Beyond crayons and circle time: What California transitional kindergarten needs to succeed

Thanks to TikTok videos, billboards and other creative marketing techniques, enrollment in  transitional kindergarten in California appears to be climbing. But advocates are keeping an eye on how those 4-year-olds are spending their class time — which they say will be a key factor in whether the $2.7 billion program is a success.

“Quality is top of mind for us. Some districts are treating it like a second year of kindergarten, which we know doesn’t work,” said Benjamin Cottingham, with Policy Analysis for California Education, an independent, nonpartisan research center. “To be effective, TK needs to be a play-based, developmentally appropriate course of study.”

Transitional kindergarten, which California first launched in limited capacity in 2010, is meant to ease 4-year-olds into the rigors of elementary school. Ideally, it combines the carefree fun of preschool with a hint of structure and academic know-how, so children are better prepared for kindergarten and beyond. In a high-quality TK classroom, children learn to share and take turns, draw pictures and play with blocks, sit in a circle and enjoy story time, among other skills.

Please help put parents in charge of their child’s education by forwarding this article to other parents, family, friends and voters.
person holding red and white pen by Lucas Alexander is licensed under Unsplash

Other Articles

How a 41-Year-Old Elementary School Teacher Eats on $76K in Eugene, OR
She gets a weekly box of fresh veggies from her local CSA and bakes buttery, crunchy apple shortbread bars for her fellow teachers.
Read More
Private child care in San Diego feeling the brunt of California's new free TK programs
Many teachers have left the private workforce to go work for Universal TK, compounding the teacher shortage
Read More
How Technology is Changing the World of Education
Education is one of the most important and impactful sectors in our society. It shapes the minds and skills of future generations, and it influences the development and progress of humanity.
Read More
Beth Ann Rosica: A glimmer of hope for public schools — union opt outs
More and more, teachers in government schools are exercising their right to leave their unions.
Read More
Teachers Have Too Many Extra Responsibilities to Be Effective. Some Ways to Help
Easing the pressure, raising pay and tending to teachers' mental health can bring joy back to the classroom — and the career path.
Read More
From the Marine Corps to the Classroom
After serving in the Marines and working in corporate America, Annie Talley Ochoa finally found her way to the classroom.
Read More
California schools now offer girls' flag football
The upcoming academic year will mark the first time students in California will be able to join girls' flag football as a state-sponsored varsity sport.
Read More

Get latest news delivered daily!

We will send you breaking news right to your inbox

© 2024, Privacy Policy | FPPC #1460602