AUSTIN (KXAN) — Del Valle ISD is starting the school year off with a new facility that will help with childcare.

Thinkery and Del Valle ISD are partnering to create a shared facility at Del Valle ISD’s central campus that integrates a new Del Valle Child Development Center (CDC) with Thinkery’s play-based, STEAM-learning approach.

The new building for the Del Valle ISD Child Development Center, is part of the district’s 2019 Bond projects. Last year the services were offered in portables just across from the current location.

Del Valle ISD superintendent Dr. Anette Tielle said the district also wants to open the facility to the community.

“What I wanted to do was open this up to the community for free,” said Tielle. “On weekends and after school time, but we are also offering three and four Pre-K.”

The center is open for children of district students, staff and the community. It is one of three new centers in the district, with the other two open for children of DVISD staff.

Tielle said without resources like this it can be difficult for teen parents to complete high school.

“The program is for our teen parents to have their children here while they continue their education. The only caveat is to have their kids here for free they have to attend a parenting class.”

At a time when funding is scarce for many public schools community partnerships can have a big impact, Tielle said.

“The Thinkery went out and found funders and they are investing $1.6 million into this facility and that is something we could not do without the Thinkery,” Tielle said.