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May 18, 2012
For immediate release

Island children and parents learn about kindergarten

Education and Early Childhood Development

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Orientation sessions for children preparing for kindergarten next year are underway at schools across Prince Edward Island, says Education and Early Childhood Development Minister Alan McIsaac.

“Welcome to Kindergarten™ sessions provide families with an overview of what takes place in kindergarten, from the classroom to school activities and even bus safety,” said Minister McIsaac. “The information sessions allow students and families to meet their teacher and receive literacy and numeracy strategies that will help four- and five-year-olds prepare for the transition to kindergarten.”

Welcome to Kindergarten™ was introduced in Prince Edward Island in 2009. The program was developed by The Learning Partnership, a national not-for-profit organization dedicated to creating a strong public education system in Canada. Pre-school children and their families receive books and resources to support early learning. The goal is to ensure students are as prepared as they can be coming into the school system.

“This is a great way to introduce parents to the school community,” said BJ Willis, program coordinator for Welcome to Kindergarten™. “It allows parents, caregivers and their children to meet the school team and learn specific strategies that can be used at home to ensure their child acquires the skills needed to be successful as they begin their public school journey in September. Resources are also available to take home which continues to build the child’s excitement for school. The orientation introduces families to their local school and helps build the child’s confidence in making the transition to kindergarten.”

Parents, caregivers and children are encouraged to attend Welcome to Kindergarten™ workshops at their school this spring. Participants receive early-learning resources in the Welcome to Kindergarten™ Bag and have the opportunity to learn about school bus safety. Information on how family-planned activities can enhance learning is also available. Specific orientation dates are listed on the school board websites.

“This September will mark the third year for kindergarten in the Prince Edward Island school system,” said Minister McIsaac. “By providing children with educational resources and supports in the classroom at an earlier age, it will help prepare them for success as they continue on in school. Publicly funded kindergarten is benefiting approximately 1,400 five-year-old children and their families each year.”

For more information on the Welcome to Kindergarten™ program, visit the website at or contact your child’s school.

Media Contact: Laura Steeves
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