Porter-Leath set to open new Early Childhood Academy

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - A brand new Porter-Leath Early Childhood Academy will soon open its doors to families in Shelby County.

With tiny tables, sinks, and miniature chairs, the state-of-the-art facility is one of a kind. 

"Really it's the nicest early childhood facility in the country," Porter-Leath Development Director Rob Hughes said.

It also uniquely houses a Teacher Excellence Program. 

In partnership with Shelby County Schools, the Teacher Excellence Program utilizes instructional coaches to provide professional development opportunities for early childhood educators.
WMC Action News 5 got a look inside the center crafted by national specialists RDG Planning and Design, the 16-classroom, 32,000-square-foot facility has a forest feel with natural light, lush landscapes, and bright colors. 

Even the hallways are extensions of the learning areas. 

"When our children interact, whenever they're in the hallways, there's all sorts of fun things like this for children to interact with as they go through," Hughes said.

The facility will serve 224 students and their families.

"All of our students will receive a U.S.D.A. approved lunch snack and breakfast," Hughes said.

Security and observation cameras are in each classroom.

A playground wraps around the center.

For added security there is an alert that beeps to let teachers know when a child opens the gate.

The grand opening celebration and ribbon cutting, for the academy located in South Memphis off Alice Avenue, will be Friday. 

"This was all privately funded, the building was, and our operating dollars all come from federal funding and match dollars from the private sector," Hughes said.

The academy will officially open its doors to students in late February.

Copyright 2017 WMC Action News 5. All rights reserved.