The Rutledge Institute for Early Childhood Education is a partnership between The Village and PennWest University California. The Institute is operated by The Village and its teachers, assisted by Rutledge Institute Scholars who are studying Early Childhood Education at PennWest California. 

Children ages 3–5 are eligible for scholarships- state-of-the-art early childhood education and care at the Rutledge Institute.

Curriculum at The Rutledge Institute

Students learn within an innovative curriculum that focuses on STREAM: science, technology, reading, engineering, arts, and math, as well as literacy in this emerging information age.

Birdie Basics- Golf Program





Admissions & Scholarships at The Rutledge Institute

All children attending the Rutledge Institute receive full scholarships funded through the generosity of Tom and Karen Rutledge. The program is located on the PennWest California campus and operates Monday through Friday, twelve (12) months per year.

Each scholarship recipient is required to attend at least five (5) hours per day, five (5) days per week and be toilet-trained. In addition, parents/guardians are required to attend two (2) free workshops each quarter or participate in four (4) hours pre-approved volunteer activity. Undergraduate Rutledge Institute scholars spend time in the classrooms learning and assisting teachers.

Our Accreditations & Affiliations


From our Rutledge Institute Families

“It has been amazing to see how much our daughter has grown at Rutledge.  We cannot thank you enough for this amazing opportunity and we feel blessed to have been given it.  This year was filled with many ups and downs but the Rutledge Institute was our rock for our daughter.  She will miss all of her friends and teachers!  Thank you for all that you have done and that you continue to do for the children.  It means more than you may ever know!”

“We feel so blessed to have our children at your centers.  Thank you so much for taking care of L since she was 3 months old.  It was very hard for us to allow someone else to take care of our baby however you and your staff provided kindness, safety, love, care and protection to L.  Under your care she has been able to learn, grow and develop into a happy, healthy and strong little girl!  Event though she is leaving the comfort and safety of you and your staff, I am confident that she is prepared for the next step in her development.  Thank you so much for all you have done for her and our family!”

“I wanted to take a minute to thank the Rutledge’s for the amazing gift you have given o my daughter and all the other children that will positively be impacted by your generosity.  The education and support that she has received while at the Rutledge Institute has helped her to grow not only academically but also socially.  There is no greater responsibility than entrusting someone else to aid in my child’s development and I have full faith and confidence in the team at the school.  Our family has grown close to many of the team and are grateful for the support we have received.  Your family has not lonely heled the children, families, but also the community.”

“As a counselor I especially appreciate your dedication to educating children and the way that learning is incorporated into experiences and playful activities.  I have collaborated with teachers and witnessed their dedication to the children’s social emotional learning as well as their educational goals.  My child has a safe space to go and take time if needed, they do yoga, and many other coping strategies.  These teachings will serve as a foundation that they will build on throughout their lives.”

“I can’t thank you all enough for your dedication the growth and development of our daughter and so many kids throughout the years.  Your efforts will have such positive effects for many future generations.  I know you all work incredibly hard, and I’m sure I don’t know the half of it, but I hope you know that you’re greatly appreciated and valued.”

“Thank you for all that you do for our families.  You, and your team of incredible men and women that make The Village/Rutledge fun, safe, educational, and loving are a reminder that the world has such beautiful souls in it.”

“I wanted you to let you know that I dedicated my graduation cap to those who made college possible for me, and I added you to it.  Thank you for helping me make my dreams come true, and for being an example of the woman I want to be someday.”

“I am so grateful for the education and care our child has received.  I know that she will move right into kindergarten with no issues.  Thank you for all your hard work to keep these schools running smoothly.  The Village and Rutledge have meant the world to our family!”