), serving 100 children from six weeks to five years of age, and the Growing Tree Infant Toddler Program (GT), accepting 18 children from six weeks to three years of age. Growing Tree primarily serves teen parents at the Opportunity School, Silver High School, and WNMU students. Vacancies in this program are rare. When they occur, they are offered first to employees of Silver High School or the Opportunity School.

Please visit our main facility at 12th St. and Virginia any weekday after 9:00 AM for a personal tour of the Child Development Center and to learn more about our philosophy and services.


Explanation of the Waiting List

Due to the heavy demand for our services, both the CDC and Growing Tree currently have a waiting list for enrollment. To enroll your child, you must complete the following process to be placed on the waiting list. If your need for childcare is immediate, please call (575-538-6841) or visit the La Familia Resource Center in Glaser Hall. Our childcare resource specialists can provide you with a list of other childcare providers in the community and supply you with information about what to look for in a childcare setting.

If you wish to be placed on the waiting list for CDC, you may:

  • Apply by completing the initial information sheet in the enrollment section of this website.
  • Apply in person at Sechler-Rhoades Hall, 12th St. at Virginia.


Applications for enrollment will not be accepted over the phone.


CDC Priorities for Service:

1. Full-time WNMU students

2. Part-time WNMU students

3. WNMU faculty & staff

4. Community members unaffiliated with WNMU.

 In each category, applicants seeking full-time care have priority over those seeking part-time care.

WNMU students must verify their student status each semester to retain their enrollment priority.

Every effort is made to serve the siblings of currently enrolled children.

  • To apply, a family must be pregnant, have a child, or be awaiting an adoptive or foster care placement. Please inform us when a child is born or a placement has been made.
  • No registration fee is due at the time of application to the waiting list.
  • Requests for enrollment are entered into the system by the date of contact, and children are immediately placed on the waiting list.
  • When an opening is available, the administrative team calls the family to let them know of the availability.
  • It is your responsibility to keep all information current, including contact numbers, student status, age of the child, and any special circumstances.
  • We encourage you to call CDC (538-6344) before the end of each semester to update your information and check your status on the waiting list.
  • We annually renew our waiting list each February 1st. If you have not contacted the program prior to February 1st to confirm that you still wish to enroll your child, your child will be removed from the waiting list on that date.


Our enrollment is based on the physical capacity of our classrooms to serve children of different ages. There are fewer slots available for infants and toddlers than for older children because those classrooms have small enrollments. Within the guidelines of our priorities for service, CDC attempts to maintain a balance between fairness to all parents on the waiting list and responsiveness to the extraordinary needs some families experience. For example, developmental concerns or special hardships in the family’s circumstances might warrant special consideration. Five slots are reserved for contracted full-time employees of ECP. The Early Childhood Programs are committed to serving a diverse population of children and families in each of our programs.


Because so many factors may be involved in enrollment decisions, staff members

 are unable to make any predictions

about when you may receive an offer of enrollment.


Rules Governing Part-Time Enrollment

The Child Development Center and Growing Tree Infant/Toddler Program make every effort to accommodate parents’ needs for part-time enrollment of children. Part-time enrollment may be for Tuesdays and Thursdays or for Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. We cannot accept enrollment for one or four days per week or for other combinations of days. Please be aware that younger children may not adjust well to non-consecutive days of enrollment.

Continuation of Services for WNMU Graduates

·         For children, ages 3-5, who have been enrolled prior to their parent’s graduation, continued enrollment after graduation may be available at the community rate.

·         Infants and toddler children may continue in the program only if a parent enrolls in a minimum of 12 credit hours, or 9 graduate credit hours.

An appeal process for graduated students denied continued enrollment is available under certain extenuating circumstances. Parents may pick up an appeal application at the Child Development Center front desk and turn it in for consideration by the Early Childhood Program Coordinators.


Continuing Services for Growing Tree Children

·         Teen parents graduating from high school and continuing on to WNMU may register for continued services during the returning student enrollment period. They receive the same priority as returning WNMU students.

·         Parents of community children attending Growing Tree must come to the Child Development Center office to apply to be on the CDC waiting list.


  • Offers for child care are made only by the center’s manager or designee.
  • An offer may be made, although service may not begin until the child is 6 weeks of age or older.
  • Once an offer is made, a response is generally required within two working days.
  • Families accepting offers will review and must follow tuition and registration procedures.

Refusal of Service

  • If you receive an offer and decline it, you will not receive another offer during that same semester.
  • If an offer is made and declined, the date of refusal is recorded, and the child is placed at the bottom of the waiting list. The date of refusal, not the original application date, will be used to determine your child’s place on the waiting list.
  • After two refusals, a child’s name will be removed from the list. No reapplication to the waiting list will be accepted until the next calendar year.

Once your child is admitted to the program…

  • All children will be treated the same, regardless of race, color, age, national origin, language of preference, or sex.
  • One parent or legal guardian is expected to complete the enrollment information.
  • Once the family accepts placement, they must come in to complete the admissions paperwork.
  • Parents/guardians of each child accepted into the program must provide the following before the child will be allowed to attend the program:
    • Completed admission record
    • Completed consent forms
    • Copy of child’s immunization record/notarized Public Health Department Exemption
    • Class schedule and/or work schedule
    • Non-refundable registration fee
    • Pre-Enrollment Health Statement (due within the first 6 weeks of enrollment)
    • first week 084Signed financial agreement and CYFD paperwork
    • Child Care Food Program application (if applicable)


Once all paperwork is complete and has been submitted, the following sequence of events complete the admission process:

  • Your child will be assigned to a classroom. The classroom teachers then schedule a home visit.
  • Families must attend a program orientation conducted by the administrative team.  Information is shared about the program philosophy.
  • The family counseling team sets up an appointment with the family to develop a family plan.
  • The family and child visit the classroom prior to the first day of school.



The Early Childhood Programs are part of the WNMU College of Education
1000 West College Ave Silver City, NM 88062
Phone: 575-538-6416 Fax: 575-538-6417



Last updated: August 23, 2013