Governor proposes state funded full-day kindergarten for Kansas schools

More school for kids, fewer dollars for parents

OLATHE, Kan. - Kansas kindergartners may have more school time and parents will no longer have to pay for it. That's if a proposal made by Governor Sam Brownback for the state to fund full day kindergarten is approved.

Right now, a parent at an elementary school in the Spring Hills School District wants to send their child to kindergarten all day they have to pay $65 per week.

More than half the parents opt to pay and students and parents there think adding the full day makes all the difference.

"Socially emotionally, intellectually, cognitively, it just allows the boys and girls time to develop and learn," Lisa Bascue said, who teaches kindergarten at Prairie Creek Elementary.

Traci Jackson is willing to pay more than $2,000 a year so her kindergartner can enjoy a full day of class.

"I know other states that have the full day option, at least that it's fully covered and I've always wondered why we didn't," she said.

Kansas only covers costs for half a day of kindergarten.

"I mean I'm lucky that we have the means to afford it," Jackson said.

That fee could be eliminated if the Governor's proposal is accepted. It'll cost the state $80 million for five years which the Governor said will come from surplus revenue made this year.

"Full day students just have more opportunities it seems like," Bascue said.

Bascue has taught half day and full day classes.

"Being here all day long allows them to have more opportunities to sound out their letters in order to make words and it's a big help on transitioning them into first grade," she said.

That's a big reason why it's the only option for Jackson's kids. She remembers having a full day kindergarten herself.

"I can just remember everything I learned and being able to have that extra time in school," she said.

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