So far, only two kindergarten pupils will attend school in half-day sessions.
By NANCY TULLIS
VINDICATOR SALEM BUREAU
COLUMBIANA -- Columbiana school officials thought most parents would opt to send their kindergartners to school all day.
Turns out, they were right.
When pupils return to Columbiana Schools in September, three classes of all-day kindergartners will be among them.
Schools Superintendent Patricia Hura said responses from parents who registered their children for kindergarten are that two want half-day classes, 41 want all-day classes, and 19 gave no response.
Hura said the letters explained to parents that no response would count as an endorsement for the all-day programs.
She said more time to work on reading skills is the greatest pupil benefit of all-day compared to half-day kindergarten.
Many kindergarten pupils have attended preschool and therefore are already used to being in school, she said. The benefit to both teachers and pupils is that the school day is far less rushed.
"Teachers don't have to hurry through the curriculum," she said.
Hura said studies show pupils perform better in first and second grade if they attend kindergarten all day.
She said most area school districts where space is available offer all-day kindergarten, and most parents take advantage of it.
Some parents who attended recent school board meetings said half-day sessions are rushed and they believe all-day sessions to be better for their children.
Hura said the two half-day pupils and any others who may register will attend school half the day in one of the three classrooms and arrive and leave at the appropriate times.