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Frequently Asked Questions

What curriculum is used in 9-R preschools?
We use the Creative Curriculum for Preschool as a framework which uses exploration and discovery as a way of learning and enables children to develop confidence, creativity, and lifelong critical thinking skills. We address all the Colorado Academic Standards through this curriculum in a nurturing, predictable and fun environment.

Is there child care available for after school hours and on Mondays?
There are no services available for our preschool students on Mondays. Unfortunately, due to child care rules and regulations, preschool students are not able to participate in the district's Kids' Camp program at the school.

How can I get my child into a 9-R preschool classroom?
We have a limited number of slots available, and we give priority to children who are 4 years old by September 1st and who live within the school attendance area. When space is available we will also serve 3 year olds. The first step to enrollment is to complete a Preschool Interest Form and send it to Libby Culver. She will get in touch with you to let you know if there is space available or if your child is on a waiting list.

What is the ratio of teachers to preschool students?
1-8. We have a limit of 16 children with a licensed teacher and full time instructional aide in each class.

Why do you charge tuition in a public school preschool?
The state of Colorado does not provide funding for preschool education except for assistance for those students who qualify for the Colorado Preschool Program (CPP) or for those students who have been identified as having special needs. CPP is for students who may be at risk for being unsuccessful in kindergarten.

What is the tuition for 9-R early childhood programs?
There is no tuition for kindergarten, and tuition for the 2020-2021 school year a full school day preschool program Tuesday-Friday will be $480 per month and $240 per month for half day preschool classes Tuesday-Friday.
What is the Forest Preschool classroom and how can my child get in?
The district operates one preschool classroom that is primarily outdoor-based. This licensed classroom is located at Needham Elementary School with students coming to school at 8:00, leaving at 3:00, and being at a variety of outdoor learning spaces from approximately 8:15-1:15. Because of the unique nature of this class, we do not give priority to children from the Needham attendance area but open it up to 4 year old children from throughout our community. Parents may indicate their interest in the Forest Preschool on the Preschool Registration Interest Form, and their child's name will be included in a lottery for one of the 16 slots available. An information meeting will be scheduled prior to the lottery in April 2020 to provide more detailed information.

How do I apply for tuition assistance?
Parents will complete the CPP Eligibility Checklist and turn it in to their child's teacher or Libby Culver. As part of the determination process, a staff member will complete a short developmental screening. CPP funding support is available to families in all district preschools, Head Start classrooms, Durango Early Learning Center, Riverhouse Children's Center, and the Fort Lewis College Campbell Center.

What if my child has a September birthday and misses the cutoff for kindergarten?
We recognize that September 1st is an arbitrary date and that children may have the developmental and academic maturity to be successful in kindergarten. This decision is made after observation of your child in their preschool setting and talking with parents and teachers. Contact Libby Culver for more information.

What if my child turns 5 years old after October 1st?
We now have permission from the state to accelerate highly advanced gifted children if their birthday falls after October 1st if they are evaluated to be exceptional in aptitude/cognitive reasoning, academics, school readiness and motivation. For further information, see the Early Access tab under this Early Childhood section.

Contact Information
To get more information about our preschool availability and program information, you may contact:
Libby Culver
Coordinator of Early Childhood Programs
Phone: 970-247-5411 ext. 1468
Email: lculver@durangoschools.org