First Days in School

How many of us can remember that first day or Kindergarten or Preschool?  I remember my sweaty hand being held and hiding behind my mothers dress.  Even then I did not like to go into places where I was a stranger.  Stop and think about those experiences and how they can shape the way students feel about school for the rest of their lives.
Is that first day a day of bright colors and fun surroundings or a day of bland colors and rigid rules.

by JOHN R. FLYNN

A plan for designing an effective and useful early childhood education center.
 

According to U.S. Office of Education reports, two decades ago, only 10 states were providing pre-kindergarten programs. Currently, it is reported that 39 states and the District of Columbia provide support for pre-k programs. States are contributing about $4 billion to pre-kindergarten and childcare programs. In 2001, states spent in excess of $1.9 billion for more than 765,000 children to attend pre-k. In its publication, The Condition of Education 2004, the National Center for Education Statistics indicates that pre-primary enrollment increased by 20 percent, from 1993 to 2003. It is noted that an important aspect of this increase is the participation of children in full-day programs. In 2003, approximately 56 percent of the children attended full-day programs, compared to 40 percent in 1993.

The recognition of the positive impact of early childhood programs on the cognitive development of pre-school age children, as well as a variety of social and economic factors, has created public pressure for the availability of pre-kindergarten education programs, not only in urban areas, but in suburban and rural areas as well. The material that follows is intended to provide a conceptual framework on which to develop the general design requirements for an early childhood education center. It is not intended to provide educational specifications for instructional and support spaces, the design of which are situational, in that they should respond to programmatic requirements established by the school district. Compliance with applicable federal, state and local requirements is assumed.

 

 


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