Name Change FAQ
1. Why did TLC change the name?
There are several very long answers to this question. The short answer is: to make sure all families know that we serve typical kids, as well as special needs kids. Longmont and Boulder County are growing every year, and there are SO MANY new families in the area, many of whom have told us or told friends of TLC that their perception of the center is that it's a place "for kids with special needs." Well, that's absolutely true! But we also serve typical kids, gifted kids, awesome kids... ALL kids! (They're all awesome). When families with typical kids skip over considering TLC for childcare or preschool because they don't think we have typical kids in our classrooms, it hurts our ability to fill and open more classrooms, and keep a balanced 6:4 ratio in our existing classrooms (60% kids with typical abilities, 40% kids with special needs, a research-based ratio to serve each kid in our classes with the BEST care and education).
2. Why do people say the name changed because of babies?
Because they're right! We rolled out our new name and our announcement that infant & toddler care was coming at the same time. It is our hope that the new name encompasses our expanded range of services: we now have childcare for children eight weeks old to 2 1/2, whereas before, we only served children 2 1/2-5. Now we have specialized, 4 Star Qualistar rated care for infants and toddlers (and of course, that care is for both typical kiddos AND special needs kiddos).
3. But, I liked the name!
We did too! Did you know the name was originally "Tiny Tim Cerebral Palsy Center," picked by Mrs. Carl Hertha of Berthoud in 1956? She won a $5 prize for her winning name! She came up with the name based on the classic Charles Dickens tale, A Christmas Carol, because of the character Tiny Tim. You know, the small boy who leans on a crutch and has a heart of gold. He's a great character. But he also has the tendency to make people instantly think of a small, sickly child with a disability. Not all people, of course, but some people (mostly those who heard the name The Tiny Tim Center for the first time and weren't familiar with us). There are children at TLC with all kinds of developmental delays and disabilities, and they are strong, awesome kiddos and we are so proud to be part of their early childhood education. But we also serve their typically developing friends, and it's crucial to our long-term sustainability that people (especially all of the new people in town with young families) know that. Not enough kiddos in our classrooms would mean no Tiny Tim/TLC down the road, and that is not good for anyone in the community, especially the kids we want to serve in future years.
4. The name was an institution, how could you change it?
Actually, the name has changed several times throughout the years. We started as the Longmont Cerebral Palsy Center, then changed to the Tiny Tim Cerebral Palsy Center, and then Tiny Tim Center & Sheltered Workshop, and then big leap to the St. Vrain Early Intervention Center, then a big leap back to the Tiny Tim Developmental Preschool, and then we added our full range of pediatric therapy services and became The Tiny Tim Center, followed by The Tiny Tim Learning Center, and then finally TLC Learning Center.
5. I heard you got bought out and/or went corporate, is that true?
Absolutely not. TLC is still a registered 501(c)3 non-profit with a governing Board of Directors (all of whom we love) and no private ownership. Aside from the occasional turnover, our staff is the same, our mission is the same, our facility is the same, and our services are the same (with the addition of infants & toddlers). If you want to learn more about how we operate and what we've been up to, check out our 2013 Annual Report.
6. I heard you don't serve children with special needs anymore. Is that true?
TLC will ALWAYS serve children with special-needs, as well as children from low-income backgrounds. The money from our donors and fundraising events and tuition fees all support children in need of financial assistance for both educational services and therapeutic services, as well as the overhead costs of running a high-quality school and pediatric therapy clinic (our tuition fees do NOT cover our operating costs costs. It is part of our mission to keep our costs as low as possible for families, both full-pay families and scholarship families. Support from the community helps cover the gaps in our operating costs to make this possible).
7. On that final note...
TLC is a non-profit, but we have to survive in the business world, or we can't serve a single child. To survive for another 58 years (and then some), we need kiddos to enroll, we need our fantastic supporters to keep supporting us, and we need our friends to spread the word about what a great job our teachers and therapists do preparing kids for kindergarten and healthy lives. Please, spread the word! And remember us on Colorado Gives Day and attend our fundraising events to help us better fulfill our mission.