Now that school has started, we expect there to be positive COVID-19 cases among our students and staff. Even if students or staff test negative, they may be quarantined for a certain period of time due to exposure. Our COVID-19 Response Plan For Fall news article has been updated with a link to ACTIVE POSITIVE cases by building as we are notified by parents, staff, and/or the health department. Please DO NOT panic if your child comes home with packets of work, as many staff members are creating such work just in case.

    As previously noted in our COVID-19 Response Plan For Fall, there is the potential for building or district closure due to staffing shortages or a large percentage of students testing positive for COVID-19. Likewise, transportation plans could be altered or delayed due to driver shortages. Please be sure your family has contingency plans should a building or the district have to close due to staffing shortages or outbreaks. 


    Please remember, a staff member or student out of school does not necessarily mean their absence reflects a positive case of COVID-19. Thank you for your continued patience and understanding.  

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Principal's Message

Beth Abbott
Student Services Coordinator


Dear Preschool Families and Friends,


Welcome to Whittier Early Childhood Center where our mission is, “To nurture the development of early learning through play and social interaction, preparing our preschoolers for kindergarten success.”


Our staff understands the importance of its role in guiding and teaching our young students at the beginning of a life-long journey of learning. We look forward to developing academic, social, emotional and motor skills to prepare your children for the educational opportunities of kindergarten and beyond.


Being a part of the creating Sidney City Schools’ preschool has been challenging and exciting. This is my 23rd year in education, all at SCS. I have been the principal at Whittier for 11 years. Before becoming principal I was a 6th-grade reading and writing teacher and Sidney Middle School and a 5th-grade reading, writing and science teacher at Northwood. Education is my second career. I previously worked at The Lima News, first as a reporter, then copy editor and ended my career there as city editor overseeing all local news and a reporting staff of 10 writers. I earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Journalism from The Ohio State University; a Master of Education degree from The Ohio State University; and a Specialist in Education degree from Bowling Green State University with a focus on educational leadership. My wife Pam and I have two grown children, Katie and Graham, and a daughter-in-law, Kendal.


I believe a partnership with our families is key to our students’ success. I look forward to meeting and talking to parents and grandparents on how we can best support the learning needs of our students, your children.


If you have questions or comments about our preschool please feel free to contact me or just stop by my office. I am looking forward to meeting and getting to know our Whittier families and friends.


Keith Helmlinger
Whittier Early Childhood Center


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