Parents of kindergartens across the nation are celebrating a $25,000 gift from the K-8 Education Department to teach them writing and math skills.
The Department of Education’s Office of Student Development, which includes K-9 and elementary schools, will give out 1,500 paper books in the next year to teachers at kindergarten through 12th grade.
The books are part of a program called K-4 to Educate, which aims to get teachers to read and write to students in a variety of topics, including reading, writing, and math.
It’s the first time the KU Department of Elementary and Secondary Education has given out a paper book in the last 15 years, according to the department’s Web site.
The gift will help prepare teachers for the challenging curriculum.
“There are many kids who are just not in school, so we know there are times when kids don’t have the opportunity to get out of their classrooms,” said Kim Sibley, an elementary school teacher and principal in St. Charles, Missouri.
“We want them to have those experiences so they can make good decisions for themselves and their kids.”
St. Charles is the fourth school district in the country to receive the gift.
Schools in Alabama, Colorado, Georgia, Iowa, Louisiana, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia and Washington, D.C., will get similar packages.
“It is an opportunity to teach kids that writing is not just for kids who can’t read,” said Dr. James Krieger, the chief academic officer for the KCSO.
“It’s a good way to teach a lot of different subjects that we teach in kindergarten.”
While many K-6 schools are in the process of changing their curricula, teachers and administrators in St Charles are already working to get the students through the K 4 to K 6 levels.
“We’re not just focusing on what’s in kindergarten,” Sibleys said.
“There’s a lot going on at the K4 to K6 level.
I mean, it’s not like we’re just looking at what’s going to be taught in kindergarten, but we’re thinking about what’s coming next.”
K-8 is one of three K-5 districts to receive a K-1 package for a program dubbed K-7 to K-10, which will help teach students in reading, math, and science.
The K-3 and K-2 packages have helped a number of K-11 schools, including K-13, K-16, K 17, K 18, and K 19.
“As teachers and parents, we feel really good about what we’re doing,” said St. Louis Public Schools President Mary Lou Boggess.
“This is an important step in ensuring that we are doing our best to prepare students for the challenges that lie ahead.”
The KU department said the packages are meant to be used to supplement the existing K- 5 and K 6 classes.
“K-5 is our lowest level and we’re working with teachers to get it to the next level,” said KCSEO spokeswoman Kim Sabley.
The department plans to begin using K- 4 to 8 classes in 2019, and eventually K- 8 to 10 classes in 2020.