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Question of the Week: Should Portsmouth Schools Offer Full-Day Kindergarten?

We want to know what local residents think about this issue.

Earlier this week, former town councilor and Republican Town Committee Chairman Jeffrey Plumb submitted an opinion letter, entitled ""

Plumb wrote about the distribution of fliers last weekend, which were "personally attacking Jonathan Harris for his role as chairman of the negotiating team for Portsmouth School Committee," according to Plumb.

Many Portsmouth Patch users commented on this opinion letter. Some users brought up the issue of "full day kindergarten."

"The kindergarten teachers do an amazing job with the amount of time they have our kids during a half day. We really do need to find a way to make it full day," wrote one user.

We want to know what you think:

Should Portsmouth schools offer full-day kindergarten?

Tell us in the comments section below!

Stephanie Carroll April 10, 2011 at 12:52 PM
Full day K would be a wonderful thing! Problem being, how can it be funded? The SC and Dr. Lusi are saying there is no money, so where /how do we get the extra classroom space and pay for more teachers to instruct? What a mess!
East side April 10, 2011 at 04:38 PM
It's lack of people with proper budget and finance skills. Full day classes are the norm and is what should have been part of the budget. The problem is that the state allows this and it is a sneaky way to by pass costs. This is a mess and the town needs to stand up to the folks in the school committee the town council and the state.
Russ Costa April 10, 2011 at 11:44 PM
I have a child in Kindergarten and a number of parents volunteer to help make up for the very short time allowed in the teaching plans for kid-writing (1.5 hours per week total). While most of the children I help are doing very well, there are some who clearly would benefit from more time. At a recent meeting of the school commitee, ome of the members commented on the number of children in various remedial situations, and the cost of such extra help. I wonder how much full day kindergarten would reduce this number. The earlier we reach these kids the better. I would even venture to guess that the short term cost increase would be paid back in savings on costly IEPs.
Portsmouth Senior Citizen April 11, 2011 at 12:19 AM
This question is a no brainier - of course full day classes. Why are children in Portsmouth K classes being penalized? Portsmouth and the State have an educational requirement for all K students - yet Portsmouth school system prefer jamming all the requirements into these little children within a 2 1/2 hour school day. Where as other town schools provide the same requirements utilizing a full day. What is wrong with this picture!!! All the Portsmouth K teachers are doing a tremendous job with what they have to deal with. Yet, who is receiving the short end of the stick? Not the teachers for they still receive pay for a full days work. Of course, the children are the ones who are the losers. Stop and think - a five-year-old going to school and all that is jammed down their throat is work, work and more work. Recess is not even considered and lets not even talk about PE classes. OMG – let us not think of trying to release some of these children’s built up energy. They do not need any physical exercise. Not all five year olds can learn at the same level, but Portsmouth thinks so by providing 1/2-day K classes. Sorry Portsmouth K students - I guess Portsmouth Officials do not feel you are worth the money to provide full day classes. Moreover, you wonder why certain parents are sending their children to private schools. ONLY IN PORTSMOUTH
Wendy Graham March 13, 2012 at 03:52 AM
I know this thread is almost a year old, but I want to leave a comment that I WAS searching for a home in Portsmouth, but once I found out Kindergarden was only 1/2 day, I will not be moving to Portsmouth. Both parents work full time AND I cannot see how children benefit from only 1/2 day. My son, who will start Kindergarden in the Fall of 2012 is in a full time pre-K now so this is moving backwards and I suspect makes the time at home all about homework instead of all about family time.

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