In addition to celebrating its 20th anniversary, FishHawk Early Learning Center is celebrating a perfect 100 percent Readiness Rate score.

FishHawk Early Learning Center (FHELC) is celebrating 20 years of serving children and families of FishHawk Ranch and the surrounding area. The first of its two centers, adjacent to Bevis Elementary at 5632 Osprey Park Pl., has served as a home away from home for thousands of children.

Center Owner Beverly Gonzalez credits its success to her team of well-educated and dedicated staff, many of whom have worked at the centers for more than 10 years.

“Childcare facilities can be known to have high turnover rates, but my staff is dedicated,” she said. “That educational continuity creates a warm, caring environment that is conducive to learning.”

Two of FishHawk Creek Elementary second grade teacher Shannon Brown’s children have attended FHELC.

One daughter, Sawyer, attended FHELC 2, located adjacent to FishHawk Creek Elementary at 6001 Parkset Dr., from the time she was a baby until she graduated from the school’s Voluntary Pre-Kindergarten Education (VPK) program. When she was a baby and refused to take a bottle, she would go over on her teaching breaks and nurse her.

“They supported and even encouraged that bond,” she said.

Another daughter, Quinn, attended the FHELC by Bevis for her first year in the baby room with Ms. Marietta before transferring to the center closer to where she works. Sawyer is now in kindergarten and Quinn is getting ready to transition from the 1-year-old room to the 2-year-old room.

“Handing over your child into someone else’s care is a huge deal for me,” she said. “I gave the teachers and caregivers at FHELC my babies and they have loved and cared for them as I do while preparing them for kindergarten.”

Brown was so pleased with FHELC that she recommended them to her brother.

“He now has two children at the FHELC near Bevis,” she said.

Gonzalez said that, in addition to celebrating its 20th anniversary, it is also celebrating a perfect 100 percent Readiness Rate score, determined by a computer-based state test administered to children who attended a VPK program during the first 30 days of kindergarten.

FHELC is open Monday to Friday from 7 a.m.-6 p.m. It offers options for children from 3 months of age up to fourth grade, including toddler, preschool, VPK and after-school programs.

For more information about FHELC, call 662-5978. For more information about FHELC 2, call 684-5506. The website for both centers is

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Michelle Caceres
MIchelle Caceres has been writing for the Osprey Observer for seventeen years. She enjoys writing human interest pieces about inspiring members of the community who are working to better our community. She lives in FishHawk Ranch with her husband and recently became an empty-nester. When not writing, Michelle is serving her church community, reading and enjoying Florida's weather.