A need for childcare options in the area prompted Renee and Tyler Robertson to open Geneseo Child Care.
Renee Robertson said after she and her husband grew their family to four children, the decision was made for her to stay home and devote more time to the children…”There was a flood of friends and others who asked if I would watch their children. The amount of people who were in need and were searching for a solution for their family seemed problematic.” Robertson did help friends with some part time childcare, but said people would still ask her if she knew of any openings for childcare of if she would consider watching more children in her home.
She has a degree in Early Childhood Teaching from Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, and worked in childcare during her college years before becoming a preschool/kindergarten teacher first in Farmington, Minn., where the couple had moved for work and where they started their own family.
“Tyler and I are both graduates of Geneseo High School and we always knew we wanted to move closer to home,” she said. “Once the time was right, we moved back home to be closer to family and grow our children in the same great community and school district we knew and loved.”
When the Robertson family did return to Geneseo, she taught first grade in the Geneseo School District until the decision was made for her to be a stay-at-home mom. Before opening Geneseo Child Care, Robertson said she had considered returning to work and had put the couple’s children on a waiting list for daycare…”It was a long list,” she said.
The couple has four children – Shae, 7; Harper, 5; Ryder, 3, ad Reed, 1. “Our hearts were always in the right place to open the business because we both grew up in the community and so we were committed to giving back to it and investing in it,” she said. “Tyler said ‘let’s do it and open our own center,’ so we more formally analyzed the business idea with numbers. When the numbers made sense, we took the next steps to open the business.”
The biggest hurdle the couple had to overcome in opening Geneseo Child Care was the different types of state daycare center licensing required…”The process from start to finish is very difficult,” Robertson said.
She said, “We originally chose the location because of the great set up of the building. (The building is the former Howard Grade School) It is the perfect size with a small gym and has bathrooms in each classroom.” After the couple began preparing the building as a child care center, they also became aware of how perfect the location is for anyone commuting to the Quad Cities with easy access to U.S. Route 6, Wolf Road and Interstate 80, Robertson said.
Tyler Robertson has a degree in business from the University of Illinois, Champaign, and has done most all of the “behind the scenes” set up of the business,” his wife said. She is director of the Center and works directly with children and staff on a daily basis. Geneseo Child Care offers care for children ages six weeks through 12 years. The Center has five classrooms with different ratios per age group: - Infant Room – ratio 1:4; Toddler Room – ratio 1:5; Two and Three Year Old Room – ratio 1:8; Preschool Room – ratio 1:10; School Age Room – 1:20. The Center also offers after-school care for children ages 5-12 and transportation is provided by Pinks Bus Service. Geneseo Child Care is open year round with a summer program for school age children.
ABOUT GENESEO CHILD CARE
ADDRESS: 20965 East 900th St., Geneseo.
HOURS: 7 A.M. TO 6 P.M. – Monday through Friday.