This is why it's so hard to believe that MNPS needs more money. We're hardly past the handwringing over the failure to get the 1/2 cent sales tax increase and the horrors that will result in loss of jobs and services and, if I'm reading this correctly, MNPS is fixing to spend $494,000 for 11 more Pre-K classes. How can that be?
Of course, to me the whole idea is just wrong. 4 year olds need to be at home with their families. If not with mom or dad, grandma or gpa or some wonderfully loving person that will snuggle with them as they read a book, let them explore the backyard, get dirty looking for bugs and fingerpainting, explain why the sky is blue and teach them how to touch that sky with their toes as they swing.
For Immediate Release Contact: Woody McMillin (615) 259-8404/office Metro Schools to open 11 new pre-kindergarten classes Oct. 3 NASHVILLE, Tenn. (Sept. 29, 2005) – Eleven Metropolitan Nashville public schools will open pre-kindergarten classes Monday, Oct. 3. Each classroom can serve up to 20 students and will be staffed by a certified teacher and an educational assistant. MNPS used an existing needs survey to determine which schools would receive the classrooms, based on the populations they serve. Attendance in a quality pre-kindergarten program is known to help prepare children with the behavioral and academic skills needed for success in kindergarten. “Children who have experience in a quality Pre-K program enter school ready to learn,” said Florence Kidd, director of Pre-K-4 for Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools. “They already have experience in a classroom setting and the social skills needed to interact with other children and the teacher. We also know they frequently have better academic success.” The Pre-K classrooms will open at the following elementary schools: Amqui, Bellshire, Hattie Cotton, Cumberland, Glengarry, Alex Green, Haywood, Inglewood, Tom Joy, Old Center, and Paragon Mills. While some classrooms are full, there are open seats at some schools. To enroll their child, families should contact the school to see if space is available and fill out a registration form. Families must live in the school zone and show proof of residency. Children must be four years old by Sept. 30, 2005, have all required immunizations, and be potty trained before they may enroll. Parents must provide transportation. The school day is from 8 a.m. until 2 p.m. Lunch and breakfast are provided. Each classroom will cost approximately $100,000 annually to operate, with grant money from the Voluntary Pre-K for Tennessee initiative paying 56% of that cost and a local match paying the remaining 44%. MNPS currently has 49 Pre-K classrooms. Metro Nashville Public Schools provide a range of educational opportunities to nearly 73,000 students in Nashville and Davidson County. The governing body for MNPS is the Metropolitan Nashville and Davidson County Board of Public Education, a nine-member group elected by residents of Metropolitan Nashville. For more information, please visit www.mnps.org <http://www.mnps.org/> . ###