Bemidji News | Local Government

Beltrami County Board to hear update on childcare

County Board

The Beltrami County Board of Commissioners will hear a presentation from Greater Bemidji’s Child Care Initiative during their work session Tuesday.

There are currently 79 active in-home child care licenses in the county, providing 948 slots for young children, as well as 9 child care centers, with 574 slots.

Nearly 900 slots are still needed, which is about 37 percent more than what’s available.

Greater Bemidji is currently working on special family child care licensing, with expansion and start-up opportunities and a forgivable loan program through a DEED grant.

This and other efforts are not projected to meet the overall need.

A Spanish immersion daycare center is currently working on a potential expansion to Bemidji.

Tierra Encantada considered Bemidji as a potential expansion location in 2019, but without a site selected and then COVID-19, the move hasn’t materialized.

The presentation included in the county’s packet points out some empty space, the former site of Aurora Waasakone Community of Learners in the Community Services Building.