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POLL: Should the District Offer Full-Time Kindergarten to Some Students?

Question of the day looks at the school district's full-time kindergarten pilot program

The school district will be

Some residents are looking forward to the new program, saying that full-time kindergarten is desperately needed in Lacey. Others, expressed disappointment in how it’s being introduced.

This September there will be one full-day kindergarten class per elementary school with a class size of 24, district Supervisor of Humanities William Zylinski said.

School Board President Jack Martenak explained at the July meeting that previously there were six sections of half-day kindergarten in each elementary school. Now, there will be four sections of half-day and one full-day kindergarten class in each elementary school.

There will be a selection process through an anonymous lottery that will be done publicly, Zylinski said.

Some Lacey Patch commenters have previously said that having some kindergartens in full-time and others in half-day will create a gap and that the program shouldn’t be offered if it’s not offered to everyone.

What do you think? Should the district wait to offer full-time kindergarten until it's available to everyone? Cast your vote in the poll below and explain your reasoning in the comment section.

tammy jackson July 25, 2012 at 10:13 PM
Laceygoingdownhill I agree with what you said 100%
Sue Jackson July 25, 2012 at 11:47 PM
To GB Shore - You may think this is comical and that they are only Kindergarteners but someday one of them may own the company you work for run the state you live in. And I know plenty of 5 year olds that have better attention span than some 40 year old. I' m a grandmother of several school age children, yes I only had half day kindergarten but so did everyone else, times were different then. You need to move into the real world. Maybe start by using your real name on these comments that you think are so comical. And do you have children in school? Every child should have the same advantage from the start.
Sue Jackson July 25, 2012 at 11:57 PM
Not sure if you have. Hidden in the system, and. It may not be Algebra or Chemistry but you need to check out what kindergarten children are learning across the country. Sme already speak other languages, read on 2nd grade levels. Kids know colors and ABCs when they are only 3 years old. And I pay taxes too And to G B Shore - Would like to know where you lived that they didn't offer kindergarten in the school system. Besides the way Lacey Twp Board of Ed did this was so inappropriate. Back a few months ago this was a NoGo then in the middle of summer they come up with this idea?
Shannon July 26, 2012 at 01:33 AM
I do agree that each parent is responsible to continue the learning experience at home, and should not rely solely on the school. I am in support of full day kindergarten, or half day kindergarten if it is not in the budget to offer full day to ALL students. We moved here knowing that Lacey had half day and were fine with that. Had we known then that there was going to be a "lottery" for SOME students to have an advantage over their peers we would not have moved here. Kindergarten is much more then just learning "colors and abc's". Things have changed greatly over the past decade. Oh, and I'm not mad that it's not full day for all students because I need "free daycare". That is ludicrous if some people think that is the main reason that people are passionate about the "lottery". People are voicing their legitimate concerns for the love and wanting what's best for their child, not for what they stand to gain as an adult if they "don't have to pay for daycare".
GB Shore July 26, 2012 at 12:36 PM
Sue, perhaps your comprehension reading is lacking. I have stated that I have had two kids go thru the system here in Lacey. I DO live in the real world. Just because I think many on here are a bit over the edge does not align with your views, doesn't mean I am out of touch. Just because we disagree on the tone on here does not mean I am out of touch.....not a very good trait to be teaching your grand kids IMHO....Willingness to listen to to others' opinions especially when they differ from yours is what you should be demonstrating....not telling the opposing view that they are out of touch. Maybe you should get with it.
GB Shore July 26, 2012 at 12:41 PM
Sue, it does not matter where I came from or what town it was. the fact of the matter and a point we do agree on is that Kindergarten SHOULD be done here in Lacey. However, it is a daunting task and requires additional money and resources....Dr. Brower seems to be very sharop and from what I hear, has ruffled the status quo/nepotism/the way we have done things forever BOE crowd....so that is a good thing. We do not have Kiondergarten becaue the supposed educational experts on the Board are too busy worrying about placating to the union and making bad financial decisions on how and where to spend money....you need to look no further than the BOE members who have been on the Board for years and years...THEY are the problem. Everyone on here who has an issue should overwhelm the next BOE meeting on this issue. My only point is that there is nothing other than that, that can be done. In the end, every parent is responsible for their kid....so instead of whining and procrastinating, get your kid the advantage you want them to have because there is no other option here in Lacey right now. You can't just plop a full day program here on a dime....
GB Shore July 26, 2012 at 12:43 PM
Agree Sharon but do NOT be naive that there are parents who look at school and daycare for their kids. My kids had plenty of friends who unfortunately, we became pseudo parents to their friends...because their parents were disinterested, had substance problems etc. I did not say all parents...I said some...
GB Shore July 26, 2012 at 01:04 PM
Hindsight is 20/20, especially when there is no way you could know that. If I had know the market was going to crash in 1998 and 2003 I would have put my money into Cash.....the only thing you could have done before you moved here was to ask the BOE or the Supt. at the time, was what the plans were for full time Kindergarten. That's it...so you move here and now they are FINALLY trying to do something....and they get whacked. A bigger question I now have is why is everyone so shocked? Unless someone is telling me that this approach has NEVER been talked about in ANY of the BOE meetings, then I ask, how many BOE meetings did all the parents who are bent out of shape go to? Had they gone, would you have all known about it BEFORE they made their plans etc? I bet is everyone had been going and questioned it, the BOE would have seen that maybe it's not a good idea.....so now this is a bit of Monday Morning QB'ing as I see it. If you care about your kids, be involved...go to the meetings (like I did), meet with teachers...admins etc.... AGAIN, I think this is not a good approach either ....all I am trying to make people see is that ultimately, it is YOUR job as a parent to deal with what is....what is past is past...when you have an issue, find and suggest solutions...AND....be part of the process and be informed....it appears many here were not aware that this was even being discussed...
Angela E July 26, 2012 at 02:18 PM
Good point!
Angela E July 26, 2012 at 02:23 PM
LtownGirl, everything you mention is "higher advantage" for full-day: slower pace, teachers can really explain topics, dedicate time to more needed areas, more one on one time
Angela E July 26, 2012 at 02:30 PM
Got a letter saying its 2:00 at LHS.
Laceygoingdownhill July 26, 2012 at 03:14 PM
No GB, many were aware but haven't you noticed the BOE does exactly what they want without any consideration to parent opinions. My kids use to run home from school to go to the bathroom because the school bathrooms were so filled with smoke and disgusting that they couldn't go there. Finally after at least 5 yrs of complaints they are trying to do something to fix the problem. My bet is this pilot kindergarten program will run a few years before they figure out it doesn't work and is setting some kids up for failure. Then they won't have the money to make it full time for all so it will go back to part time for all.
Laceygoingdownhill July 26, 2012 at 03:16 PM
CLAP CLAP CLAP - you said that perfectly Shannon!
GB Shore July 26, 2012 at 05:28 PM
But I also do not see many people at all at the BOE meetings...that is fact. Add to the mix that these people keep getting voted in...same people year after year...there should be a limit on how long one can serve....but many of these folks keep getting voted in...and when others (Tom Palczewski) get on, the rest gang up and run him out of Dodge....sickening...Why do these people keep getting voyted in year after year, decade after decade?????
Laceygoingdownhill July 26, 2012 at 05:56 PM
Completely agree with you there GB.
grace July 26, 2012 at 11:48 PM
sounds like a way to get a babysitter
Favorite Teacher July 27, 2012 at 01:52 AM
“Kindergarten-aged children are at a “critical period” for development, and future success in school is largely dependent upon a successful transition into the full-day school environment” (Entwisle and Alexander 1998, p. 351). One solution, full-day kindergarten, is being implemented in more and more schools. For example, 63% of children in the United States were attending full-day programs in 2002 (US Census Bureau 2002)… A full-day program provides a balanced experience for children. One issue is the cost of running a full-day program relative to the benefits of providing the program. The costs most frequently cited include hiring extra teachers and providing the necessary space to accommodate the kindergarten children who would now be on school grounds for the full school day (Cannon et al. 2006; Lee et al. 2006)… With respect to cost, a child’s failure in kindergarten can cost a school district as much money as hiring additional teachers when one considers the expense of remedial education, additional resources and resource specialists, and repeating the grade itself. For example, Gullo (2000) found that children in full-day programs were less likely to be retained a grade than children in half-day programs, although there were no significant differences in special education placement.
proud July 27, 2012 at 01:53 AM
Try and keep the attention of a five year old all day long. Jenny Jones is right on. It's all about babysitting. Not to mention job preservation
Favorite Teacher July 27, 2012 at 01:54 AM
…When considering children’s academic and social backgrounds, it was found that full-day kindergarten attendees were more cognitively advantaged (Lee et al. 2006). These benefits also can be found in rural–suburban and rural communities. To illustrate, Baskett et al. (2005) found significant differences in measures of academic attainment between children who attended a half-day program year 1 and children who attended a full-day program year 2 in a suburban–rural community. These gains included many forms of reading and literacy skills such as story sequence and reading level. …Others also have found that teachers see an inherent value to implementing a full-day curriculum. Teacher perceptions from the Baskett et al. (2005) study were uniformly positive with respect to finding increases in children’s academic performance. A quote from Carnes and Albrecht (2007) summarizes the advantages kindergarten teachers found in implementing a full-day program: “Teachers stressed how additional time affected their ability to provide higher quality instruction, enhance the curriculum, and initiate needed interventions. They voiced their relief in no longer finding it necessary to fit the curriculum into the constrained half-day environment” (p. 69). They were now able to present curriculum in a time frame more conducive to learning.
Favorite Teacher July 27, 2012 at 01:55 AM
Parents also appear to be satisfied with full-day programs. Carnes and Albrecht (2007) found that use of a full-day program increased parental involvement in their children’s educational experiences in the classroom as well as that parents reported a generally high level of satisfaction with the full-day program. Parents were especially enthusiastic about the advantages of a full-day program for children who were not academically or developmentally prepared to start school. Baskett et al. (2005) indicated that the major complaint from parents was that their children were tired. Otherwise, the parents in that study were highly favorable regarding their children’s progress for both academic and social outcomes. Parents in this sample were happy to have a full-day versus half-day option, which may reflect the fact that not all children are ready for a full-day program when they first enter formal school.
Favorite Teacher July 27, 2012 at 01:56 AM
But we now have parent vs. parent... well played administration- divide and conquer...
Laceygoingdownhill July 27, 2012 at 12:46 PM
I can see a valid law suit coming against the BOE from all the parents whose child didn't get picked for full time.
Bytheweigh July 27, 2012 at 01:51 PM
Favorite teacher, perhaps you should attain your administrative certificate! You hit the nail right on the head with every single fact and stat, amazing how you laid it all out for the "Patch public" yet our own administration did not. It was a behind closed doors decision, (made last Spring, not mid summer) no opinion from the public, and once again, a swift, possibly detrimental decision has been made without regard to fall out, backlash, or the sensible wants or needs of our community. It amazes me that this is how Lacey is now operating, it seems to me to be an iron hand ruling the district with no regard to the peons left to deal with the aftermath. I thank you favorite teacher for outlining the truth, the basics, the common sense angle to this issue. Perhaps that's what the Lacey BOE needs more of, more common sense decision making and less smoke and mirrors.
GB Shore July 28, 2012 at 11:59 AM
bytheweigh, you stated how Lacey is "now" operating????? It has been this way in the 10+ years I have lived here....it is how the BOE and the Town Committee has been...at least many realized that it was time for Parker and Reid to go.....now same needs to be done to the BOE to get some of the L O N G time members voted out, as well as the puppet head newer BOE members who subscribe to the same philosophy as those who have been on the BOE for years and years....
Laceygoingdownhill July 28, 2012 at 03:00 PM
I've been in Lacey since a kid in the 70's. Maybe I'm just more aware of what's going on now, but I never thought it has ever been this bad. This kindergarten situation, the graduation disaster, the mold and filth in the high school, etc.... It's really getting to the point of this town being a huge embarrassment.
GB Shore July 28, 2012 at 04:29 PM
I don't think the town is, but the leadership is....
Bytheweigh July 30, 2012 at 05:26 PM
Re-read LtownGirl what you said............................. "this full day gives the teacher a chance to slow down the pace in the classroom and really explain what is going on and dedicate time to more needed areas and allows more one on one with the students in class. the curriculum wouldn't change and each student will come out knowing the same things but hopefully a full day will gave a stronger impact on the students work." This is EXACTLY what will give the full day kids an advantage, more one on one time, slower pace, perhaps a stronger impact on the students work. The current half day program/curriculum is basically based on a full day guideline, regardless of time allotment, however, it is time that is needed, that will essentially benefit the teaching of these children. More time = a better understanding, which in turn results in an academic advantage, no matter how you slice it. A full day program would be any kindergarten teacher's dream! It should be postponed till everyone, students, teachers, and parents alike, can benefit.
Miche August 02, 2012 at 11:43 PM
As a parent and a dad that is now living in lacey, shame on this district for holding a lottery so a four year old gets a better chance than say a six year old! Who is the person or persons responsible for this.EVERYONE should look into this im sure there is a legal component that has been overlooked shame on you all!!
Miche August 02, 2012 at 11:45 PM
Miche August 02, 2012 at 11:46 PM


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