Creative Minds Learning Centers - Happy Valley - Clackamas OR Child Care Center

12771 Southeast Sunnyside Road, Clackamas OR 97015
(503) 855-4512
2 Reviews

About the Provider

Description: Creative Minds Learning Centers (CMLC) was founded by the Mckinster family in 1997 due to an overwhelming demand for high quality preschool programs.

Creative Minds operates seven eco-friendly and certified preschools and child development centers in the Portland, Metropolitan Area. Our schools are proud to offer media-free educational and healthy environments with the children's interests and parent's needs in mind. Creative Minds’ mission is to provide a progressive preschool program that helps foster life-long learning and developmental growth.

Creative Minds Learning Centers have been designed to encourage children to explore their interests in a creative and artistic setting. Certified with the State of Oregon and members of NAEYC, OAEYC, Oregon Environmental Council and other Early Childhood organizations, CMLC schools provide a progressive and positive environment for children, staff and families. Creative Minds has also been recognized as members of QRIS, selected as one of 25 Oregon Program of Quality schools and continues to be a leader in the Early Childhood Education field.

Our philosophy is to enrich children's lives with creative arts and accredited educational materials while developing self esteem, confidence and a sense of independence. While there are many approaches and "labels" for teaching young children, Creative Minds schools focuses on the basis of early childhood development being "trichotomized" into a trio of goals: (1) social/emotional development and (2) intellectual development and (3) the acquisition of meaningful and useful academic skills. Children are capable and willing to learn and naturally can begin to read at Pre-Kindergarten grade. It is our duty to guide the children during the day in a structured setting. The children depend on the security of a daily routine and come to school excited to see their friends and teachers.

Program and Licensing Details

  • Age Range: 3 months to 5 years 11 months
  • Enrolled in Subsidized Child Care Program: No
  • District Office: Oregon Employment Department - Child Care Division
  • District Office Phone: 503-947-1400 (Note: This is not the facility phone number.)

Location Map


Parent Feb 11, 2016
I have used this provider for more than 6 months

They care more about the teacher/child ratios than what's going on with the children.

JP923 May 15, 2015
I have used this provider for more than 6 months

I'll start out by saying that many of the teachers at this school are great, I mean really great. They obviously care about their job and try to make school a fun and educational place for the children. Having a theme each month with a lot of art projects and activities around it is really great. Many teachers go above and beyond, spending their own money to supplement supplies for their class. The school promoted activities like gardening and cooking classes in their curriculum, though we never saw either of those happen. The food provided is healthier than you'll find at most any other daycare center, although it is not quite as 'organic, local and clean' as they lead you to believe. Not a huge deal for us, but it gives the perception of false advertising.

The main issue we had, and the reason we ended up taking our children elsewhere, is the management. These schools share Directors, so there's usually one Assistant Director there (though she can't be there 7-6 every day) but we hardly ever saw the Director. Both of them are nice enough people, but they don't go out of their way to be friendly or welcoming when they see you or your children. Staff turnover was average but the teachers were often stressed out about coverage/ratios and we got the sense the children were shuffled around to different classrooms to meet maximum ratios more than we were comfortable with. The woman that oversees all of the schools didn't seem much better. Maybe it's because two of them don't have children of their own, but they had little sense of what could make their school better for parents and kids. The play area for younger children is a prime example of this - there's not much for them to do, all of the wood gives many slivers and not to mention all of the sharp edges with wobbly toddlers running around. Adding variety and bringing in more guests and activities for the kids would be great as well. They find a reason to close one day a month (whether it's a holiday, in-service day, etc) and then they close from Christmas through New Years, but are happy to charge full tuition price for the month of December. Most months have a special day where parents are invited to join an activity, but it's at 3pm in the afternoon and if you have more than one child there you have to pick which class to attend because they rarely stagger the times. Overall, we felt that it was not a working-parent friendly run business, even though that's who their main customer is.

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