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Family Time: Get your child ready for kindergarten in one stop

November 9, 2018

Get ready for next fall at Rochester Public Schools’ Kick Off to Kindergarten. Hosted by PAIIR (the district’s Early Childhood Family Education program), the event is designed to introduce families of next year’s (2019-2020) kindergartners to a variety of school district resources while preparing kids and parents for the kindergarten experience.

“The reason we hold Kick Off to Kindergarten every year is to help families bridge from the world of preschool to the world of K-12,” said Amy Ward, PAIIR preschool coordinator. “There’s all of the stuff you need to know about the school district, plus all of the things you can be doing right now to prepare your student for kindergarten in the fall.”

The event starts with a sign-in, where families will get a checklist of school district connections they can make — Transportation, Student Nutrition Services, School Age Child Care (SACC), Registration and Records, Early Childhood Screening, and more.

“You can get your child’s lunch account set up, see if you qualify for busing, learn about before- and after-school as well as summer SACC, talk to Registration and Records about any missing paperwork, make an appointment for your child’s Early Childhood Screening,” said Ward. “It’s a great one-stop shopping opportunity to touch base with all of the school district departments.”

Families also have the opportunity to meet with representatives from the district’s neighborhood elementary schools as well as the district-wide schools.

“Each school is typically represented by a principal and a kindergarten teacher. That way you get both perspectives,” said Ward. “It’s a great way to see all of the schools and an excellent opportunity to learn more about your student’s school.”

Families can also learn about current preschool opportunities as well as tips for things you can do right now, at home, to prepare your little one for kindergarten.

“PAIIR parent educators will be there to answer all of your questions,” said Ward. “If you want to get your student signed up for a preschool class, we’ll have information on local openings. We’ll also have handouts on easy ways to help prepare your child and your family for the transition to kindergarten — get familiar with the school by visiting the playground, practice things like sorting, coloring, and cutting, and read, read, read.”

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