KATY MAGAZINE NEWS
August 3, 2022
By Natalie Cook Clark
Katy’s Early Childhood Enrichment Center celebrated 20 years of teaching Katy kids this week. They celebrated with a party and cake.
Photo credit: Katy's ECEC
Katy's Early Childhood Enrichment Center Opened 20 Years Ago
20 years ago yesterday Katy’s Early Childhood Enrichment Center opened their doors. Since then thousands of Katy kids have gone through their highly accredited program and many have even returned to become teachers or are now walking the halls as parents to current Katy ECEC students.
A Lifelong Educator
“I think what makes our school most special is that we Pride ourselves in the tenure of our teaching staff,” says owner and founder Nicole Istre.
Istre grew up in Katy and graduated from Katy High School in 1989. She and her husband have a combined family of six children, three grandchildren, and another on the way. She has always loved childcare and began her career early at age 15.
Katy ECEC celebrates their 20th Anniversary!
“I’m an owner who is involved in the business on a daily basis. I absolutely love what I do,” says Istre.
Istre is a devoted early childhood educator who has worked as a classroom teacher, a preschool director, and a district manager for a large chain childcare center. She is also a preschool and childcare consultant and has helped launch other private centers including The Learning Center at Living Word Lutheran Church, Grace Fellowship Preschool, and St. Bartholomew Preschool.
“I grew up knowing that I wanted to own my own school,” says Istre. “In the beginning, my school was a Collaborative between Houston Community College and Katy Mills. We were also partners with the Katy school district. We did a pilot program our opening year with an inclusion program with the district. That program ran for 16 years and is probably one of my most rewarding experience.”
Istre says that she and the staff often get high school and college graduation announcements from former students and they love it. She says that Katy is a big family and that staying in touch with so many students is easy. “The most rewarding is watching children with special needs grow and develop throughout program,” says Istre.
She also loves her teachers and enjoys helping them grow.
“When I tell people what I do, they always comment and say, ‘oh you love to work with children!’ And I respond by saying, ‘I do! But my other passion is helping the teachers grow in this profession.’”
Katy’s ECEC is also one of two Katy preschools accredited through the National Association for the education of Young children (NAEYC.)
Learn more about their program, fall enrollment, and back-to-school event happening next month at their website.