small child painting

Child Development Centers

We are recruiting children of Pierce College students for our on-campus Early Head Start and Head Start programs. These programs serve children ages 12 months to 5 years. Our dedicated staff offer high-quality learning environments, family support services and more, all while following strict COVID-19 safety measures.

The Milgard Child Development Center at Pierce College Fort Steilacoom and the Garnero Child Development Center at Pierce College Puyallup bring compassionate, thoughtful, research-based care and education to children ages 1 to 5.

Our core beliefs:

  • Children have enormous potential and capability.
  • We must give children the same trust, patience, dignity, and respect we would offer anyone embarking on a serious educational journey.
  • We can best guide children by listening to them.
  • We are in partnership with parents and the community.

The centers utilize teaching methods that encourage discovery, curiosity, relationships and social interaction. Our teachers set the environment and guide children through learning and exploration, while partnering with parents and the community. Parent participation is crucial to all areas of the program.

In addition, our buildings and landscapes are themselves laboratories, where children can explore and experiment. The light and space encourage inspiration, discovery and partnership.

The Pierce College Child Development Centers provide:

  • Caring, dedicated and degreed teachers
  • Observation and documentation of each child's growth and development
  • An Emergent Curriculum, which relies on teacher observation, flexibility, patience and creativity
  • Full-day Head Start
  • Flexible scheduling for Pierce students
  • Low teacher-student ratios
  • USDA meal program
  • State subsidies accepted

Milgard Child Development Center and Garnero Child Development Center also offers a full-day Head Start program for qualifying children aged 3 to 5 years old. Please contact us for further information.


Milgard Child Development Center

Pierce College Fort Steilacoom
9401 Farwest Drive SW
Lakewood, WA 98498
(253) 912-3680

Hours: M–F: 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Garnero Child Development Center

Pierce College Puyallup
1601 39th Ave. SE
Puyallup, WA 98374
(253) 864-3302

Hours: M–F: 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.