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Early Learning Center of First Baptist Church

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First Baptist Church
Early Learning Center


The First Baptist Church Early Learning Center is a ministry of our church. For almost 60 years, our early education program has served families in Martinsville and Henry County with affordable and loving childcare and education for children ages 6 weeks to 5 years, along with before- and after-school care and summer care.

Our primary mission is to offer parents an affordable, safe, and secure Christian environment to learn and grow. We currently have over 70 children enrolled in our program.

Mission Statement

In conjunction with the mission of First Baptist Church, the Early Learning Center faculty and staff offer children and parents an affordable, safe, and secure environment in a Christian setting, with age-appropriate curriculum.

We are a member of the Virginia Quality program, which provides training and support for participating childcare centers. Our program has spacious, newly- renovated rooms, a caring church to support the ministry, a spectacular children’s library and computer lab, and age-appropriate curriculum through Smart Beginnings. Our teachers are well-trained and provide caring instruction. Our children also attend science workshops at the next-door Virginia Museum of Natural History, and once a week, the librarian from the Blue Ridge Regional Library enhances literacy through interactive reading experiences.

Keep up with FBC ELC!

Latest News

BGAV Music & Arts Camp 2024

BGAV Music & Arts Camp 2024

Summer Camp Opportunity: Music and Worship Arts Camp! The camp will be held from July 15-19, 2024 at Eagle Eyrie Conference Center.

Our Program

The FBC Early Learning Center is open to any child, regardless of sex, race, religion, or national origin. The Center offers care and education for various age groups, including year-round education, before- and after-school care, and summer care. See below for more information on the program’s available classes.

How Preschool Can Help Your Child

Preschool provides a supportive environment through which your child can…

  • adjust to his or her first separation from home
  • develop a positive attitude toward school
  • develop a positive self-concept
  • learn in the style best suited to his or her age – experimentation, exploration, etc.
  • learn to function as a member of a group as well as an individual
  • learn those concepts which must precede formal instruction in kindergarten


Early Learning & Care

6:30AM to 5:30PM

Before-School Care

After-School Care  3:00-5:30PM

Summer Learning & Care (all day)


  • Nursery – Babies 6 weeks to 14 months
  • Toddlers – Ages 14 months to 24 months
  • 2-Year-Olds – Ages 2 years to 3 years
  • Pre-K 3 – Ages 2.5 to 3 years
  • Pre-K 4 – Ages 3.5 to 5 years


Our Early Learning Center includes spiritual education and technological and literary education as well.

Children’s Chapel

For all children age 2.5 years to 5th grade, one of our pastors holds chapel each week to learn about Scripture and God’s love.


If you would like to enroll your child in our program, you may pre-register online below or pick up an application at the church. Please submit/return the application and a $50 application fee to:

First Baptist Church Early Learning Center
23 Starling Ave.
Martinsville, VA 24112

Applications are accepted year-round for year-round care. Once your application is received, someone will be in contact with you. Please note that spaces do fill up quickly.


When the Center is full, new applicants are placed on a waiting list until a space becomes available. Parents will be notified as spaces open up.

Applications are taken on a first come, first served basis.

For Summer care, applications are received in the Spring.

Tuition Rates & Fees

For current tuition rates and all fees, please see the Parent Handbook.

When a space becomes available and your child is accepted for enrollment, you will need to pay a $150 holding fee by check made payable to FBC ELC.

There is an enrollment packet of papers that need to be filled out and returned, including health forms, which will be provided to you by the FBC ELC Office.

Monthly Tuition is paid by the 5th of each month. Weekly tuition is paid Monday of each week.

You will be notified in advance of any needed raise in tuition.

Facilities and Designation

First Baptist Church Early Learning Center is a religiously-exempt center that follows guidelines put forth by the State of Virginia. Our class sizes are limited in enrollment based on legally-mandated teacher-student ratios for the various age groups.

The facilities include eight classrooms (newly renovated!), an outdoor, enclosed play area with regulation 5-inch foam covering on the floor, an indoor, enclosed play area (newly renovated!), and a kitchen and cafeteria for meals.

Personnel Qualifications

All staff personnel are chosen based on their abilities, attitudes, experience, training, and character. The facility does not discriminate on the basis of sex, religion, age, color, or national origin. Each staff member must have a national criminal background check, which includes fingerprints run through the FBI. All staff are certified in CPR and First Aid.


The Code of Virginia, Section 63.2-1716, allows child day centers operated by religious institutions the opportunity to file for an exemption from licensure by meeting documentation and other requirements specified within the religious exemption law. The statements below have been prepared and distributed to meet the requirements of the religious exemption law.


In compliance with the Code of Virginia, Section 6.2- 1716, this center is religiously exempt from licensure and is classified as a “religiously exempt day center.”


Our staff consists of 9 Lead Teachers and 14 Assistant Teachers. Our Lead Teachers are well-trained in Early Childhood Education, all with 12 or more hours of training, and at least half with Early Childhood Education Certificates or higher. All Assistant Teachers are trained by seasoned Center staff members.

Beth Kotchish


Ivy Beavers

Assistant Director

Jennifer Cassell

Lead Teacher, Infants

Peggy Price

Assistant Teacher, Infants

Janet Malone

Assistant Teacher, Infants

Deborah Gravely

Assistant Teacher, Infants

Tammy Edwards

Lead Teacher, Infant Transition

Sophia Martin

Assistant Teacher, Infant Transition

Abby Martin

Lead Teacher, Toddlers

Jordyn Jarrell

Assistant Teacher, Toddlers

Abigail Harden

Assistant Teacher, Toddlers

Fatima Penn

Assistant Teacher, Toddlers

Jacie Lewis

Lead Teacher, Two-Year-Olds

Serena Frazier

Assistant Teacher, Two-Year-Olds

Kelly Huff

Lead Teacher, Two-Year-Olds

Keirra Hairston

Assistant Teacher, Two-Year-Olds

Danielle Frazier

Lead Teacher, Pre-K 3

Maranda Pelchat

Assistant Teacher, Pre-K 3

Akiha Aiken

Assistant Teacher, Pre-K 3

Jordan Shelton

Lead Teacher, Pre-K 3

Hailey Eames

Assistant Teacher, Pre-K 3

Sharon Harris 

Lead Teacher, Pre-K 4

Kym Tatum

Lead Teacher, Pre-K 4

Barbara Wlodarczyk

Assistant Teacher, Pre-K 4

Karen Compton

Lead Teacher, School Age/After School

Elise Glenn

Assistant Teacher, School Age/After School

Cynthia Dale

Assistant Teacher School Age/After School

Teressa Aiken



Best of Virginia

In 2018 and 2019, our Center was voted the top daycare/preschool of the Southwest region in the Best of Virginia contest of Virginia Living Magazine.

Upcoming Events

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Parent Handbook

View our Parent Handbook

Kesler Children's Library

Learn more about FBC’s library for children

Virtual Tour

Photo gallery tour of our ELC facilities

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*Payments can be made online or through the Brightwheel Parent App. Please note, convenience fees will included in each payment made. (ACH: .50 per transaction & Debit/Credit: 2.75% per transaction)

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Use the form below to send us a message, or call us at 276-632-2636.

Early Learning Center

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