DeKalb County Schools Apply for Pre-K Funding

Northeast Alabama
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RAINSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) -- The DeKalb County Board of Education will learn in two weeks if they can start Pre-K programs at any or all of the county's elementary schools.

The school system applied for grants to enable them to provide instruction to 4-year-olds.

"It gets them ready, and gets their skills built up for kindergarten because lots of the new common core curriculum standards have brought down first grade standards into kindergarten," DeKalb County Schools instructional supervisor Mary Lance said.

"It kind of gets those kids prepared and ready to go into kindergarten."

There are nine individual grant requests for the various schools.  If approved, Lance said the school system would hope to have rooms available next kindergarten classrooms so they see what the school environment is to get ready for kindergarten.

The young students would learn reading basics and social skills such as going through a cafeteria line and having recess, and allow kindergarten to focus on actual academics.

"The kids need to come to school knowing their letters, knowing their sounds," Lance said.

"It used to be that kindergarten kind of played social aspect. This is kind of the social aspect, in Pre-K," she said.  "These students need that extra boost, especially with the curriculum, the way the standards have dropped down [from first grade to kindergarten] and are more rigorous, and more stringent for the students to know."

The schools expect to hear if the grant requests are approved on June 21.

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