K-5 Before and After School Childcare: Kids' SAFARI

Registration for Tier 1 families will open at 8 a.m. on Friday, Aug. 21, 2020. If there is availability after our Tier 1 families have registered, registration will open up to the public at 8 a.m. Tuesday, Aug. 25, 2020.   Tier 1 families include children up to age 12.

You will receive a confirmation from our office to let you know your registration is approved. This may take a few days as we need to look at each registration and verify that we have space. We will be reaching out to Tier 1 families to get verification that they are Tier 1 before confirming the registration. The verification can be an ID badge or letter from your employer. 

Sites for childcare are Poplar Bridge and Indian Mounds elementary schools. Sites are subject to change due to number of student registrations received. Childcare hours will run 6:30 a.m. - 6 p.m. 

Transportation will be available for Tier 1 families only utilizing the 8 a.m.- 4 p.m. care. Please email aterpstra@isd271.org to request transportation.  Transportation requests will need at least 3 days to process.

Hours Cost for Tier 1 Families
6:30 - 8 a.m. $12 per day per child
8 a.m.- 4 p.m. No charge
4 - 6 p.m. $12 per day per child


Hours Cost for Families not in Tier 1
6:30 a.m. - 6 p.m. $40 per day per child


A registration fee of $40 for new Kids' SAFARI students and $30 for returning Kids' SAFARI students will be charged for Non-Tier 1 and for Tier 1 before and/or after school. This is a one time fee for the school year.

Program Details

Kids' SAFARI is a before-and after-school childcare program for children in kindergarten through grade 5 (age 12 for Tier 1 families), offering enrichment opportunities designed to meet the changing needs of children and families. The program includes creative learning experiences designed to increase social interaction and lead children to discover friendship, independence and confidence.

Kids' SAFARI is fee-based and available at all Bloomington elementary schools. Kids' SAFARI accepts all students residing in or attending an elementary school in Bloomington.

During the school year, Kids' SAFARI provides programming for students enrolled in kindergarten through grade 5 (age 12 for Tier 1 families). During the summer, Kids' SAFARI provides full-day programming for students entering kindergarten through the completion of grade 5 (age 12 for Tier 1 families).

Kids' SAFARI is administered by Bloomington Community Education's Youth and Family Department.



Information regarding 2020-21 will be posted soon.

Kids' SAFARI is looking for activity assistants and inclusion staff. Get paid to play and join our team.

Apply Now

Kids' SAFARI Summer Childcare program has been changed due to COVID-19 guidelines and restrictions.  Our current program is as follows:

  • $250 per week (regardless of days needed per week)
  • June 15 - August 14 (closed July 3)
  • 7:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
  • Indian Mounds Elementary School
  • The schedule must be completed by families in advance
  • Summer meals available at Indian Mounds Elementary (Breakfast and Lunch)

Students will be in the same group all summer.  Social Distancing will be encouraged.

Summer Childcare Handbook


Preschool Childcare: Early Learners Academy

Early Learners Academy Plan for Distance Learning 2.0 + Supports

We will continue to run the Early Learning Academy during Distance Learning at two locations, where childcare will also be offered. The hours will remain 6:30 a.m. - 6 p.m. and the cost will remain $263/week. Staff will encourage social distancing. Staff and students will wear masks while in the classroom.

  • Indian Mounds Elementary School, 9801 11th Ave. S.
    • Will host students normally scheduled for Hillcrest and Westwood
    •  Capacity: 20 students (10 students/classroom)
  • Poplar Bridge Elementary School, 8401 Palmer Rd.
    • Will host students scheduled for Poplar Bridge and Normandale Hills
    • Capacity: 20 students (10 students/classroom)

NOTE: If the District learning model shifts to Hybrid and Flex, a new plan and registration process will be implemented.

About Early Learners Academy

Early Learners Academy is an all-day early education program for children ages 3-5 that focuses on preparing them for kindergarten. Early Learners Academy is located within four Bloomington elementary schools: Poplar Bridge, Westwood and Normandale Hills Elementary schools and Hillcrest Community School.

Children learn language, early literacy, math, science, social studies, fine arts, health and safety, personal and physical development and technology.  Instructors also use foundational manipulative math experiences and assess student's growth using the Minnesota Department of Education's "Early Childhood Indicators of Progress" state standards.

Each classroom maintains a teacher-student ratio of 1:10. No more than 20 students are admitted into each classroom.

Highly Qualified Staff

All instructors hold a teaching license in elementary education or meet the qualifications required for Licensure by the MN Dept. of Human Services.

High Parent Satisfaction

Each year, ELA conducts a parent satisfaction survey, 10 out of 10 parents say they would recommend the program to others.

We encourage families, who wish to begin an early relationship with Bloomington Public Schools, to explore this opportunity. Early Learners Academy is a 10-month program. Participants have the opportunity to join Early Camp SAFARI during the summer.

Enrollment Requirements

Each student must be three-years-old and toilet trained by Sept. 1.

Elementary School Locations and Hours

ELA is housed within four Bloomington elementary schools. All sites are open from 6:30 a.m. - 6 p.m.

  • Hillcrest Community School: Five-day program
  • Poplar Bridge Elementary School: Five-day program
  • Normandale Hills: Five-day program
  • Westwood Elementary School: Two-, three-, and five-day programs



ELA Online Account Management

Registration for the 2020-21 school year is closed.  Registration is on a first come, first served basis. Once on the registration site, select Explore All Programs, then Early Learners Academy (left side on screen, in blue). Select Registration (middle, in blue), then Create Account.

ELA Registration

Registration fee $60 per child - non-refundable
Five-day program: all locations $263 per week
Three-day program: Monday/Wednesday/Friday at Westwood only $177 per week
Two-day program: Tuesday/Thursday at Westwood only $120 per week


Family Handbook

Have questions regarding Early Learners Academy? Take a look at our FAQS sheet.

Early Learners Academy FAQs