Skip to Content

Redmond schools preparing for full-day kindergarten


School is not quite out yet for Central Oregon students, but the countdown to full-day kindergarten has already begun.

“It’s great that she’s going to be in school all day,” Redmond parent Autumn Loewen said Thursday of her daughter.”Getting ready for those upper-grades is going to help her, and just from working parents, the monetary point of view of, ‘Hey, it’s going to be less daycare for us.'”

The Redmond School District is hiring three more teachers as it prepares for 22 full-day kindergarten classrooms spread across seven elementary schools. Currently, the district operates 22 half-day kindergarten classrooms and six extended-day classes that draw students from the half-day ones.

The funding will come from the state; lawmakers recently unveiled the biggest education budget yet –$7.36 billion.

Still, Redmond Superintendent Mike McIntosh said that’s not as great a budget picture as it might sound.

“Our district is still one day short of a full calendar next year,” McIntosh said. “We’ve got money to keep our current programs working well and/or add kindergarten — not both — but we’re going to do both. We’re going to make it happen.”

The district will pinch pennies where it can — ditching plans to purchase enough iPads for each student, for example. They’ll save money by renting them instead.

Physical classroom space is also an issue.

“We’re at capacity at our elementary schools, and with kindergarten we’ll be at capacity, plus a little bit,” McIntosh said.

Although the upcoming year will be tight, there are plans to make some more room.

McIntosh said the district will take back the Hugh Hartman campus it’s currently leasing to the Redmond Proficiency Academy. The school will eventually serve as the district’s kindergarten campus for all students within the city limits.

It’s a big building that McIntosh hopes eventually will become more than just a school.

“We’ll also have the capacity to create partnerships with services to families,” he said. “From health services, mental health services, nutrition services and early-learning education.”

Now the district just has to finalize it’s budget. The board plans to adopt it June 24th , about a week before the July 1st start of the fiscal year.

Starting next year, the Redmond School District will not offer half-day kindergarten.

School officials want to remind parents that they need to register their kindergarteners for school now, if they have not already done so.

Article Topic Follows: News

Jump to comments ↓

KTVZ News Team


KTVZ NewsChannel 21 is committed to providing a forum for civil and constructive conversation.

Please keep your comments respectful and relevant. You can review our Community Guidelines by clicking here

If you would like to share a story idea, please submit it here.

Skip to content