Full Day Kindergarten in Mokena 159 is Coming Back

The Mokena School District 159 board gave thumbs up to bringing back a full-day kindergarten class to Mokena Elementary for the 2014-2015 school year.

Parents living within the Mokena School District 159 boundaries gave a round of applause to board members after they voted in favor of bringing back full-day kindergarten starting the next school year.

The measure was passed without any votes against, and without additional discussion. Board members discussed increasing kindergarten to all day during the December meeting.

“As part of our initiative to reinvest in our schools and community, and obviously knowing the importance of having full day kindergarten and early intervention, we decided to recommend to the board to bring it back,” said D159 Superintendent Omar Castillo after the meeting. “We felt that would be a benefit to all of our students and community to bring it back.”

Mokena Elementary has the facility space and furnishings to engage students in classes throughout a full day, Castillo said. The district will be bringing on more teachers, depending on how many students are enrolled for the 2014-2015 year, he said.

“We don’t foresee having a problem getting highly qualified teachers for our students,” Castillo said.

Now with the full day approved, the district will send out registration information to the community to see what the class size will be. Castillo anticipates it will be greater than previous years.

“I think there are parents who are seeking the full day program, and opted out to private facilities and parochial schools due to us not having it,” he said. “This is one of the continuing changes people will see as we move forward in District 159 to bring programs back that are valuable to our community and kids.”

Budget discussions have yet to begin for the 2014-2015 school year, and as of Wednesday night, Castillo said it was unclear how the full day of kindergarten will affect the district’s tax levy.

“It’s a little to early to tell,” he said.

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Marian Cunningham January 18, 2014 at 09:51 AM
Who cares about this when one of the third grade teachers won the Hot Teacher Contest on 101.9 the Mix? What an accomplishment.
Connolly January 19, 2014 at 06:23 PM
R.W.VOTER People like you that ruin this country...Thank you! !!!!!!! ( hope your proud)
R.W.Voter January 19, 2014 at 10:18 PM
Connolly, My opinion of you is much lower than yours of me. I am entitled to my opinion and you can disagree with it. Obviously you act like a left wing person in that you just attack the person. What is your opinion on the situation, say it or don't you have an opinion. I am not going to ruin the country, the public education system will do that, and has a good head start. Thank you
Connolly January 20, 2014 at 07:29 AM
R.w. voter.full day kindergarten is nothing but a great thing for our children.the school district has very highly educated teachers that work very hard to teach our children.the children absorb so much information at that age why would you want to limit to a half a day.this is a proven fact not opinion.so in my opinion yes it is people like you that will ruin this country because you want to hold back children..from the education that they need and deserve to be prosperous.. Thank you. .....
R.W.Voter January 20, 2014 at 09:18 AM
The education degree is one of the lowest on the scale, what does it take to teach a 5 year old, mothers have been doing it for years without the assistance of a Union teacher. The teachers are more worried about their contract, and will they get extra to get them on the bus. Full day kindergarten is a waste of time. In public schools the scores are dropping so they want to eliminate standard tests. No, it is just a ploy,bring back the day when children failed, and were not promoted when they couldn't make the grade, then you have a good system that will put out great results. I vote for vouchers. Thank you


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