JumpStart is a half-day, four to five-week program for children entering kindergarten who have had little or no preschool experience. Led by their soon-to-be kindergarten teacher, these children, along with fellow future classmates, learn the ropes of going to school so that they are not intimidated or left behind on their first day, but instead ready to learn.
- Has been implemented for 17 years.
- More than 3,300 children have benefited from the program.
- Most of the students begin the JumpStart program lacking the basic academic and social skills needed to succeed. After being in JumpStart, most of these students know much of their alphabet, numbers, shapes and other concepts that will help them grow academically.
- Teachers have the opportunity to identify speech or learning problems during JumpStart, which can result in the child receiving services sooner rather than later.
- JumpStart does accept students who are academically ready for kindergarten, but due to the fact that they have not been in any type of preschool setting, they may need to come for the socialization.
- Each class consists of up to 18 students. A teacher and a paraprofessional are hired for each class.
- JumpStart has been a model for similar programs throughout the state of Alabama.
- Students are provided with breakfast and lunch through the Federal Nutrition Program.
- Students are pre- and post-tested using the Developmental Indicator for the Assessment of Learning- Third Edition (DIAL- 3).
- JumpStart is FUN!