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    "Quality preschool means taking a comprehensive approach to laying a strong foundation for children’s success in school and life." - Molly Tafoya

     
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    California Kindergarten Readiness Act
     
     
    LAUP Statement on Kindergarten Readiness Act

    “Sadly, only half of California's low-income preschoolers attend existing state preschool programs or federal Head Start programs, and only one-quarter of all children are provided with transitional kindergarten,” says Celia C. Ayala, CEO of LAUP. “We need to rally behind all efforts to increase access to quality early learning opportunities. This bill draft is a first step to increasing access to early education for California's children. LAUP will continue to work with the bill's sponsors to ensure that parents still enjoy the ability to enroll their children in the early education settings that are appropriate for them.”

    "Lamentablemente, sólo la mitad de los niños de edad preescolar de bajos ingresos de California asisten a programas preescolares estatales existentes o programas federales de Head Start, y sólo a una cuarta parte de todos los niños se les proporciona con el kínder transitorio", dice Celia C. Ayala, directora ejecutiva de la LAUP. "Necesitamos reunirnos detrás de todos los esfuerzos para aumentar el acceso de las oportunidades al aprendizaje temprano de calidad. Este proyecto de ley es un primer paso para aumentar el acceso a la educación temprana para los niños de California. LAUP continuará trabajando con los patrocinadores del proyecto de ley para asegurar que los padres siguán gozando de la posibilidad de matricular a sus hijos en los centros de educación temprana que sean apropiados para ellos. "

    Read Overview, Press Release, Full Text of Bill from Early Edge California

    Summary

    Kindergarten Readiness Act of 2014 proposes to address the achievement gap among California’s children by providing access to high-quality transitional kindergarten programs for all four-year olds.  Currently, only half of California’s low-income preschoolers attend existing state preschool programs or Federal Head Start programs and only one-quarter of all children are provided with transitional kindergarten.

    Bill amends the existing Education Code to provide all four year-old children access to voluntary, high-quality transitional kindergarten programs one year before entering kindergarten.  School districts enrolling children in transitional kindergarten who are four by September 1st will now be able to include these pupils in their average daily attendance.

    Bill Provisions

    • Children in transitional kindergarten will now be included in a school district’s average daily attendance.
    • Districts may not include a child in ADA for more than two years of kindergarten or a year of transitional kindergarten and kindergarten.
    • Districts will receive 2/3 of the base grant of ADA for TK pupils.
    • Expansion of TK is gradual over the next five school years, with all children who are four before September 1st being eligible for the 2019-20 school year.
    • TK must develop the following skills for children’s school success:
      • Cognitive skills including language, early literacy, and numeracy.
      • Social-emotional skills.
      • Physical skills (gross and fine motor, healthy eating habits).
      • Be age and developmentally appropriate. 
    • Districts may use facilities in available kindergarten classroom space or public or private facilities that have an existing child care license. 
    • TK funds shall supplement not supplant existing state preschool funds and federal funds.
    • School districts or charter schools may contract with a local public agency, a county office of education, a private local provider, or a combination of all three to deliver transitional kindergarten. 
    • Subgrantees will be considered public school employers to include those employees in collective bargaining agreements. 
    • TK must use California Preschool Foundations until TK standards are developed. 
    • TK must coordinate with other providers of services (health insurance, developmental screenings, etc.) including First 5 CA programs.

    Workforce Requirements

    • By July 1, 2015, all TK teachers must have an associate’s degree with 24 units in early childhood education with a plan for a credential and bachelor degree by July 2019.
    • By July 1, 2015, all TK associate teachers must have 24 units in early childhood education and a plan for an associate’s degree by July 2019.
    • By July 1, 2019, all TK teachers will have a bachelor’s degree and a credential and all associates teachers will have an associate’s degree.

    Next Steps

    • By July 1, 2015, the Superintendent will develop and the state board will adopt emergency regulations for implementation.
    • By July 1, 2016, the Superintendent will develop and the state board will adopt TK standards, curriculum frameworks, and instructional materials that are based on the California Preschool Foundations and aligned to kindergarten education content standards.
    • By January 31, 2017, the state board will revise the Local Control and Accountability Plan to include high-quality transitional kindergarten for all eligible children.