Center for children, preschool celebrates 25 years


Photo courtesy of Gina Grone
A teacher reads to a child at the AGH Center for Children.

In Deutschtown, at the corner of East North Avenue and East Street, sits an unassuming building without distinguishing features or signage. Most of the thousands of passersby each day are unaware that this building is a local childcare operation that has been open for the past 25 years.

The Allegheny General Hospital Center for Children is a Bright Horizons childcare and preschool that serves community families in addition to hospital employees. There are currently 100 children enrolled in the center’s care, in classrooms for infants, toddlers, preschool, and kindergarten prep. The center holds a National NAEYC accreditation and Pennsylvania Keystone Star 4 credential. The recently renovated building offers Enrichment Spaces that are extensions of the classrooms. These include an Art Studio, Movement Matters Zone, Science Lab, and playgrounds for each age group.

Founded in 1991, the center is celebrating this important 25-year milestone with a birthday party on September 9 from 6:30-8:30 p.m. The birthday party event is open to current and former daycare families and staff, as well as any community members interested to learn more about the center’s work. Attendees can enjoy a music and children’s yoga, face painting and games, and a family service project benefiting a local homeless shelter. Tours will be conducted as well.

Janie Costello, director of the center, has been with the center for 24 years and will be retiring in September. While looking back at the impact the center has made on the Northside, she said “We’ve cared for more than 2,000 children in this building. Many of these children are now adults, living on the Northside, some with kids of their own.”

Gina Grone is a resident of Deutschtown. Her two-year-old daughter has been at the center since she was 3 months old.

“I am so grateful to have the AGH Bright Horizons daycare in my neighborhood. My daughter’s main teacher when she was in the infant room has been working there for 19 years, so I knew that she would be safe and loved,” Grone said. “Now that she can voice her own opinions, she tells me how excited she is to go to school.”

The birthday party will be a great opportunity to recognize the center’s history and impact. Several former staff members will join the current staff to commemorate the milestone. If you or your children have ever attended the center, come to see the space and say hello. If you are a current AGH Bright Horizons parent, come to this party at your child’s home away from home. If you’re curious about the offerings of the center, you are welcome to meet the staff and see the facility. An RSVP is not necessary, but if you have any questions about the event, please call the center at 412-231-0250.

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