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Austintown Pre-K program to host open house

January 8, 2020
J.T. Whitehouse , The Town Crier

On Jan. 16 from 5 to 7 p.m., the Austintown Falcon 5 Pre-Kindergarten Program will host an open house for parents of pre-K children who may be interested to learn more. The open house will be held at Austintown Elementary School (AES) in the kindergarten wing.

"We just started the Pre-K Program this past fall," said program Director Jeanne Sebastiani.

The program is halfway through the first year with 36 pre-kindergartners divided among two classrooms at AES.

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Photo by J.T. Whitehouse, Town Crier
Jeanne Sebastiani, program director for the Austintown Pre K program, is ready to accept applications for the 2020-21 school year.

"Each classroom has fully licensed staff," Sebastiani said. "The classroom assistants are also certified and our curriculum is based on state standards for early childhood learning."

She said the program accepts children who turn four on or before Aug. 4. The program was to help with the new state requirements for kindergarten, which has the date of Aug. 1 to turn five. After that date, the child is not eligible, but can enter a pre-K program.

"We are serving the children who didn't make the cutoff, or weren't prepared," she said.

In the Falcon 5 Pre-Kindergarten Program, children attend Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. The teachers follow the early learning curriculum to prepare them for entry into kindergarten. The classroom time includes fun crafts and lunch is available through the cafeteria.

Since the first year is proving to be a success, the decision was made to begin accepting applications for the next school year now. At the open house, parents can pick up the application and turn it in as soon as they fill it out.

"We will be accepting Austintown residents first," Sabastiani said, "then we will fill any open spots from a waiting list of non-residents. We could have up to three classrooms and 60 children in next school year's program."

She said the cost of the program is $300 per month. For some who can't afford that, help may be available through Jobs and Family Services.

Another service provided is before and after school care for parents that work. Children in the Pre-K program can be dropped off at 7 a.m. at AES and the late pick up is 5 p.m. The fee for the additional time is $5 per hour.

Sebastiani said the open house is a great place to start and see just what the program is about. She said there will be crafts for the children who show up that night.



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