The New York Times recently published, “The Kindergarten Exodus,” bringing attention to the fact that among the one million children who didn’t enroll in school during the COVID-19 pandemic, many of them were kindergartners living in low-income communities. In fact, neighborhoods below and just above the poverty line saw a drop in kindergarten enrollment of more than 13 percent. With the new school year underway, many parents continue to have concerns about the pandemic along with confusion about district actions to support their young children as they transition from early childhood settings. At the same time, many others are eager to get their young children into elementary school classrooms after 18 months of inconsistency. As a result, some districts are seeing an influx of kindergarten students, while others are still seeing major drops in enrollment.
On September 28, from 3-4:30 p.m. ET, please join us for The Kindergarten Exodus: Why, Where and What We Can Do Now, co-sponsored by New America and The Campaign for Grade-Level Reading. Michelle Figlar of the Heinz Endowments will share opening remarks to frame the discussion with dedicated district superintendents as they describe how their districts are responding to various findings in the New York Times article and other pandemic-precipitated challenges affecting the early grades.
We look forward to highlighting kindergarten and early grade bright spots and lessons learned from the last 18 months as well as key strategies to reengage parents and reenroll children. We will also look at the role of effective and supportive transition policies and practices in helping to ensure that children, families and educators have what they need for a successful school year, as outlined in our recently released Toolkit for Effective and Supportive Transitions.
Laura Bornfreund (moderator)
Director of Early & Elementary Education Policy, New America
Michelle M. Figlar (presenter)
Vice President of Learning, Heinz Endowments
Kyla Johnson-Trammell, Ed.D.
Superintendent, Oakland Unified School District
Superintendent, Wichita Falls Independent School District
Cheryl Logan, Ed.D.
Superintendent, Omaha Public Schools
Alena E. Zachery-Ross, Ed.D.
Superintendent, Ypsilanti Community Schools
Have a question about this event? Please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
This event is presented in partnership with The Campaign for Grade-Level Reading.