Not so fast… we need your help to make full day kindergarten a reality in North Kingstown! NK is one of only a handful of towns yet to implement district-wide full-day Kindergarten (FDK). We are very close to making full day K a reality, so it is imperative that parents demonstrate our interest to the Town Council (the decision-maker regarding the necessary increase in the school budget to fund full day K).
At this January 26th meeting, the School Committee will discuss the budget and full-day K with the Town Council. The recent survey shows overwhelming support for full day K (over 90%)! Our understanding is that the community, the Superintendent, and the School Committee support the implementation of full-day K starting in the 2015-2016 school year. If we can get 50 people to attend this meeting, it will make a huge difference to visibly show support for full-day K. Please make every effort to attend!
Whether you can attend or not, please click the following link to email the Town Council to state your support for full-day K: email@example.com.
MORE INFORMATION ABOUT FULL-DAY KINDERGARTEN
Studies show that full-day K provides long-lasting and concrete academic, social, and emotional benefits to students. Students in full-day K not only perform better academically, but they also receive more social-emotional learning, which results in less stress and aggression and increases confidence and problem-solving. It not only benefits the students who participate, but also the school and community at large. For example, studies link full-day K to decreased retention rates and remediation services in later grades. This is a savings for the school department over the long run and a benefit to our youngest students. In addition, lack of full-day K is the reason often cited by NK parents who send their children to charter schools, all of which offer full day K. NK currently has 38 students in charter schools, for which it pays $239,000 per year. An independent contractor conducted a feasibility study and determined that the cost of implementing full day K is approximately $550,000. There are some state level funds that could offset this cost as well as some savings from elimination of mid-day bus runs necessitated by 1/2 day K.
Once a student starts at a charter school due to parental preference for full day K, their siblings are automatically eligible to enroll and most families elect to stay vs. transitioning their children after K. Since NK is one of the few remaining districts that does not offer district-wide full-day K, charter school enrollment from NK residents is likely to increase, and with it, the cost to our town. In addition, with the increased curriculum demands, there simply is not enough time to address all the required areas. This deficiency will not only lead to lowered test scores, but increased anxiety and stress for our kindergartners as they are necessarily rushed throughout the day and not afforded the time for a more developmentally appropriate pace of instruction. NK has traditionally enjoyed a reputation as a town that values education and our schools are often a draw for new residents. If we do not act to demand full-day K and continue to lag behind other communities like Jamestown, Newport, Barrington, and Scituate, property values may follow lowered test scores. Most importantly, our children deserve the right to a positive start. Please help us make full-day K a reality.
TO HELP, PLEASE:
- Send an email to all Town Council members expressing support for full-day Kindergarten
- Attend the meeting on January 26th at 7pm at the NK Senior Center
- Spread the word!!!