ELLICOTT CITY, MD (WJZ) — Howard County Executive Calvin Ball announced funding allocated from the CARES Act to subsidize the new RecZone program from the Department of Recreation and Parks. 

The funding allows for a 30 percent reduction of weekly costs. Starting Thursday, RecZone will be offered at $219 per week for an extended day, 7 a.m. to 6 p.m., and $185 for school day options, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., through December 31.

Parents who have already registered for RecZone from September 8 to December 31, 2020 will get a credit to their Recreation & Parks account for the difference in price.

“This global pandemic is testing all facets of our systems and childcare is no exception – without a reliable, safe place for parents and guardians to send children each day, it is going to be a serious emotional and physical toll on families,” said Ball. “On top of these challenges, there are still many residents who are facing tough financial situations – job loss, overdue bills, rent or mortgage payments, and are just trying to get by. As I’ve said before, we’re seeing a domino effect of challenges, and we’re working to provide support wherever possible,”

RecZone is for families who need help with childcare needs during the COVID-19 pandemic. It is open to students grades K-5 who will get support for virtual learning and can enjoy crafts, learning activities, cultural theme days, outdoor play and more.

The program, licensed through the Maryland State Department of Education’s Office of Childcare, will start on September 8 at select schools throughout Howard County, offered five days a week.

Both in-county and out-of-county families can register, but due to COVID-19 restrictions space is limited.

“We are grateful to receive funding from the CARES Act. This reduces childcare costs for families as they return to the workplace,” said Recreation & Parks Director Raul Delerme. “Our Department’s goal is to provide safe, beneficial, and accessible programs in schools and are happy to do so during this unprecedented time.”

Each group will hold a maximum of 15 people, including two staff and thirteen children. They will have two groups at each location to start.

Howard County Public School System is currently working with HCRP to solidify the following program locations:

  • Bellows Spring Elementary School, 8125 Old Stockbridge Road, Ellicott City
  • Bollman Bridge Elementary School, 8200 Savage-Guilford Road, Savage
  • Bushy Park Elementary School, 14601 Carrs Mill Road, Glenwood
  • Clarksville Middle School, 6535 South Trotter Road, Clarksville
  • Dayton Oaks Elementary School, 4691 Ten Oaks Road, Dayton
  • Deep Run Elementary School, 6925 Old Waterloo Road, Elkridge
  • Elkridge Elementary School, 7075 Montgomery Road, Elkridge
  • Forest Ridge Elementary School, 9550 Gorman Road, Laurel
  • Fulton Elementary School, 11600 Scaggsville Road, Fulton
  • Hanover Hills Elementary School, 7030 Banbury Drive, Hanover
  • Hollifield Station Elementary School, 8701 Stonehouse Drive, Ellicott City
  • Ilchester Elementary School, 4981 Ilchester Road, Ellicott City
  • Laurel Woods Elementary School, 9250 North Laurel Road, Laurel
  • Manor Woods Elementary School, 11575 Frederick Road, Ellicott City
  • Veterans Elementary School, 4355 Montgomery Road, Ellicott City
  • Waverly Elementary School, 10220 Wetherburn Road, Ellicott City

For information on how to register or for details on HCRP’s COVID-19 guidelines, you can visit https://www.howardcountymd.gov/childcare or call 410-313-7275

CBS Baltimore Staff

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