Daily Journal staff reports
Clark-Pleasant schools has opened its own preschool so that more 5- and 6-year-olds will be better prepared for their first day of kindergarten.
The new, half-day program has room for about 12 students, but the need for preschool among students in the community is much higher, curriculum instruction specialist Cameron Rains said.
Opening the new preschool is a step officials can take toward meeting the need, Rains said. Until now Clark-Pleasant offered a preschool program exclusively for students with special needs.
“We aren’t going to be the answer for (all students), but we can certainly play a role,” Rains said.
Principals and officials were often asked about where children should attend preschool but didn’t know what programs were in the area.
About 64 percent of the 500 students who began kindergarten at Clark-Pleasant schools this school year could recognize the alphabet and different words in testing before school started. Both are essential skills in helping children start learning to read. One of the goals of opening the new preschool is to improve that rate, Rains said.