What’s happening in Rainbow Schools?
Full-Time Early Learning/Junior Kindergarten in Rainbow Schools
Rainbow District School Board will offer a new Early Learning Program in Ministry of Education approved schools effective September 2010. In addition, the Board’s Policy and Finance Committee has recommended that full-day Junior Kindergarten be offered every day in all other Rainbow Schools in Sudbury, Espanola and Manitoulin. The recommendation will be presented to the Board for approval at its regular meeting on Monday, December 14, 2009.
“We have completed an estimate of the costs to expand Junior Kindergarten in Sudbury, Espanola and Manitoulin,” said Director of Education Jean Hanson. “Thanks to prudent spending on the part of the Board, we are able to cover the additional costs with reserves and make full-day programming available for all four and five year olds.” The Board will invest $1.3 million more in Junior Kindergarten in the 2010-2011 school year.
“Early years are important years,” added Director Hanson. “Research has shown that the early years influence success in learning and life. This investment in our youngest citizens will pay huge dividends in the long-term.”
Recognizing its importance, Rainbow District School Board has offered full-day Senior Kindergarten daily for many years. Full-day Junior Kindergarten is currently offered three full days one week and two full days the next week.
“Making Junior Kindergarten available on a full-time basis will certainly come as good news to parents/guardians,” said Director Hanson. “Children will be immersed in a rich learning environment where their social, emotional, physical and developmental growth will be nurtured through stimulating hands-on activities.”
The Early Learning Program will be phased in over the next five years, beginning in September 2010. A teacher and early childhood educator will lead the program, with average class sizes of 26 children. For a fee, parents will have an option of enrolling their children in before and after school programs, providing there is sufficient interest. There will also be a new curriculum for four and five-year-olds.
“The Ministry of Education’s Early Learning Program has far reaching implications,” said Director Hanson. “This is just the beginning of the journey in the creation of an integrated system of support for our youngest citizens and their families. We look forward to introducing the Early Learning Program in all Rainbow Schools in the years to come.”
Registrations for full-time Early Learning and Junior Kindergarten will begin in January. For enrolment in Junior Kindergarten, the child must be four years of age by December 31, 2010. For enrolment in Senior Kindergarten, the child must be five years of age by December 31, 2010.
For more information about these programs, visit rainbowschools.ca or contact the Rainbow School nearest you.
Nicole Charette, Senior Advisor,
Corporate Communications and Strategic Planning,
Rainbow District School Board, 674-3171, ext. 7217.