A number of studies suggest that young children who enter pre-kindergarten programs develop their learning skills more effectively than those who don't.
That's one reason why state lawmakers recently decided to examine and reform the Virginia Preschool Initiative. One of the underlying issues is making sure that low-income children have access to—and take advantage of— those programs.
Some of the reasons why children don't enroll include lack of affordability, eligibility, and other challenges.
Many teachers, parents, and policymakers have agreed that the state's Standards of Learning have forced classroom instruction to be geared toward test-taking, rather than developing more comprehensive learning skills. But as the SOLs are being revised, some are concerned that Social Studies-and ultimately the lessons that teach children civic engagement-are being minimized too much.
The youngest and the oldest people in our communities sometimes find themselves marginalized.
Often they are seen in terms of what they take from society, because of what they cannot yet do, or what they can no longer do.
But Shannon Jarrott, who teaches human development at Virginia Tech, wants to change that using collaboration as her prime approach. Twice a week kids from Virginia Tech’s Child Development Center for Learning and research, a preschool program based at the University, get together with elders from the Adjacent Adult Day Services.