Christopher Ripp Program reaches maximum capacity

DANBURY—“Research indicates that the most effective Early Learning Childhood education programs, especially those in low-income communities, include parent education,” explained Holly Doherty-Lemoine, executive director of Foundations in Education as she describes the vision of the Christopher Ripp Early Learning Program.

This early intervention program, piloted at St. Peter School in Danbury, was created through a $1 million gift from Peter and Barbara Ripp to Foundations in Education, in memory of their son, Christopher.

The Christopher Ripp Early Learning Program assists parents of three and four year old’s, as the primary educators of their children, by providing them with tools to help nurture social, physical, emotional and academic growth, in a faith-filled, family-centered learning community.

Mary Lou Torre, principal of St. Peter School, is excited to announce that now in its second year, due to its popularity, enrollment in the program is at maximum capacity.

The program runs three days a week after school for multiple six week programs and includes activities such as enrichment in math, literacy, spiritual life, art, movement and community building. Parent sessions occur three times during the six-week session and include family dinner, adult- geared discussions in finance, nutrition and health and family activities partnered with their child. Families and children are supported as they travel together on an academic and spiritual journey.

A grateful parent, Estafania Chin, shared, “Leo learned a lot from the program. I have seen a big change in him. His social skills are impressive. As a family, we love the food! The engagement you guys provide is amazing! Here, the kids teach us. At home, we tell them what to do.”

“The benefits of this program are immense for both children and families,” explained Principal Torre. “This program has afforded our students an opportunity to get a head start on their educational learning pathway. It is heartwarming to watch the excitement and joy the children display.”

(For more information about the Christopher Ripp Early Learning Program or other transformative initiatives provided through Foundations in Education, visit