Parents see benefits of all day kindergarten - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Parents see benefits of all day kindergarten

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SPOKANE, Wash. -

Starting next school year, all schools are eligible to get funding for full school days for kindergartners.

Some districts have already had this in place, but others are working on phasing it in. The reason why it can take time is because it’s a combination of getting funding and having enough space. The recommended classroom size for kindergartners is 17 students to one teacher.

For some parents, hearing that their child will have full-time kindergarten is good news.

Chelsea Genteman has two kids. Her daughter, Olivia, is 2 years old now, and Chelsea’s already thinking about what she’ll have to do when she goes back to work as a teacher.

If kindergarten were a half day, there would be extra daycare costs. On average, daycare costs families $972 a month. So having a longer day, “we don't have to scramble around and have child care, pick up services and that,” Chelsea says.

It's not just the costs. There are benefits academically.

“By putting them in kindergarten at five, then they have that extra opportunity to organize those skills and make them functional,” she says.

Research shows a full day of kindergarten helps academically and socially.

“For me it's the cutting edge - I'm for it. I will be putting my daughter in full day kindergarten,” she says.

Here’s a list of school districts and whether they offer full time kindergarten:

Mead School District – Shiloh, Brentwood, and Evergreen will full time kindergarten starting 2016-2017 school year

Spokane Public Schools – Offers full time kindergarten for all schools.

West Valley School District – Offers full time kindergarten for all schools

Central Valley School District – Will be in all elementary schools (except for Summit) by 2016-2017

Coeur d’Alene School District – A few of their schools have full time kindergarten, but they don’t have funding or space to roll it out to all schools in the district

Post Falls School District – Their schools have half day kindergarten

Medical Lake School District – two of their elementary schools have full time kindergarten

If you have additional questions, call the principal of your school or your school district.

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