Skip to content
Search this website:

What is Catherine Hershey Schools for Early Learning (CHS)?

Catherine Hershey Schools for Early Learning is a new early childhood education program in Pennsylvania. Children from lower-income and at-risk backgrounds are eligible to enroll.

CHS centers will open beginning in 2023. They will provide cost-free care to children from birth to age 5, supporting:

  • Hands-on classroom learning
  • Social and emotional development
  • Cognitive growth

CHS centers are subsidiaries of Milton Hershey School (MHS) and will be staffed and operated independently of the Milton Hershey School core model.

What will the CHS program look like?

CHS will provide a core early learning program. Its curriculum will enhance students’ educational, social, emotional, and cognitive growth. It also will provide students with nutritious meals and other needed supplies. Importantly, CHS will offer integrated support services to its families.

CHS will provide a year-round experience. Anticipated hours of operation are 7 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Friday.

Where will the Catherine Hershey Schools for Early Learning be located?

All CHS centers will be located in Pennsylvania.

  • First location: Hershey (on the MHS campus)
  • Second location: Harrisburg (Midtown – at the intersection of 6th and Muench streets)
  • Additional locations: To be determined, based on further research and community input

When will the Catherine Hershey Schools for Early Learning open?

Our centers are expected to begin to open 2023.

  • First location (Hershey): 2023
  • Second location (Harrisburg): 2024

Who will be eligible for enrollment?

Admissions policies and criteria for CHS will be similar to MHS. Income eligibility and adequacy of care criteria are the same. Each CHS center will serve 150 students.

More information about the CHS admissions process will be available later this year.

Does enrollment in one of the Catherine Hershey Schools for Early Learning guarantee admission to Milton Hershey School?

No. CHS students will not be automatically admitted to MHS upon turning 5. They are invited to apply for admission to MHS.

What employment opportunities are available?

CHS offers a variety of fulfilling and mission-driven employment opportunities. CHS is currently hiring for positions at the first CHS center in Hershey and the CHS Central Office. The CHS Central Office, the initiative’s administrative office, will eventually include over 20 positions. Each center will have up to 80 employees. Please visit the CHS Careers page for current job postings and opportunities.

Catherine Hershey Schools for Early Learning are subsidiaries of Milton Hershey School and will be staffed and operated independently of the Milton Hershey School core model.

Catherine Hershey Schools for Early Learning admits students of any race, color, national and ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethnic origin in administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other school-administered programs.