West Seattle schools: Kindergarten will start ‘late’ for some

Thanks to Pam Rago, family-support worker at Highland Park Elementary, for sharing this information that will affect not only some families at her school, but at three others in our area:

Washington State has approved what is called “slow start” for Title 1, full-day kindergarten schools including Highland Park, Roxhill, Sanislo, and West Seattle. This means that kindergarten will not start on September 4th. Kindergarten will start three days later, on Monday, September 9th.

During the first three days of school (September 4th – 6th) the kindergarten teachers will be meeting with families for a beginning-of-the-year parent-teacher conference. This will give our teachers the opportunity to learn more about the incoming kindergarteners before school begins which will then help teachers tailor their program to best meet each child’s needs.

If you have an incoming kindergartener at one of the schools involved, she says, the school will contact you (if it hasn’t already) about setting up the meeting time.

13 Replies to "West Seattle schools: Kindergarten will start 'late' for some"

  • Lesley August 23, 2013 (11:12 am)

    Not technically West Seattle but Concord Int’l in South Park is also a Title 1, “slow start” for Kindergarten.

  • Cathy August 23, 2013 (12:01 pm)

    Wow, that sure isn’t a lot of notice that the kids aren’t starting on the first day of school.

  • ttt August 23, 2013 (12:43 pm)

    This is kind of silly. Washington State should be paying all kindergarten teachers to do conferences and assessments before the school year begins, so the school year time can be used for learning. Conferences with incoming kindergarteners and their parents should be in the “fully funding education” category.

  • BMC August 23, 2013 (1:46 pm)

    Why can’t they start with the rest of the district and just do half days like Pathfinder and Gatewood?? Seriously, what if people don’t show and they still need to do this all later? It must create confusion at this late date….

    • WSB August 23, 2013 (1:50 pm)

      Just a note lest there be some misunderstanding – This isn’t the only or first announcement about this. We are often asked to ALSO publish something, just in case people didn’t get phone messages or postcards or whatever – We do reach a large percentage of West Seattleites (and people in other parts of the city who are interested in WS) and so asking us to share information too is something of an extra base covered. -TR

  • Forest August 23, 2013 (2:47 pm)

    BMC –

    Pathfinder is full day kindergarten during the school year. Half day classes were taught this past week, but it was to help youngsters prep for their first day of school.

  • beef August 23, 2013 (3:28 pm)

    this is the first notice i received of it. after i saw this i got a recorded message about it. less than 2 weeks before the start of school is not the best planning.

  • Bonnie August 23, 2013 (3:44 pm)

    A friend of mine who is in the Highline school district just found out about this at their school last night. First she knew of it too.

  • Chadwick August 23, 2013 (5:49 pm)

    First I’ve heard of it and I can definitely say this is totally weak and creates a terrible impression. Is this how they are going to run things this year? Not cool. Not cool at all.

  • Bmc August 23, 2013 (7:03 pm)

    Forest – Pathfinder is 1/2 day for Sept 4 to 6th, then f/t from then on.

  • Ferryboat August 23, 2013 (8:20 pm)

    The schools are part of WA Kids. You can read more about the program at http://www.k12.wa.us/wakids/. Students in Highline went to Kindergarten Jump Start for a week about two weeks ago and I believe that the parents were informed then about the late start. I know it seems crazy but I run into parents all the time that have no idea when school begins. I also believe that schools just recently found out that the late start was a for sure.

  • Heidi A August 24, 2013 (10:08 am)

    This seems like a step backwards. A couple of years ago west Seattle elementary started before labor to increase instruction time. Now it’s being shortened?
    When my son was entering K, his teacher visited families in their homes before school started. seems like schools should be able to allow teachers to get to know families without shortening class room time

  • Ferryboat August 24, 2013 (2:45 pm)


    What you’re speaking about at WS Elem. was when they were given extra money as a SIG (school improvement grant) school and chose to make their school year longer. I agree that it’s great to get to know parents and kids before school begins, but there is no money to pay teachers to do this.

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