Woodruff Pre-School Prepares Students For College, Workforce - WSPA.com

Woodruff Pre-School Prepares Students For College, Workforce

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Woodruff pre-school programs prepare students for college Woodruff pre-school programs prepare students for college
Woodruff, S.C. - Students in the pre-school programs at Woodruff Primary School are only three- and four-years-old, but teachers are already getting them ready for college, and the workforce.

The curriculum, which is more rigorous than others, is designed to prepare children for kindergarten which will in turn prepare them as they advance in their academic careers, school officials said.

"This program essentially serves to reduce the drop-out rate for us," said Principal Kim McAbee. "Early childhood [education] makes a tremendous difference in a child's future success in school."

The enhanced curriculum is part of the Spartanburg Education Movement, a private group that is urging school districts in the county to better prepare their students. The ultimate goal is that more students will graduate high school and college which will in turn create a more educated workforce.

"If a child is ready to learn to read when they go to kindergarten there is an explosion in capacity that takes place in kindergarten and first grade," said John Stockwell, the executive director of the Spartanburg Academic Movement.

McAbee said since the school introduced its enhanced curriculum in 2006 students' reading levels have risen about 20 percent. She said that means several children enter second grade reading at a third grade level. The increase, she said, is promising because research suggests the first four years of a child's life are the most critical for brain development.

Stockwell said the group, which is partnering with local businesses and colleges, hopes to raise the number of college-educated adults in the county by at least 40 percent over the next decade.

While the program will strive to prepare students for four-year colleges, Stockwell said the group will also encourage other post-secondary education, such as associate's degree and certificate programs.

The crucial test to the program will be to survey how many of the students, now in elementary school, graduate high school and college.
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