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D. 202 Board gets details on four full-day kindergarten options

District 202 administrators presented options for providing full-day kindergarten to all eligible students to the Board of Education at its January 14, 2019 regular meeting,

Full-day kindergarten was identified as a top district priority in the 2011 Five Year Strategic Plan. As well, several neighboring districts have been able to implement full-day kindergarten programs.

However, District 202 does not have enough space in its 17 elementary schools to implement full-day kindergarten for all students. District staff project about 1,500 students will be eligible for kindergarten next year.

District 202 implemented a pilot full-day kindergarten program in 2016-17 in which 24 students are chosen in a random, computerized lottery for each of the 17 elementary schools – 408 in all.

The four options that may create adequate space for full-day kindergarten include:

  • Building an additional elementary school
  • Building an addition to the Bonnie McBeth Learning Center and implementing space saving options in the 17 elementary schools
  • Building an addition to Bonnie McBeth Learning Center; moving all satellite preschool programs out of the elementary schools; and adjusting elementary attendance zones
  • Implementing multiple space saving options to allow current elementary home schools to house full-day kindergarten.

Administrators shared the benefits and drawbacks for each option, including cost, sustainability, the likelihood of additional enrollment growth, the need for additional attendance zone changes and the impact on class sizes, curriculum and resources. The Board took no action.

The presentation was the first of a three-part series of Board meeting presentations. The Board plans to hear updates on an 8-period day for high school students on January 28, 2019 and modified school start times on February 11, 2019.