By SAMANTHA SMYIE
Kozminski Community Academy, 936 E. 54th St., will receive $100,000 for the upcoming school year to expand its Pre-K program.
Early this month, Chicago Public Schools (CPS) announced the Fiscal Year 2020 school budget, which includes $7.7 billion — $117 million more than in 2019. The budget includes a capital budget of $821 million in investments, $120 million will go towards expanding Pre-K classrooms for students between the ages of 3 and 4.
According to CPS’ website, “As part of a $120 million combined investment in Pre-K facilities, $20 million is being allocated for classroom conversions to be completed in time for the 2019-20 school year. $100 million is being allocated for classroom expansion at schools throughout the city to support additional Pre-K seats that will open in fall 2020.”
Bernadette Glover, principal at Kozminski, said she is excited to begin the new school year and grateful to receive more funding for the school’s Pre-K program. “One of the great things about Pre-K programming is its early development, educational practices and social development activities that help to promote school readiness for our students,” said Glover.
Kozminski started its Pre-K program last year. The school uses a “blended model” that provides instruction for all students in one classroom, whether they are diverse learners or general education. Before the expansion, the school only had 20 seats in the morning and afternoon program. Now, they will have an additional 20 seats, a full-day program targeting four-year-old children and a brand new classroom.
“The expansion allows us to give a foundation to students in our half-day program who will get the first choice to be able to move over to our full-day program as four-year-olds,” explained Glover. “What we’ve seen is the development of our students’ abilities when they have been in that half-day structure program as a three-year-old and then moved into the full-day program and later becoming a part of our kindergarten classroom.”