Affordable Tampa Bay area afterschool childcare options

Posted at 5:34 PM, Jul 22, 2016

ABC Action News is committed to helping busy working parents find affordable afterschool childcare options for the school year.

Hillsborough County:

Tampa Metropolitan Area YMCArepresents afterschool programs at 30+ sites in Hillsborough County.

The Tampa YMCA recently created an enhanced afterschool curriculum, allowing kids not only to play afterschool in a safe environment, but get help with college readiness, homework, interactive activities and more.

We don't want kids to feel like they are still in school but we want to give them a lot of enrichment activities to build on what they learned during the day," said Candace Culver, VP of Youth Development for the Tampa Metropolitan Area YMCA.

The cost is around $200 a month, but there are scholarships available for families who qualify.

Enroll here.

Hillsborough County Schools:

HOST accepts School Readiness Child Care Certificates and are primarily staffed by a combination of district certified teachers, college students, as well as local high school On the Job Training (OJT) students and retired personnel.

All staff members are screened, processed and fingerprinted through the school district’s human resources department. All students are carefully supervised and are only released to authorized persons indicated on the registration form.

After school programs are affordable programs that are held during before and after school at 148 elementary and middle schools with 12,218 enrolled. Both programs offer supervision and a variety of enrichment activities for children, kindergarten through 8th grade and a daily snack is provided.

"Parents would love to be with their children if they could and working hours prohibit that," said Debbie Zenk, supervisor of HOST Programs. "They need to have safety as a priority to know that they are loved and safe when they can't be with them."

Each program plans daily activities such as homework assistance, academic enrichment, art, crafts, and games, outside games and field trips. Program fees are approved by the school district.

Enroll Here

Pinellas County:

The City of St. Petersburg Parks and Recreation offers free after school programs for all middle school students in grades 6 through 8 at 11 locations.

Participants are supervised by well-trained, on-site staff, city representatives said.

Activities include sport leagues, games, special events, daily snack, homework assistance and tutoring. Full day activities available when Pinellas County Schools are not in session.

"Essentially, they should have their homework done before they get home, because they'll meet with the teachers and the teachers will assist them," said Andy Chee, city of St. Pete's Recreation Supervisor.

Before school programs also offered - free for qualified students. For those who pay, it can be as low as $55/month. Transportation to and from select schools provided. 

More information about more great quality programs at 727-893-7441 or

Pasco County School District:

Pasco Learning and Activity Centers of Enrichment (PLACE) is a school-age before and after school activity program operated by the District School Board of Pasco County. PLACE is designed to provide an active and enriching environment for children who must arrive at school early, stay late and/or require supervised activities on most school holidays. Participation is limited to elementary school children, in kindergarten through grade five.

The school cafeteria and outside play areas are utilized for PLACE activities. Supervision is provided by school board staff at a ratio of one adult to 25 children. The number of children enrolled at each site is determined by the spacial limitations and number of staff employed.

Enrollment Criteria

A child may be enrolled in the PLACE program if he/she is:

Able to be independent in daily self care needs, such as toileting, feeding, dressing self.
No danger to self or others.
Able to participate in large group activities with an adult/child ratio of 1 adult to 25 children.
Able to remain within program location and under adult supervision without running away.

Get information here.

YMCA Suncoast

The Suncoast YMCA represents Pinellas, Pasco, Citrus and Hernando counties.

The Y offers afterschool programs that serve thousands of children in Hillsborough County. Afterschool programs at the Y focus on nurturing a child’s development by providing a safe and healthy place to learn foundational skills, develop healthy, trusting relationships and build self-reliance through the Y values of caring, honesty, respect and responsibility. Available for children in grades K-5.

Get information here.