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New Ken-Arnold kindergarten

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Saturday, May 4, 2013, 9:00 p.m.

I am shocked and disappointed that the New Kensington-Arnold School Board voted to reduce kindergarten classes to half-days for the 2013-14 school year.

I can't believe that this decision came without prior notification to parents. I regularly communicate with Greenwald Elementary, the kindergarten administrator and the director of YMCA Childcare, but I never heard that half- versus full-day kindergarten was up for a vote.

It is unfair to vote on such an important matter without properly notifying parents. After the vote, my husband found the meeting agenda on the district's website, and this item is not listed.

It is also disheartening to read in the VND that “finances were a factor;” that because “80 percent of the district's kindergarten students haven't attended a preschool program,” entering full-day kindergarten would be a “difficult adjustment” and the board “can reverse course in the future if they (sic) find the half-day classes are detrimental.”

We're going to wait to see if this decision is detrimental? Why are we holding back students who are prepared for full-time kindergarten because some are not? This decision is not in the best educational interest of all students.

I'm requesting the board reconsider this vote and/or provide parents a full-day/half-day option, with eligibility for full-day determined by student readiness.

If you would like to sign a petition to repeal this decision and return to full-time kindergarten, go to and search NKASD.

These concerns need to be publicly addressed.

Jacki Keyes

New Kensington

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