Full-day K program comes to all schools

Full-day kindergarten

School District No. 42 is rolling out full-day kindergarten to the remainder of its elementary schools this year as the program becomes adopted by all schools province-wide.

Albion, Alouette, Alexander Robinson, Kanaka Creek, Laity View, and Pitt Meadows elementary schools will all be offering the full-day kindergarten curriculum for the first time this year, in addition to Eric Langton elementary’s French program and Hammond elementary’s Montessori program.

All other elementary schools implemented the program last year.

Laurie Meston, the district’s elementary school director, said she expects 50 kindergarten classes this year, as well as seven kindergarten/Grade 1 split classes.

“The response from teachers and parents was very positive,” Meston said of the program’s introduction last year.”

The curriculum focuses on play-based and project-based learning. Of the teachers teaching kindergarten this year, close to 20 will be new to the grade.

Province-wide, 37,000 kindergarten students are expected to enrol in the program, thanks to a $150 million investment in classrooms and an operating budget expanded to $345 million.

Education minister George Abbott said some parents were apprehensive about putting five-year-olds into a full-day school program, but the pilot program last year was well received.

“It was remarkable how the kids embraced play-based learning that is a part of the kindergarten program,” he said.

– with files