Delaware County Times: Educators in Interboro Make the Case for Pre-k Education
October 10, 2019 by Kevin Tustin
PROSPECT PARK — Extending access to pre-kindergarten education access in Interboro School District was lauded by early-education advocates and state lawmakers Wednesday morning.
Over 50 district students are enrolled in full day pre-K at the district’s Kindergarten Center in Prospect Park, up from 34 in the last school year and 16 half-day students in 2017-18. A state grant worth $446,240 helped to establish three full-time classes for the year which goes to pay for three teachers and three paraprofessionals.
“We truly embrace pre-K and know and recognize the valuable role it plays in supporting our youngest students,” said Interboro Superintendent and former Kindergarten Academy Principal Bernadette Reiley. “I have always wanted to provide pre-K. With the help of Dr. Valerie Eckman, our curriculum director, and the support of the board we had a vision that if there was ever an opportunity to apply and bring pre-K to Interboro that is something we wanted to do.”
A roundtable discussion about the benefits of the district’s program yielded feedback about student’s having better social and emotional development, comprehensive learning skills and, quite simply, being ready “to school” ahead of the full-day kindergarten program that follows.
At present there are 270 kindergartners in the district and 51 pre-K slots. The current cohort will represent almost one-fifth of the next kindergarten class.
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