Bellevue Hopes to Expand Early Learning Opportunities for Kids
Tara Wittrock, Director of Preschool at Bellevue Independent Schools, came to the Board of Education meeting last Wednesday to report that Head Start is up and running at Grandview Elementary and has twenty students enrolled, some of whom will be enrolling in kindergarten next year. She also announced that a grant has come through for the Me and My School program for the upcoming summer. It is a six-week program specifically for children who are going to kindergarten in the fall.
Since the district just realized that they will have the money to run the program, the details are not immediately available, but will be in the next few months.
"Equally exciting, we are currently talking to a nonprofit agency about the potential to create a full-day preschool option for our families in need," said Wittrock. "If this would be approved moving forward, students would be able to attend the Bellevue Preschool Program for half of their day, and the other program for the second half thus increasing readiness in all developmental areas."
Wittrock told the board that the district believes strongly that quality early childhood programs are vital to success in schools, and the reality is that families in the community need more than a three-hour, four-day preschool program and the potential of partnering with a nonprofit agency can be an opportunity to serve families better.
Also, the Commonwealth of Kentucky has initiated a program called Strengthening Families, and Bellevue's preschool staff has completed its initial training for this program. Wittrock said that this program will help the district support their families to a greater extent.
Wittrock told the board about the Community-Based Work to Transition Programming Coach that was hired to help the students find work after high school. Currently the program is a partnership between Dayton and Bellevue Schools.
Several students from Grandview Elementary and Bellevue High School were honored for their creativity before the meeting. Each one received a certificate and had their picture taken with Superintendent Robb Smith and their principals.