The Coronado Unified School District has leased its Early Childhood Development Center to the Navy to used as a day-care facility for military-connected families. Photo via Google.

The Navy has signed a deal with the Coronado Unified School District to lease a preschool facility that it will use as a day-care center for military-connected families starting in October.

The agreement, signed June 22, opened up the district’s underutilized Early Childhood Development Center to the Navy on Friday. The 18,000-square-foot center features classroom and office space, and 46,000 square feet of outdoor playground and blacktop.

The Navy said there is a great demand to provide child care in the region. Of the more than 2,000 children of military-connected families currently waitlisted for care in San Diego County, more than 500 are children of Navy personnel assigned to installations in Coronado, a Navy official said.

The district’s facility has capacity for 200 children.

“Under this lease, the Navy will operate an otherwise underutilized school to fulfill the child care needs of military families,” Rear Admiral Bette Bolivar, Commander, Navy Region Southwest, said in a press release.

The five-year lease agreement will provide some much-needed revenue for the district, which is dealing with budget reductions as well as unexpected expenses associated with the coronavirus pandemic.

“Finding creative ways to support the Coronado Unified School District budget without sacrificing programs for students is critical,” the district said in a statement. “We believe that the lease agreement is a win-win for both CUSD and the US Navy and is a perfect fit for our supportive tight-knit community.”

It’s not immediate clear how much money the deal will generate for the district. A Navy spokesman declined to provide the financial details of the agreement, and the district could not be reached.

The district said it retains its control of Crown Preschool, located at the center, and will continue to offer preschool services to the community.

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