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Austintown Community Church Preschool Childcare Center celebrates 50 years

April 17, 2019
The Town Crier

Current families, alumni, former staff members and volunteers of Austintown Community Church Preschool Childcare Center are invited to come and help celebrate the end of the 2018/2019 school year as well as the 50th anniversary on Tuesday, May 21, 2019 from 6 to 8 p.m. at 242 S. Canfield-Niles Rd., Austintown (in the back, behind the Church). To celebrate this milestone, the church will have music, a bounce house, memorabilia to view, and more. Cake, ice cream and punch will be served in the church's pavilion. The school/classrooms will be open for walks down memory lane as well.

The preschool first came into operation 50 years ago in September of 1969 with a class of 31 students. Since then, there have only been four directors in the last 50 years. Donna Kuthy was the first director, as well as a teacher, from 1969 to 1977. The director position was then passed on to Bev Miller. Miller, who also began as a teacher, served the preschool childcare center for 21 years from 1977 to 1998. During this time, Miller incorporated the rainbow as the school logo and the song, "Come and Make A Rainbow," as the school's alma mater. Miller also developed and initiated a written curriculum for the children of different ages and developmental needs. Miller also established our children's library to promote family involvement and literacy skills. The third director was Cindy Ellashek. Ellashek also began as a teacher in 1984 and then assumed the position of director in 1998. Over the course of 34 years, 22 as the director, Ellashek has initiated "Chapel Time," which consisted of gathering all the children, on a weekly basis, in the Church's sanctuary to hear stories from the Bible and to learn about Jesus. Ellashek also initiated the annual "Journey to Bethlehem," which is an interactive play put on by volunteers to help the children learn about Jesus' birth. Ellashek also initiated the "Family End of the Year Celebration." This event was introduced to celebrate the students and their families for a successful year of preschool and childcare. The current and fourth director of Austintown Community Church Preschool Childcare Center is Amy Teeters. Teeters has been with the preschool childcare center for approximately 10 years, first as a teacher and now as the Director. Teeters stepped into the director's position in June of 2018 when Ellashek retired. Since becoming Director, Teeters has implemented "Spirit Days," in which the children gather together in the auditorium to celebrate the spirit of Jesus, the spirit of the school, and the spirit of each other. During this time the children sing songs, read stories, play games and complete a service project. The service project is a way for the children to become involved in their community and in their world. These projects have included gathering items for active duty military members who are deployed overseas, making a "Welcome Back," banner for a preschool that was affected by Hurricane Florence, and singing Christmas Carols for the Church staff. Teeters also initiated a Child Greeters program. This program consists of selecting one child, from each classroom, to help the teacher greet the other students each morning. This was brought about to help the children learn social/emotional skills and to learn empathy for one another.

Today, Austintown Community Church Preschool Childcare Center, has a total of 92 registered students including 61 preschoolers and 31 school-aged children. The center consists of four preschool classrooms, one school age classroom (for before and after school care), an activity/sensory room and a Large Motor Room (indoor playground). More detailed information about the preschool and its programs can be found on the Austintown Community Church website at, or on our Facebook Page. For tours of the school, summer registration and registration for the 2019-2020 school year, please contact us at 330-793-1843 or email Teeters at

Article Photos

Photo taken by Snapfoto4u Photography



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