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Early Childhood

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Welcome! We are committed to providing the highest quality early childhood education with the goal of ensuring that each student has the developmental and learning foundations necessary for long term success. Each of our elementary schools includes at least one preschool classroom and one kindergarten classroom.

In both preschool and kindergarten, we support child readiness in numerous ways, including:
  • Program staff who build nurturing, supportive relationships with children and their families
  • Well-planned classroom environments and routines that encourage active engagement and independence
  • Activities that support learning and development in all domains
  • Learning opportunities that encourage exploration, experimentation, critical thinking and problem solving
  • Ongoing assessment of child progress
  • Individualized instructional planning

KINDERGARTEN: Our kindergarten programs are full day classes and follow the school district calendar. Children are eligible for kindergarten if they are 5 years old on or before September 1st. All kindergarten classes are free. If you want your kindergarten child to attend a school outside your attendance area, please follow the Open Enrollment process.
New kindergarten students need to register for the 2020-21 school year through Online Registration.  After registering online, kindergarten students will still need to finish the process at the school when our schools open to the public. Due to the closing of all schools, we will not be able to offer in-person registrations this spring.
Under more relaxed restrictions due to the Coronovirus-19, we are able to serve at our full capacity of 16 children per classroom. Each elementary school has at least one full school day preschool classroom, and Needham Elementary also has a half day program. All preschool classes meet on Tuesdays through Fridays.  We welcome all children, but we do give priority to children who are four years old by September 1st and live in the school attendance area. Tuition for the full school day program is $550 per month, and it is $275 per month for the half day program. Tuition assistance is available through the Colorado Preschool Program. 
Preschool Registration Interest Forms are being accepted at this time. To indicate your interest in a preschool slot, please complete the Preschool Interest Form that is listed under 'Important Preschool Forms'. You may complete the form and email it to Libby Culver at preschool@durangoschools.org. Children who are 4 years old by September 1st have priority, and 3-year-old children will be placed on a waiting list. If there is space available those children will be called in order of their birthdays.
In these unusual times, our normal protocols and systems do not apply. Please be patient as we notify parents of your child's acceptance into a preschool slot as our intention is to let you know as soon as possible. 
Best wishes, to you and your family for health and safety,
For further information please contact Libby Culver, Coordinator of Early Childhood Programs at preschool@durangoschools.org or by calling 970-247-5411 ext. 1468.