Olympia school district to launch new early childhood education program in 2023

rboone@theolympian.com/Rolf Boone

The Olympia School District is planning to launch a new preschool program called Transitional Kindergarten in January.

The program is designed to provide support for children facing barriers to kindergarten readiness, according to the district. The district plans to work with Olympia area early childhood programs to coordinate enrollment in an effort to avoid competition for attendance.

According to an email sent to OSD families, the pilot program will be structured like a regular kindergarten classroom and will serve up to 18 students. It will be staffed by one teacher and a paraprofessional. The class will start in January at Madison Elementary School on the city’s east side.

Since space is limited, priority will be given to children living in the Madison attendance area. But families from all over the district are eligible to apply.

Applicants must meet the following criteria:

Priority will be given to:

More information about the program and how to join an informational session is on the school district’s website. Questions can be directed to the Student Support Department at 360-596-7539 or email earlylearning@osd.wednet.edu.

The program also needs community volunteers to shape its leadership team. The commitment would include one 90-minute meeting per month. Those interested can complete an application form on the school district’s Transitional Kindergarten webpage. Contact Thomas Parnell, assistant director for Early Learning, or Domenico Spatola-Knoll, Principal at Madison, with questions about this team.