• 63°

Smart Start sends out kits to get kids read for kindergarten

By Susan Shinn Turner

Smart Start Rowan

About this time of year, students in North Carolina pre-kindergarten classrooms are thinking about going to kindergarten in the fall. And most are pretty excited about it.

To help them be prepared, Smart Start Rowan this week distributed 391 kindergarten readiness kits to children across Rowan County.

The county has 26 N.C. pre-K classrooms, both at child care centers and schools. The kits reinforce writing, coloring skills and using scissors, says Mary Burridge, Smart Start Rowan’s family support manager. The colorful, reusable tote bags include a parent guide  available in English or Spanish, a 100-page composition book, four pencils, a sharpener, a 24-pack of crayons and a glue stick. The kits also include a toothbrush and $25 coupon, both from Salisbury Pediatric Dentistry.

“Mary reached out to us to donate materials,” says Natalie Burns, community relations coordinator for the practice. “We definitely think it’s important that each child has a toothbrush, and we want to educate parents on the importance of taking their child to the dentist.”

Good oral health, she says, is part of a healthy lifestyle. “We are here as a dental home for children in the community. We want to be that resource for our community.”

Items are donated throughout the year. Burridge bought the remainder of supplies from Smart Start Rowan funds with a budget of $3,000. Staff members at Smart Start Rowan assembled the kits last week. Additionally, students in the Upward Bound Math and Science program at Central Carolina Community College in Sanford partnered with students at Livingstone College to pack about 150 kits.

Burridge delivered the kits to schools and centers Monday and Tuesday. Typically, most locations have one pre-K classroom.

“The kids love it; they really do,” Burridge says. “They really look forward to receiving them. One teacher called last week and wanted to know if the students were getting the kits this year. If not, she was prepared to purchase the supplies.”

Burridge says some families use the kits right away, while others wait until the fall. “We don’t care when they’re used, as long as they’re being used.”

Brittany Douglas greets Burridge as she delivers kits to Partners in Learning. Her son, Aiden Douglas-Jeffries, will go to kindergarten this fall, and she saw the kits last year when she worked for the facility.

“Those bags are amazing,” she says.

Down the hall, Burridge has dropped off bags to two classrooms. The children are thrilled with the bags, enthusiastically pulling out and examining every item, as assistants Meliya Harris and Jennifer Misenheimer quickly hand them out.

N.C. pre-K is a state-sponsored program for high-needs children to help them be more prepared to enter kindergarten. Families apply for the free program, which follows the Rowan-Salisbury Schools calendar.

Smart Start Rowan continues to accept N.C. pre-K applications for the 2017-18 school year. Access applications at Smart Start Rowan or online at rowan-smartstart.org.

Smart Start Rowan is a United Way member agency.

Comments

Crime

Man receives consecutive prison sentences for sex offenses

BREAKING NEWS

RSS Board of Education approves Faith Elementary sale

Coronavirus

Rowan Health Department receives 400 Pfizer, 800 Johnson & Johnson vaccines for week

Crime

Blotter: Accident in Food Lion only weekend shooting to produce injuries

Crime

Salisbury man charged with felony drug crimes

Crime

Second person charged in thefts from house near county line

Crime

Police use tear gas to end robbery stand off, arrest suspect

Local

Ask Us: When will Rowan Public Library’s West Branch open?

Nation/World

Prosecution case nears end in ex-cop’s trial in Floyd death

Nation/World

Officer accused of force in stop of Black Army officer fired

Crime

Blotter: Man charged with hitting man with car, fleeing while intoxicated

Local

‘Meet the need’: Rowan County Health Department looks to add to vaccination options

Local

Seaford is first woman in county hired for town manager position since the ’90s

Local

Colonial Spring Frolic makes a comeback to kick off museum’s year

Local

Concord City Council wants to name bridge for fallen officer, Rowan native

Education

RSS administration will recommend selling Faith Elementary property to charter school

Business

Inspired by advice from father-in-law, Angela Mills launches her own business in memory of him

Local

Rowan County Democrats re-elect leaders, pass resolutions

Local

Baseball: Memories come alive in Ferebee book

Local

During Child Abuse Prevention Month, professionals reflect on detecting abuse in a virtual world

Business

Biz Roundup: Small Business Center announces spring slate of workshop for business owners

Clubs

Kiwanis Pancake Festival starts Friday

Local

Rowan fire marshal seeks to clear up confusion, worry caused by solicitation letter

Education

Fun every day: Fifth anniversary for Yadkin Path Montessori School