Utah Board of Education says full-day kindergarten benefits students’ futures
Mar 22, 2023, 11:00 AM
(Kristin Murphy/Deseret News)
SALT LAKE CITY — Utah’s schools are preparing to add more full-day kindergarten classes now that Gov. Spencer Cox has signed a bill to increase funding for the program.
“Full-day kindergarten has been one of the Board’s top legislative priorities during the last two sessions. It’s going to bring a lot of benefits to the students and it also directly aligns with the Board’s strategic plan.”
Part of the Board’s plan, Turner said, is to make more resources available to schools.
What are the benefits?
Turner said full-day kindergarten makes a positive impact on students’ futures.
“Students in full-day kindergarten are less likely to need academic intervention in later grades. It does provide a better opportunity to identify learning challenges early on.”
Turner said if a student is struggling with a certain concept in full-day kindergarten, teachers have more time to provide support.
“It takes only 15 to 30 minutes over a short amount of time to close a learning gap in kindergarten,” Tuner said. And compared to learning gaps in third grade, “it takes 90 minutes to three hours a day over a long period of time to close a learning gap.”
Is full-day kindergarten mandatory?
Parents will be able to choose what they think is best for their kids.
“This bill does require schools to provide a half-day option if requested by parents,” Tuner said, adding “Full-day kindergarten is totally optional and it does provide parents with the choice to enroll their child if they would like to.”
Listen to the full KSL at Night segment:
- Utah lawmakers pass over 100 education-related bills, USBE member says it’s ‘too many’
- Despite shortages, Tooele County School District says it’s retaining teachers
- Free student breakfast program helps feed long-term success
- Utah legislature gives $15 million for teen centers in high schools. How will they work?