(Blooming Prarie, MN) — Sept. 12, 2022 — The Leo Augusta Children’s Academy of Blooming Prairie will provide a much-needed children’s development and care facility within the heart of the under served southeastern Minnesota rural area. The initiative is supported in part by a gift of commercial buildings, land, and a monetary donation from Craig & Robyn Kruckeberg, and family.
The Academy’s name stems from Craig’s parents’ middle names, Lorraine Augusta and Delmond Leo Kruckeberg. Craig and Robyn, their parents, and broader family have been rural Minnesota business people for generations. As working families, they themselves experienced gaps in childcare. They recognize the value that these additional resources will bring to the surrounding communities, supporting continued workforce growth and participation.
“We recognized a need,” Craig stated. “Our community has bolstered our family throughout our journey and now we have an opportunity to give back in a consequential manner with this gift.”
The objective of the Leo Augusta Children’s Academy is to deliver a hands-on model of child development with the capacity to serve over 100 children, ages infant through 12 years of age. Under a structured curriculum, coupled with flexibility, our philosophy of learning and care will focus on emotional, intellectual, physical, and social development in a nurturing and secure environment.
Doug Anderson, Academy Director oversees the day-to-day operations. Doug has over 36 years working in education.
Classrooms are staffed with licensed teachers. Employment opportunities, both full and part time, will be generated for 20 to 25 staff at full capacity.
Amy Hinzmann, Leo Augusta Children’s Academy Board Chair, is overseeing a bold initiative. The $3 million capital campaign, entitled “You give – They thrive”, will provide resources for appointing classrooms and outdoor spaces with necessary technology, security, supplies and equipment. The campaign will also provide additional funds from which the academy may draw as needed to provide tuition scholarships and special needs consulting. Funds will not be utilized for operating expenses, such as staff salaries.
“As a nonprofit organization, our foundation looks forward to forming alliances with other community partners and business leaders; funds will be utilized in the classroom, creating a direct impact on the care, comfort and development of future generations,” Amy said. “We are excited to offer a facility which will include age-appropriate learning spaces. Together with your assistance we will be able to nurture and advance our communities”.
The completed facility will include over 18,000 square feet of building and land renovations occupying over 3 acres. The academy opened its doors in June, 2022.