Carmichael parents camp out for spot in transitional kindergarten program

Nearly a dozen parents spent Monday evening camped outside the San Juan Central Enrollment and Family Resource Center.

The parents are there because they want to enroll their children in a specific school program. They went prepared for the long haul with blankets, sleeping bags, heaters, hand warmers, and food.

“It’s a good program, so we’re here,” mother of two Rebekah Grivas said.

The San Juan Unified School District program is called transitional kindergarten or TK. TK is the first year of a two-year kindergarten program designed to bridge preschool and kindergarten.

Of the nearly 40 elementary schools in the district, only 14 schools offer the free class.

“Clearly, there’s a huge need for it and that’s why we’re all here,” mother of three Hailey Heller said.

The program is only for children who turn 5 years old between September and December.

The district said there’s not a large population of students to fill up all the slots. Most schools have plenty of space available, that’s why the classes aren’t offered at every school.

But, parents said they want their children enrolled in the popular Del Dayo Elementary program.

“It’s a great program for this age group and it really helps get them ready for kindergarten without doing another year of pre-school,” Heller said.

TK enrollment officially begins Tuesday morning at 8 a.m.

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