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Kindergarten in Crisis?

Kindergarten programs across the country seem to be changing – and not for the better. NYC recently changed its kindergarten admissions process and the kids have been placed on waiting lists. This is not unheard of when applying to independent schools, but most parents made real estate decisions so that their children could attend local neighborhood public schools. Parents’ want a positive outcome from this crisis, but their emotions are running the gamut – from anxious, to furious to desperate. Read more about it:
http://www.nytimes.com/2009/05/01/nyregion/01kindergarten.html?_r=3&hp

According to educator, Deborah Meier, and a new report by The Alliance for Childhood, another change causing a crisis in kindergarten is the absence of open-ended, imaginative play, and children making their own art work in kindergarten (vs. teacher made turkeys, snowman, etc.). This, along with increasing class size and changing admissions policies, has many people wondering, what's happening to kindergarten?  http://www.forumforeducation.org/blog/new-report-chronicles-crisis-kindergarten.

We love teaching our kindergartners and feel fortunate to work in an independent school that values art, play and has the financial resources to keep class sizes small. Are you experiencing similar changes and challenges in your community? What do you think? Lets keep the conversation going and maybe we can help affect positive change.

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Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in Inside Naomi & Alexandra's Kindergarten Classroom are strictly those of the author and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Scholastic, Inc.