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Sometimes we wonder if the quality of a preschool makes a difference. As the mother of two kids, I can speak about the difference between a good or not so good preschool. The quality of preschool matters. The preparation given by a good preschool makes a difference in a child’s education.
My daughter, who was born with special needs, attended a great preschool that she qualified for because of her condition. However, my son attended a low performing preschool in our area.
The US Department of Education believes that when families and the institutions where children learn partner in meaningful ways, children have more positive attitudes toward school, stay in school longer, have better attendance, and experience more school success.
Such a partnership mainly happens in preschools that have a set of criteria and learning standards. My daughter’s pre-school had certified teachers in every classroom. They engaged the family members more regularly to ensure that parents were supportive of their child’s development.
Her school communicated about student progress and the early learning curriculum that was used. Such partnership and engagement made a huge difference in my daughter’s early education. Unlike what I experience with my son’s preschool.
Unfortunately, my son’s preschool did not use certified teachers to teach a curriculum. Parents were not engaged, and they followed a childcare like environment. More specifically, it seemed like they printed random worksheets to use each day with no set structure.
Preschool or Childcare
Some early learning centers call themselves a preschool when in reality they are childcares. Make sure to seek out the differences before you choose a preschool. A preschool teaches using a structured schedule and early language standards. While a childcare may just focus on caring for your child and not provide an educational experience.
States have websites that provide you a list of preschools and childcare that have appropriate certifications. The certifications are a set of standards that a preschool must implement and follow on a regular basis. Such standards engage kids in a learning environment that prepares them for kindergarten.
The beginning of kindergarten requires evaluations to help determine if a child is ready for kindergarten. When my daughter began kindergarten, she was well-prepared for school. However, this was not the same for my son. In Kindergarten his in-class evaluations showed he was not ready for Kindergarten.
Although he learned the numbers up to 10 and some social language, his reading abilities were not appropriate for Kindergarten. It was then when I realized, I had paid for a childcare program, not a preschool.
As parents, we may not realize what to do in certain academic situations. I wish I had a better understanding of preschool and kindergarten readiness. This experience taught me that the quality of a preschool makes a difference in a child’s educational preparation.