updated: 2/23/2007 9:40:20 AM
A plan to offer full-day kindergarten statewide has passed the Indiana Senate. The bill would require all school corporations and charter schools to offer full-day kindergarten to all students by 2009-2010. Prior to that, the program would be phased in starting with low-income students.
Source: Inside INdiana Business
INDIANAPOLIS – A plan to offer full day kindergarten statewide was approved by the Indiana State Senate today 37-12.
Co-authored by State Senator Vi Simpson (D-Ellettsville), Senate Bill 567 would require all school corporations and charter schools to offer full day kindergarten for all students by the 2009-2010 school year. Prior to that, it would be phased in starting with students who are eligible for free or reduced price lunches, beginning with the 2007-2008 school year.
“Having championed full day kindergarten for years, I am thrilled to see the legislature getting on board with this effort,” said Simpson. “Full day kindergarten will give Hoosier kids the chance to get ahead academically and in today’s competitive world, every little bit helps.”
According to a 2006 Indiana Department of Education survey of all public school superintendents and some charter school administrators, those districts offering full day kindergarten saw several positive changes as a result of their programs. For example, 53 percent saw fewer grade retentions, 53 percent saw improved attendance, 93 percent saw improved social skills and 96 percent saw improved academic achievement.
Those results align with an increasing body of empirical evidence that full day kindergarten provides several long-term benefits to students. A 2002 study conducted in Pennsylvania found that by the time they reached third and fourth grades, students who had participated in full-day kindergarten were 26 percent more likely to have made it to that level without repeating a grade. Among students who made it to third grade without repeating any grades, former full day kindergarteners were more likely to score higher on standardized reading and math tests, earn better grades overall and have better attendance.
Nine other states currently require all school districts to offer full day kindergarten.
For more information on State Senator Vi Simpson, her legislative agenda or other matters before the State Senate, please visit www.senatedemocrats.IN.gov or call 1-800-382-9467.
Source: Senate Democrats